The artwork of Greg Dunn starts off simple, typically with circular blobs of liquid black ink on a piece of paper. With a few strong puffs of air, the blobs grow finger-like tendrils that stretch outward — and in turn, those tendrils split off into even smaller branches. Eventually, the paper is covered with what looks like a leafless, black forest.
This ink blowing technique, discovered as a happy accident by Dunn, turns out to be the perfect way to mimic the sprawling, fractal-like complexity of neurons. Instead of a brush, he blows on droplets of ink through a thin tube to depict the shape of neurons and their branches, called dendrites. Dendrites receive messages from other neurons while an elongated trunk known as an axon takes information away.