What are scientific botanical illustrations?
Botanical illustration, in contrast to flower painting, which only exists to be appreciated, is the accurate graphical representation of plants and plant features for scientific purposes (Rix, 2012).
Botanical illustrations place more of an emphasis on science than on aesthetics. A plant is always accurately and realistically represented in botanical illustrations. It should emphasize a plant’s distinctive characteristics that help botanists recognize one plant from another. You can use these illustrations to design floral resume templates and floral birthday cards.
The primary determinant of a botanical illustration’s scientific validity is not the medium the artist uses or the technology employed to illustrate it, but rather the artist’s knowledge of plant morphology.
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The goal of botanical illustration is to create a picture that is not only aesthetically beautiful but also accurate, thorough, and species-level recognizable from a botanical perspective. These pieces bridge the gap between science and art.
What’s required of a botanical illustration?
Anyone looking to get knowledge in these matters needs to interact with both newly emerging plant shoots and mature, fading plants. Because a person who has only encountered a shoot cannot understand the nature of plants, nor can he recognize a young shoot if he has only seen mature plants.
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Botanical illustrations should be based on:
keeping an eye on any living plant matter
if possible, reconstitution of dried plant material
examining plant characteristics under a microscope
precise measurements of the plant’s many components
Collaborate with knowledgeable botanists who can offer essential guidance over what elements to emphasize. A thorough understanding of the morphology of the plant is essential since shapes and forms can assist identify one plant from another. identifying the essential (unique) characteristics of the plant at various phases of its life cycle a connection to a herbarium specimen (when it’s a part of a scientific collection) and details about the plant’s growth and habitat Professional botanical illustrators who work for botanical gardens and specialized publications frequently set standards for contemporary botanical art.
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Regarding the RHS Botanical Art Show, this is what the Royal Horticultural Society specifies as the standard for botanical illustrations. The goal of botanical illustration is to accurately capture the shape, color, personality, and other details of a plant, down to the species or cultivar level. Scientific correctness and aesthetic appeal are successfully merged in the best floral illustrations. It must accurately and thoroughly depict a plant so that it may be identified and separated from other species.
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REFERENCE: worldwide collaboration between botanical illustrators and botanic gardens
Illustrations by Alice R. Tangerini from the Smithsonian Institution’s Department of Botany’s Catalog of Botanical Illustrations, along with a description of her work
The Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew’s botanical illustrator Lucy T. Smith creates scientific illustrations.
Visit Kew Gardens to learn more about award-winning botanical illustrator Lucy Smith’s line drawings.
The person who depicts all plants in the world is Lucy Smith; watch the brief BBC film of her at work at Kew.
Ten Tips for Botanical Illustration: Drawing Plants (Plant Talk April 1999) Rosemary Wise, a botanical artist engaged by Oxford University’s Department of Plant Sciences since 1965, offers advice on what is necessary PLUS The Natural History Museum’s collection of contemporary botanical illustrations