Why illustrations?

• clear depictions of artifact form, workmanship and diagnostic and manufacture elements
• no loss of interpretation due to material color or defects and other distractions
• photos can distort size and shape
• illustrated images reproduce better than photos
• no camera and lighting setup
• illustrations add variety, professional appearance, clear depiction of vital
artifactual attributes important to researchers

I create two kinds of black and white line illustrations; precise and interpreted.

Precise illustrations are not art. Instead, they are a graphical representation of detailed information much like a map. They are not the illustrator's "impressions" of the artifacts.

Interpreted illustrations depict an artifact or a scene with some level of creativity. Usually rendered from photographs or textual accounts, the interpreted illustration eliminates confusing or distracting elements like shadows, blemishes or color. These illustrations are perfect for journals, magazines, brochures, newsletters or other popular media. Illustrations also offer variety and interest to the viewers and readers.

Photographs in reports are often the best way to depict an artifact. But color photographs in reports can be expensive and a black and white copy of a color page immediately loses clarity.

Here's three images of the same Clovis point. The professionally lit and arranged photograph on the left captures all the flake attributes. But once copied, the image loses its appeal and contrast. The illustration on the right captures and enhances the flaking attributes and can be repeatedly copied without loss of information.

Clovis x 3

The images below show an Athabascan dipnet woven with spruceroot. The photograph suffers from contrasting and confusing background. The pen and ink illustration removes that clutter and focuses on the artifact's attribute without distraction.

net x 2

The newsprint photograph below, on the left, suffers from a blurring of detail. The illustration on the right exaggerates and enhances contrasting elements. Notice too that in the illustration, the ceramic pot at the top of the skull has been moved and reduced to focus attention on the burial.

peru burial 2
support image