Audubon’s larger birds are most sought after

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Audubon wanted to paint his birds life-size

The Bird’s of America is the original book with paintings by Audubon. It contains 435 watercolors divided into five separate volumes.

In this post, we pay attention to the larger birds that Audubon painted. 

15 illustrations can be seen in an image carousel at the end of this post. But first, let’s see why Audubon’s drawings are so special.

Why are Audubon's drawings so special?

Audubon 031 White-headed Eagle Birds of America Museum quality giclée print
Audubon 031 White-headed Eagle

Audubon paintings of birds are often set true-to-life in their natural habitat. His drawings are also very detailed and when working on a major specimen like the White-headed Eagle, he would spend up to four 15-hour days, preparing, studying, and drawing the bird. He based his paintings on his extensive field observations. 

Why do some birds have a twisted pose?

Audubon 431 American Flamingo Birds of America Museum quality giclée print
431 American Flamingo
Audubon 211 Great Blue Heron Birds of America Museum quality giclée print
211 Great Blue Heron

All species were drawn life-size which accounts for the contorted poses of the larger birds as Audubon strove to fit them within the page size. 

Examples are the American Flamingo or the Great Blue Heron 

What materials did Audubon use?

Audubon 386 White Heron Birds of America Museum quality giclée print
Audubon 386 White Heron

Audubon worked primarily with watercolor early on. He added colored chalk or pastel to add softness to feathers, especially those of owls and herons. He employed multiple layers of watercoloring, and sometimes used gouache.

Source of the original

Heritage Prints Birds of America Audubon in Teylers Museum The Netherlands Gies Pluim
Founder Gies Pluim in Teylers Museum

Our Audubon giclée prints are made from a well-preserved original edition of one of the rarest and most expensive books of the world, The Birds of America, owned by the Teylers Museum, the oldest museum of the Netherlands.

Master Copy of all Audubon's images

Heritage Prints has a master copy of all Audubon’s images, but we do not have every certified facsimile giclée print in stock.

If you cannot find a specific work on the website, please contact us directly and we will start the rigorous process of printing your individual facsimile.