Friday, February 10, 2006

Himalayan Plants






{plant names are in the image URLs}

4 comments :

Alexa Brett said...

Wow, the colours are so vivid! Isn't that unusual for botanical illustrations?

pk said...

I think I asked the same question about old colour illustrations (might have been some Japanese prints from dim memory) in another forum some time back and one thing mentioned that made some sense to me (and I don't think that botanical illustrations are particularly affected versus any other old colour image) was that the book is kept closed and is most likely not opened very often so it's protected from the light in that respect.

Also, this is Missouri Bot Gardens and they are both about the most legitimate site online and they have exceptional imaging techniques. If it was any other repository I might be a little suspicious and the fact that they have such a vast collection of superb horticultural books I guess also supports the longevity of old colouring - say, after 1700 anyway.

One other example that comes to mind is , whose stunning work was more than a century before this Himalayan book.

pk said...

The name that got chopped off there was Sybilla Merian.

Just by the by, I didn't adjust these images in any way, save for the 'red berry' detail - but I only hosed out a little of the background snippets. I didn't enhance otherwise.

Alexa Brett said...

That's all very interesting...It does make sense that the lack of exposure to light would have helped preserve their original intensity. Those illustrations are beautiful...Inspired me to go and paint some fruits of my own.
PK, Your blog is always a pleasure. Have a great weekend!

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