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Stella & Rose's Books

Specialists in Rare & collectable books

Art of the New Naturalists

Art of the New Naturalists
by Peter Marren, Robert Gillmor and Clifford and Rosemary Ellis. Published 2009

This book explores the artwork of the New Naturalist series of books. If you are unfamiliar with the New Naturalist titles, they are a series of Natural History books. The subjects range from 'Butterflies' which was the first book published in 1945 to 'Slugs and Snails' published in 2016.

The books are much sought after and are collected as much as for their artwork as for their content.

Until 1985 the artwork for the dustjackets was designed by Clifford and Rosemary Ellis, coincidentally they also created posters for London Transport. Since 1985 the artwork has been designed by Robert Gillmor.

Each jacket really is a work of art with second hand copies of the rarer volumes commanding high prices.

In the book each dustjacket is accompanied by up to a page of text describing the design process including colours used and the paper the original designs were printed on etc.

I have chosen my favourite dustjackets but there are so many to choose from that it was quite a hard task!

No 32. Trees, Woods and Man. Pub.1956:

Not only is this one of my favourites but it was also a favourite of the editor and the artists.

No 53. The Lake District. Pub 1973:

I love that this pays tribute to William Wordsworth.

No 57. British Seals Pub.1974:

The colours used in this dustjacket give a real feeling of movement.

No.74 Ferns. Pub. 1988:

The design for Ferns was originally submitted using felt tips.

No. 86 Lichens. Pub. 2000:

Can you spot the black and white moth camouflaged against the lichen?

No. 94 Seashore. Pub. 2004:

This was the third book using linocuts in its design and since then all dustjackets have been designed using linocuts.

Contributed by Theresa

(Published 20th Jan 2017)

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