John James Audubon
John James Audubon (The American Woodsman) was born in 1785 and was the son of a French naval officer. He grew up in France but at the age of 18 travelled to America to live. After the failure of his many business ventures, he became bankrupt and decided to follow his love of nature; drawing and observing birds. Adventure in his blood, he set off into the wild with a mission to identify and paint all of America’s bird species. Years later, he travelled to England where a publisher put out his ‘Birds of America’ collection which became an overnight success! By 1831, he became known as the leading naturalist of his country and one of the “men of science”. Now considered the archetype of wildlife illustration, his work contains 435 life-size watercolours of stunning illustrations and intricate studies showing all different varieties of North American birds. John James Audubon is celebrated for giving the world the first great collection of American birds shown in their natural environments.
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