Mike Rothman’s CV

Rothman climbing a tree with spikes in French Guiana © Nate Smith 2000

Rothman climbing a tree with spikes in French Guiana © Nate Smith 2000


M.F.A. in Painting: City University of New York (Brooklyn College)

B.A. in Fine Arts: State University of New York at Stony Brook

Teaching Experience

Part-time Adjunct Instructor in Drawing and Painting: Westchester Community College-S.U.N.Y. Peekskill Extension, Fall 2004

Instructor in Core Curriculum: Technology of Materials, Department of Illustration, Parsons School of Design, N.Y. 1981–l984. (Part time adjunct).

Additional Related Experience with Art Materials and as a commercial illustrator

Artist/Technical consultant with the M. Grumbacher Corporation, NY: duties involved quality control over the manufacture of artist’s grade acrylics, watercolors, and oil paints. Further activities dealt with the evaluation and introduction of new pigment and resin types into the company’s lines of artist’s colors and technical correspondence with customers. l977–l987. (Full time employment).

Field and Laboratory Experience as a Natural Science Illustrator

Field work in American Samoa and Western Samoa with Dr. Paul A. Cox of Brigham Young University: paintings of the endangered Samoan Flying Fox (Pteropus samoensis) and drawings of medicinal plants (l985 and l986).

Participated in three expeditions to French Guiana and one expedition to the Brazilian Amazon with the New York Botanical Garden, under the direction of Dr. Scott Mori (Fund for Neotropical Plant Research). (l989, l993, and 2000).

Digital (Photoshop) and traditional media reconstructions of fossil plants (using SEM reference images) under the aegis of Drs. William Crepet, Kevin Nixon, and Maria A. Gondolfo in the Department of Plant Biology, Cornell University: summers 1999 through 2003 and 2007, 2008.

2014-present Microphotography and general habitat photography related to the development of an online flora for the Zofnass Family Preserve, Weschester Co., NY (Weschester Land Trust in conjunction with the New York Botanical Garden).

Artwork as a commercial illustrator:

Here is an overview of my job structure and activities as an non-incorporated, sole proprietor (1987- to the present): All duties related to the acquisition of freelance illustration work assignments; managing advertising budgets; assembling advertising content; negotiation of contracts and fees; meetings and technical liaison with clients; research and reference search; and the completion of all graphic artwork, both of digital and traditional content, required for my commissions. Preparing lectures and demonstrations related to my specialty of natural science illustration for public schools and related venues.

Selected publications and project assignments containing my illustrations:

Freelance illustrator for the New York Times Science Section (1987 – 2006).

Illustrations for Natural History, Scientific American, World Watch, The New Yorker, Merian, Kitchen Gardens, American Archaeology, American Journal of Botany, American Association for the Advancement of Science, and Fine Gardening magazines. (1987 - 2008).

Illustrations for both coin designs and color plates covering a wide range of endangered animal species for ACE Coinage, Inc. (2009- 2012).

W.H. Freeman and Company: Nafanua (Saving the Samoan Rain Forest) 1997: by Dr. Paul Alan Cox (ISBN 0-7167-3116-9): I prepared all the illustrations of Samoan medicinal plants based on fieldwork in the Samoan Archipelago with Dr. Cox from l985 and l986. (Chapter 5: Correspondence was written about my work in the Samoan archipelago).

William Morrow : Seven picture books in The Just for a Day series (natural history stories about the lives of animals for young readers). Illustrations prepared from 1988 – 1999. Some examples being: Sea Elf (ISBN 0-688-10060-0); Jaguar in he Rain Forest (ISBN 0-688-12990-0); Lizard in the Sun (ISBN 0-688-07172-4); and Tyrannosaurus Time (ISBN 0-688-13682-6).

Random House : Inside The Amazing Amazon (ISBN 0-517-59490-0): field work in both French Guiana and the Brazilian Amazon provided reference materials for the panoramic habitat illustrations in this book.

Hyperion: Here Is The Tropical Rain Forest ISBN 1-56282-636-0.

Charlesbridge: The Forest In The Clouds, (ISBN 0-88106-985-X): An introduction to the fauna and flora of the Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve. Harper/Collins : Moon of the Moles ISBN 0-06-020258-0 and Moon of the Alligators ISBN 0-06-022427-4.

Grosset & Dunlap : Giant Lizards ISBN 0-448-43120-3.

Web of Life : At Home With the Gopher Tortoise ISBN 0-9777539-6-4. Named “AnOutstanding Science Trade Book for Students K-12” for 2011 by the National Science Teacher’s Association and Children’s Book Council.

Creative Editions: The Great North Woods ISBN 978-1-56846-275-2. The fauna and flora of the boreal forest.

Institutional Projects

-Mystic Seaport Museum, Mystic Connecticut Economics of Whaling Exhibit (Sperm whale and Bowhead whale paintings) 2015;

-Mural series on the Native American precolonial environment. Wickiup Hill Outdoor Education Center, Linn Co., IA 2012;

-Exhibition artwork for Laredito/San Antonio de Béxar project depicting aspects of Life in colonial Texas, San Antonio, TX 2011;

- Ancient habitat reconstruction paintings for the University of Florida, Museum of Natural History, Gainesville, FL. (2003–2004);

- Western Connecticut Children’s Library Association Summer 2003 Reading Program Poster (Based upon paintings from “Inside the Amazing Amazon”);

- Orangetown Museum and Historical Society, Rockland County, NY: Sparkill Creek habitat mural (2003);

- Exhibition murals for the Atlanta, Philadelphia, Detroit, and Riverbank Zoological Gardens (1987–2000);

- Illustrations for the introductory movie on evolution at the Lila Acheson Wallace Hall of Fossil Mammals at the American Museum of Natural History (1992).


Focus on Nature XIV Roger Tory Peterson Institute of Natural History (cosponsored by the New York Sate Museum), Jamestown, New York, December 2016-April 2017” “In flight reconstruction of Sulcavis georum” (Early Cretaceous, China);

Focus on Nature XIII New York State Museum, Albany, New York, April 2014 through January 2015; “Samoan Tooth-billed pigeon habitat group” painting (Jury Award recipient);

One Man Exhibition: Mark W. Potter Gallery, Taft School, Watertown Connecticut: “Fields and Forest Afar”: Curator paintings from the Institute of Systematic Botany, New York Botanical Garden. 2012.

Natural History Museum, London Whale Fall illustrations for a traveling exhibit from the Seckenberg Museum on the deep seas Summer 2010.

Océanopolis Brest 2010 Exhibition: "Océan de vies", Whale Fall Illustrations, Brest, France, 2010.

GNSI annual exhibitions: 2008 and 2010, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY and North Carolina State University, D.H. Hill Library, respectively.

Focus on Nature II, III, IV, V, VII, XI, and XII: The New York State Museum, Albany,N.Y. (1991, l994, 1996, 2000, 2002, 2010, and 2012 respectively). Recipient: Purchase Award Winner:

Cacao in the Brazilian Atlantic Forest” (Focus on Nature VII).

Planet in Crisis: Azarian-McCullough Art Gallery, St. Thomas Aquinas College, Sparkill, NY, 2008.

Faculty Exhibition: Westchester Community College, Peekskill Extension, 2004.

Pollinators: Bruce Museum, Greenwich, Connecticut 2000

Premier, 2e, and 3e Salons Des Artistes Naturalistes: Museum National d’Histoire Naturelle, Paris, France l996, 1997, and 1998.