There is so much to say regarding the true beauty of the anatomy of living things and that is a large part of what this blog is meant for. I thought I might start off by showing some illustrations from my all-time favorite animal anatomy monograph.
This is Boas and Paulli’s “The Elephant’s Head”, published in two volumes (Volume 1 in 1908 and Volume 2 in 1925). Words cannot express how much this monograph has been an inspiration to me. Not so much because of the way it is written, but because of the hundreds of absolutely gorgeous illustrations it contains. A large part of my research entails craniofacial musculature of large mammals and this monograph is a large part of the reason why (it is mainly about elephant craniofacial anatomy, but also has descriptions and illustrations of many other mammals as well). The amount of incredible detail in illustrating the muscles (bellies/fiber direction) as well as bone, ligaments, and fascia is astounding and something I can only dream of aspiring to even creating a fraction of its beauty in my own research and illustration. I’ll let some of these example images speak for themselves (all from Boas and Paulli, 1908).
(Note: I’ll probably reference this monograph time and time again throughout my posts on this blog, so be forewarned.)
There is SO much more I could show you all. But in any case, this is one of the most important examples I can think of dealing with the great effect of integration of anatomy and illustration. It is something I hope we see a lot more of in the future of our field!
Boas, J. E. V. & Paulli, S. (1908). The elephant’s head: studies in the comparative anatomy of the organs of the head of the Indian elephant and other mammals: Part I. Copenhagen: Folio, Gustav Fisher.
Boas, J. E. V. & Paulli, S. (1925). The elephant’s head: studies in the comparative anatomy of the organs of the head of the Indian elephant and other mammals: Part II. Copenhagen: Folio, Gustav Fisher.