Discovering and recording the life of North America
Maria Sibylla Merian. Histoire générale des insectes de Surinam et de toute l¹Europe. Paris: Desnos, 1771.
Maria Sibylla Merian (1647-1717) learned to paint from her stepfather, the still life artist Jacob Marrel.
When living in Amsterdam she saw a collection of South American natural history specimens, and was so much interested that she traveled to Surinam with one of her daughters to study the native flowers and insects on the spot.
Mark Catesby (1679-1749) made two lengthy journeys to America, from 1710-1719 and 1722 to 1726.
He collected natural history specimens and made drawings and watercolors of plants, reptiles, animals and fish, then engraved his own pictures and published them for the first time in 1731.
Mark Catesby. Natural History of Carolina, Florida, and the Bahama Islands ... London: Printed for Benjamin White ... , 1771.
The work was successful and there was a second volume in 1743, followed by a second and third edition of both volumes.
Alexander von Humboldt. Voyage de Humboldt et Bonpland. Observations de Zoologie et d'anatomie comparée. Paris: F. Schoell [et al.], 1811.
He began his career in the Prussian Department of Mines
gained permission to visit the Spanish territories in Central and South America
From 1799 he and the French botanist Aimé Bonpland traveled from Venezuela to Mexico
Humboldt published the results of the journey in Paris over a period of 29 years
John James Audubon and the Rev. John Bachman. The Viviparous Quadrupeds of North America. New York: J.J. Audubon, 1845-1848.
important as an artist, especially of birds
collaborated with the Rev. John Bachman, an authority on animals, to produce The Viviparous Quadrupeds of North America
Audubon who showed the diversity of US Birds and wildlife
William Holbrook Beard
Roger Tory Peterson
Peterson was born in Jamestown, New York .
After graduating from high school‚ Peterson moved to New York City ‚ where he attended the Art Students League (1927-1928) and the National Academy of Design (1929-1931).
He then taught science and art at the Rivers School in Brookline, Massachusetts .
In 1934 he published his seminal Guide to the Birds , the first modern field guide , which sold out its first printing of 2‚000 copies in one week, and subsequently went through 5 editions.
He edited or wrote many of the volumes in the Peterson Field Guide series on topics ranging from rocks and minerals to beetles to reptiles .
He developed the Peterson Identification System, and is known for the clarity of both his illustrations of field guides and his delineation of relevant field marks.