Illustrations were essential in spreading new scientific and medical ideas and it was often the case that new developments in the sciences were accompanied by corresponding developments in illustrative techniques. These techniques are the subject of Seeing Is Believing, which complements an exhibition of the same name on view from October 23, 1999-February 19, 2000 at The New York Public Library's Humanities and Social Sciences Library.

scientific illustration, medical illustration, illustration process
As illustrations became essential in spreading new scientific and medical ideas, the developments in the sciences were accompanied by corresponding developments in illustrative techniques. These techniques are the subject of Seeing Is Believing, which complements an exhibition of the same name on view from October 23, 1999-February 19, 2000 at The New York Public Library's Humanities and Social Sciences Library. Seeing Is Believing explores how scientists have relied on images to convey important and complex scientific ideas with clarity, dimension, and breadth that is not possible with text alone. Advances in illustration techniques -- relief printing, intaglio printing, planographic printing, and photography -- attempted to meet the need for clarity and accuracy in relating new theories, observations, and experiments. A simple woodcut diagram of concentric circles showing the outlying planets moving around the "Sol" at its center, from Copernicus's revolutionary De revolutionibus orbium coelestium (1543), illustrates his argument that the planets revolved around the sun, not the Earth, as had been commonly accepted in the Middle Ages. Vesalius's groundbreaking De humani corporis fabrica (1543) featured for the first time illustrations based on close examination of human anatomy. The beautiful hand-colored woodcut, the title-page illustration of a dissection, is from a first edition copy presented by Vesalius to Emperor Charles V. Featured in the site are illustrated works by Joannes de Sacro Bosco, Nicolaus Copernicus, Andreas Vesalius, Maria Sibylla Merian, Edward Lear, Pietro Andrea Mattioli, Leonhart Fuchs, Robert Boyle, Arnaud Éloi Gautier-d'Agoty, Johann Elert Bode, James Gillray, Benjamin Smith Barton, Charles Joseph Hullmandel, Louis Agassiz, Jean Marc Bourgery, John James Audubon, Étienne Léopold Trouvelot, William Cheselden, Louis Jacques Mandé Daguerre, Anna Atkins, and Marie Curie. Illustration Processes Overview

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