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    Figure, graphics and illustration design for scientists: “How to translate and communicate research through visuals”

    Monday 18 May 2015

    An image is worth a thousand words… if well designed! Scientists now produce more visuals than ever in the form of plots, diagrams and illustrations for publications, posters, talks, grants and reviews. However, some researchers feel lost when it comes to communicate their work visually.

    This seminar is for you if you feel that your work would benefit from better graphical designs or if you find it difficult to express your complex concepts visually. The participants will learn the principles and tools that enable them to create better visuals.


    • Learn the basics of graphics (colors, fonts, size, etc) adapted to scientific contents and with a focus on the research field of the participants. 
    • Be able to design from scratch figures for specific cases (publication, reviews, talks, etc.)
    • Understand the concept of graphical story telling and visual communication
    • Improve existing figures (participants will bring their own figures as examples)
    • Be able to turn complex concepts into simple figures
    • Grasp the general concepts of efficient graphical visualization

    During the workshop, various software will be demonstrated, including Adobe Illustrator, with the aim of showing the possibilities offered by these tools. However, the workshop is not designed as a software tutorial.

    For more information, please contact


    Anyone involved in active scientific research.

    A pre-requisite for participation is to send visual material (figures, graphical abstract, poster, slides from talks or anything else) to the trainer 2 weeks before the workshop. Indeed, the workshop intends to fit the specific needs of the participants, to cover their research areas and to provide personalized feedback on the visuals.

    Maximum 15 participants. Priority is given to SIB members or employees.

    Application fee: 150 CHF. The fee include course documentation, coffee breaks and lunch.

    Application for SIB members and employees is closed now.

    Schedule: 9am to 6pm.

    Location: University of Lausanne, Génopode bulding

    The workshop will be conducted by Laura Symul, PhD. She received her education in engineering before getting a PhD in computational biology at EPFL. Besides her scientific background, she kept drawing and started to combine her graphical and scientific skills by designing review figures for scientific journals such as Cellular Microbiology or EMBO Press and doing scientific illustrations for professors or for exhibitions. Currently she works in a consultancy company as data visualization expert.

    For more information please contact