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Ernst Haeckel

Patron Saint

Ernst Haeckel (1834-1919), the eminent German biologist, philosopher and illustrator, hovers over the crochet reef as a guiding spirit for us all. His enchanting, hyperbolically detailed drawings of radiolarians, siphonophores, jellyfish, and other marine life-forms remain one of the most beautiful and alluring bodies of scientific illustration ever created. Again and again we find that our Crochet Reef contributors - like us - have been inspired by his example. We could make that! we have often said, as we gaze in wonder at some marvel he depicted. Whether nature "really is" like this is a question that has been debated for more than a century: Could living creatures really be that symmetric, that perfectly bilteral, or that evenly segmented? But such questions are beside the point: Haeckel instinctively grasped what all great fashion photographers know, that everyone wants to look their best in a picture and the job of the portraitist is to make the subject look as gorgeous as possible. Besides: doesn't everyone look better in a hat?