More color illustrations from books: 1912-2010

Here is another post featuring color illustrations of the California condor. These 8 artworks are from books in my library and are shown in chronological order.

The 1st illustration deserves some explanation. It comes from a book originally published in 1903 (the edition in my library is the second, from 1912). At this time a book printed in color was the exception rather than the rule.

The author states the book’s purpose in the preface:

Identification of the bird in the bush is its sole end; an end, however, which we trust will prove but the beginning of a new and potent interest in nature.

The author also explains the illustrations:

The illustrations in this volume are designed to aid the student in identifying birds in their haunts by giving, in color, those markings which most quickly catch the eye. They do not pretend to be perfect reproductions of every shade and tint of the plumage of the species they figure, but aim to present a bird’s characteristic colors as they appear when seen at a distance.

With that, here is the California condor:
01 Chapman 1912
Artist: Chester A Reed. Book: Chapman, Frank M. Color key to North American birds. Revised edition. Appleton. 1912.

The remaining images here speak very well for themselves. Source information follows each one.

02 Wetmore 1937
Artist: Allan Brooks. Book: Wetmore, Alexander. The eagles, hawks, and vultures. In The book of birds. Gilbert Hovey Grosvenor and Alexander Wetmore, editors. National Geographic. 1937.

03 Lloyd & Lloyd 1970
Artist: Ken Lilly. Book: Lloyd, Glenys, and Derek Lloyd. Birds of prey. Grosset and Dunlap. 1970.

04 Conrad & Mortensen 1978
Artist: Bob Lapsley. Book: Conrad, Barnaby, and Niels Mortensen. Endangered. Putnam. 1978. (The image is from the book’s dust jacket.)

05 Leahy 1982
Artist: Gordon Morrison. Book: Leahy, Christopher W. The birdwatcher’s companion. Hill and Wang. 1982.

06 Anderson 1983
Artist: Uncredited. Book: Anderson, John G T. A coloring book of birds of California. Bellerophon. 1983.

07 Ferguson-Lees & Faull 1992
Artist: Emma Faull. Book: Ferguson-Lees, James, and Emma Faull. Endangered birds. Philip. 1992.

08 Solnit & Caron 2010
Artist: Mona Caron. Book: Solnit, Rebecca, and Mona Caron. A California bestiary. Heyday. 2010.

That last book, A California Bestiary, is a wonderful collection of art and essays about 12 notable species. This beautiful book is a worthwhile investment.

For more posts with California condor art, including color illustrations from books, scroll to the top of this page and click on the Art/Craft tag on the right.