Art Project – Zenteria

Title:  Zenteria

Medium: Zentangle using black markers on paper

My piece is a type of art called zentangling. It uses fine point black markers to draw small details to create a picture. I drew a facultative aerobic gram-positive bacterium with two flagella that I named Zenteria. I also incorporated other microbes into my overall drawing. The cell wall is made of cyanobacteria, each lipid in the plasma membrane is a bacterium with two flagella, and the transmembrane/membrane associated proteins are made of viruses. I drew ebola viruses, bacteriophages, rhinoviruses, herpesviruses, rabies viruses and hepatitis B to represent the different proteins you might find in the plasma membrane. For the flagella, I drew fungi with the fruiting bodies at the base of the flagellum (embedded in the cell) and the mycelia extending down the length of the flagellum. Within the mycelia you can see the nuclei of the cells. In the interior of the cell, you can see the chromosome attached to DNA organizing proteins as well as three additional plasmids. I have also drawn some inclusions in the cell. The large circles are poly- β -hydroxybutyrate (PHB) inclusions which are lipids that are stored by many bacteria for use as a carbon source under anaerobic conditions. The smaller granules that are clumped together are sulfur granules which are used by bacteria found in hydrogen sulphide rich environments.  Zenteria  are bacteria that can metabolize both carbon compounds and sulphur compounds.  The small circles scattered throughout the cell are ribosomes, and the large black circle is a group of photoreceptor proteins which allows the bacterium to be light sensitive (needed for photosynthesis using sulphur).

Of course, my representation of a bacterium is not 100% accurate, but I really enjoyed drawing the small details and incorporating other microbes into the overall picture.

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