Illustration

200,000 Free Nature Illustrations from the Biodiversity Heritage Library

Discover this free catalog of nature illustrations dating back hundreds of years and boost your creativity

The Biodiversity Heritage Library has been dubbed the world’s largest open-access digital library for resources on natural history and biodiversity. Right now, the world is experiencing a major extinction crisis and widespread climate change.

Aware that many heads are better than one, the Biodiversity Heritage Library was launched to pull together resources from libraries all around the world, pushing to advance global research by digitizing their collections and provide free worldwide access to its catalog.

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But this doesn’t just stop at providing content for research purposes, it is also a fantastic source of inspiration for creatives and a great education tool. In 2011, the staff of BHL began to upload illustrations, created over the past 500 years, from books in their collections.

Now, the @BioDivLibrary collection on Flickr offers up more than 200,000 nature images for free, specially curated by book, subject, and contributor. You will find a mix of different albums–from “The trees of Great Britain and Ireland” to “The game-birds of India, Burma, and Ceylon”. Check out the selection we’ve made below to get a taste of what’s on offer.

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