The objective of a botanical scientific illustration, referred to as a botanical plate, is to provide a clear and realistic picture of a plant and its construction. While the final result might be a beautiful drawing, its purpose is ultimately educational.

Botanical plates are usually produced for scientific publications and are the result of a collaboration between an illustrator and a scientist. The illustrator’s task is to provide an easily understood visual description of what the scientist has written in the text. Botanical plates can be prepared in a color medium, but for ultimate clarity, the plate is more often drawn with pen and ink, a medium that reproduces well in print.

Examples of botanical plates

botanical plate of California poppy botanical plate of Parry's penstemon botanical plate of jojoba botanical plate of Amaranthus palmeri botanical plate of euphorbia aaron-rossii botanical plate of the saguaro

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