Birds have fascinated people since the stone age. The oldest bird art dates from 15,000 B.C and is in Lascaux Cave in France. Part-bird, part-human forms convey super human abilities, such as vision (bird heads) and speed (wings). Ancient Egyptians considered birds winged souls. Goldfinches in illuminated manuscripts in the Middle Ages were associated with baby Jesus. Nowadays, bird symbolism is still important - birds of prey such as eagles symbolise power, doves symbolise peace and owls convey wisdom.
The realistic illustration of birds become popular in the 1700s as scientists became concerned with classifying species and understanding the natural world. Some of the greatest wildlife artists, such as John James Audubon and John Gould, spent years illustrating birds.
Our fine art prints of birds are based on vintage illustrations from the period 1600 to 1920. We make them with superb pigmented inks and heavyweight 300gsm German fine art paper made from 100% cotton and spring water.