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Surgical Technique

Among Harwin's favorite works are Volumes I and II of the Manual of Cardiac Surgery. Both are magnificent, full-color primers of instructional illustrations and text depicting cardiac operating procedures from the surgeon's perspective. Listed on the manuals' covers in unprecedented fashion as co-author with cardiac surgeons Bradley J. Harland and Albert Starr, Harwin labored 3 1/2 years on some 310 color illustrations.

In the first volume's preface, the Portland artist explains his attempt to wed surgical science with visual communication:". . . it was necessary to develop an illustrative technique that would allow the audience to visualize accurately the surgical field, where observation is limited and orientation difficult, to represent it as the surgeon sees it, and to understand the anatomy, which is not always visible.

"In part, this was accomplished by painting on both surfaces of transparent paper to create the illusion of looking through superficial layers to the deeper structures. A combination of color media, including colored pencil, graphite, carbon, pastels, and transparent and opaque watercolors, enabled me to convey the field with minimal loss of reality or dimension."
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