Atlas Obscura: See 500 Years of Artful Nature Illustrations

Atlas Obscura: See 500 Years of Artful Nature Illustrations. “Now, the collaborative Biodiversity Heritage Library—a digital archive compiled by a consortium of natural-history libraries—has released over 150,000 artworks of the natural world, allowing public access to one of the largest illustrated compendiums of life on Earth. Years before wildlife photographers began to catalogue the world’s egrets, cephalopods, and rafflesia corpse flowers, artists like Elizabeth Gould were portraying species with illustrations, often reprinted as lithographs for the public.”

Kottke: Database of old book illustrations

Thank you John S. for the pointer to this from Kottke: Database of old book illustrations. “Here’s an enormous library of thousands of old book illustrations, with searchable name, artist, source, date, which book it was in, etc. There are also a number of collections to browse through, and each are tagged with multiple keywords so you can also get lost in there in that manner.” John mentioned that this site is an absolute timesink. He’s not wrong.

Boing Boing: AI generates old-fashioned zoological illustrations of beetles

Boing Boing: AI generates old-fashioned zoological illustrations of beetles. “These beetles do not exist: Confusing Coleopterists is an AI trained on illustrations from zoological textbooks. The extreme formality of this art genre, and its placement within the public domain, makes it uniquely apt to the medium of generative adversarial networks: ‘Results were interesting and mesmerising.'”

DigitalArts: TikTok and how to use it for illustration success

DigitalArts: TikTok and how to use it for illustration success. “With Instagram doing its best to throttle visibility, more and more digital artists wanting to jump ship to another platform find themselves at a loose end. Twitter was an increasingly popular choice, until the little blue bird began to heavily compress images, whilst Facebook continues its steady decline into a graveyard for artistic exposure. A surprising option though comes in the form of an app best known for music and skits, closer to the dearly departed Vine rather than something like ArtStation. We’re of course talking about much-talked about app of the moment TikTok; less talked about though is how some illustrators are finding a fanbase on the platform through an interesting symbiosis of sound and vision.”

MakeUseOf: 5 Free Stock Illustration Sites to Download Copyright-Free Designs and Vectors

MakeUseOf: 5 Free Stock Illustration Sites to Download Copyright-Free Designs and Vectors. “You can always grab real stock photographs, but plain stock images seem a bit stuffy and old-school now, don’t they? Illustrations add that extra zing to seem modern and trendy. These portals will give you customizable style-packs as well as images that concentrate on diversity and inclusiveness.”

Cornell: Botanical illustration pioneer goes from obscurity to online

Cornell: Botanical illustration pioneer goes from obscurity to online. “Dating back to 1826 and brimming with meticulous descriptions and vivid watercolor illustrations, Nancy Anne Kingsbury Wollstonecraft’s manuscript, ‘Specimens of the Plants and Fruits of the Island of Cuba,’ never saw print in her lifetime despite her attempts at publication. Nearly two centuries later, the lush life she captured can now be admired and downloaded from HathiTrust, where it was shared by Cornell University Library.”

Clements Library Chronicles: Announcing the Illustrated Manuscripts Project

Thanks to John O. for bringing this to my attention. From the Clements Library Chronicles: Announcing the Illustrated Manuscripts Project. “For over 15 years, as Clements Library staff have processed manuscript collections, read letters, and hunted for information, we’ve also been documenting the hand-made drawings that appear throughout the Manuscripts Division. To date we’ve identified over 2,500 images from nearly 500 separate collections. Scribbled in margins, sketched on envelopes, pasted into volumes, these illustrations are largely hidden within larger bodies of papers and therefore commonly uncataloged, their research value untapped. In January of 2018 we launched the Illustrated Manuscripts Project in the hopes of changing that.”

Galway Daily: Amazing new database with pics of 18th and 19th Century Ireland launched

Galway Daily: Amazing new database with pics of 18th and 19th Century Ireland launched. “How was Ireland depicted in illustrations produced by travellers from 1680 to 1860? A new database of images drawn from travel accounts answers this question. Based on years of research by a group of investigators at NUI Galway led by Professor Jane Conroy, Ireland Illustrated is now available to view online.”

Jalopnik: Now’s Your Chance To Get A Poster Featuring Literally Every Single Toyota Ever Sold Here

Jalopnik: Now’s Your Chance To Get A Poster Featuring Literally Every Single Toyota Ever Sold Here. “Artist Darren Zayman just completed a two-year project to draw all 269 body variants of every single Toyota ever sold in the United States, and even a few that may not have been sold here. … Zayman, a 42-year-old web designer, began his frankly insane journey almost 20 years ago, when he started drawing every car featured on his website that sold parts for rear-wheel-drive Japanese cars, which started as ToyotaReference.com. … And faced with his new website… Zayman has begun an even larger quest. He aims to illustrate every single Japanese car ever sold in the U.S.”

Mental Floss: The Library of Congress Wants Your Help Identifying World War I-Era Political Cartoons

Mental Floss: The Library of Congress Wants Your Help Identifying World War I-Era Political Cartoons. “The Library of Congress just debuted its new digital innovation lab, an initiative that aims to improve upon its massive archives and use them in creative ways. Its first project is Beyond Words, a digitization effort designed to make the research library’s historical newspaper collection more search-friendly. It aims to classify and tag historical images from World War I-era newspapers, identifying political cartoons, comics, illustrations, and photos within old news archives. The images come from newspapers included in Chronicling America, the library’s existing newspaper digitization project.”

Stockio: Free Photos, Videos, Icons, Illustrations, and Fonts For Your Projects (Noupe)

Noupe: Stockio: Free Photos, Videos, Icons, Illustrations, and Fonts For Your Projects. “This supply is pretty large for a free service. However, what really makes Stockio stand out from its competition is that it’s not limited to photos. The service also offers high-quality vector graphics, videos, icons, and even fonts. This gives you a central starting point for any kind of media that you could need throughout the course of a project.”

Webcomic fans, rejoice: Library of Congress is launching a new archive for you (Washington Post)

Washington Post: Webcomic fans, rejoice: Library of Congress is launching a new archive for you. “‘Dinosaur Comics!’ ‘Hyperbole and a Half’ and ‘xkcd’ are all coming to the Library of Congress. The library will announce Tuesday that the Webcomics Web Archive is officially launching at loc.gov as part of its growth in ‘born-digital’ collections.”

Libraries of Britain, France Collaborating on Illuminated Manuscript Web Site

If you like illuminated manuscripts you’ll love this new project announced by the libraries of Britain and France: “In a ground-breaking new collaborative project the national libraries of Britain and France will work together to create two innovative new websites that will make 800 manuscripts decorated before the year 1200 available freely. The Bibliothèque nationale de France will create a new bilingual website that will allow side-by-side comparison of 400 manuscripts from each collection, selected for their beauty and interest.”

British Library Updates Catalogue of Illuminated Manuscripts

The British Library has updated its Catalogue of Illuminated Manuscripts. “The Bedford Hours (Add MS 18850), one of the most magnificent illuminated manuscripts in the British Library, has already been fully digitised. It has also now been added to the Catalogue of Illuminated Manuscripts, with a selection of its most magnificent illuminations.”

New Archive of Victorian-Era Illustrated Shakespeare

The blog Cardiff Shakespeare has a quick writeup on a Shakespeare archive called the Victorian Illustrated Shakespeare Archive. I think it’s a longstanding project that was finally launched, but mentions of it have been floating around for a couple years. Either way well-worth looking at. “This is a valuable resource featuring over 3000 illustrations from the four major illustrated editions of Shakespeare’s Complete Works in the Victorian period.”