I lived in Paris for 5 years in the 1980s and I always looked forward to walking the flea markets, looking for old postcards and costume jewelry. Of course, having grown up in the woods of rural Connecticut, I was also drawn to the romance of the iconic Eiffel Tower. Over the years, I ended up with a small collection of vintage renderings of la Tour Eiffel, a few of which are on display in my home today as a little reminder of my days living in La Ville-Lumière, The City of Light.
I love this printable one – it’s easy to assemble and the colors are just right. I printed it hastily on regular ol’ printer paper to take a quick photo for the blog, but if you used an off-white card stock, I think it would look even better. Using standard-size printer paper, the tower will be about 5.5 by 8 inches.
Download, print and post a picture of the finished product in the comments. I’d love to see where these end up!
Download Page 1
Download Page 2
Posted in free downloads, visit our etsy shops
Tagged antique illustration, art deco, arts & crafts, arts and crafts, digital download, eiffel tower, etsy finds, flea market finds, France, free, free download, illustration, illustrations, la tour eiffel, old illustrations, old paper, paper ephemera, Paris, printable, redbudart, thrift shopping, vintage france, vintage paper, vintage prints, vintage travel
E. A. Séguy produced 11 albums of nature-themed illustrations and patterns, drawing inspiration from butterflies, beetles, dragonflies, flowers, foliage, crystals and animals. I’ve always loved his work, but information on the man himself is difficult to find. This is his entire Wikipedia entry:
Eugène Séguy (1890 – 1 June 1985) was a French entomologist who specialised in Diptera. He held a chair of entomology at the Muséum national d’histoire naturelle in Paris from 1956 -1960. He was a French man known for his textiles work
Mysterious, right? That last sentence doesn’t even have a period! His biography just trails off, waiting to be finished. Ah well, perhaps he would have wanted it that way. Luckily, we have his eye-popping art deco patterns to keep us satisfied in lieu of his personal history. For an interesting article about his printing process (known as pochoir), check out this blog post by a preservation librarian at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio.
I’ve made some digital collage sheets using his Art Deco patterns for scrapbooking and crafts.
Posted in botanicals, visit our etsy shops
Tagged art, art deco, art history, art nouveau, art nouveau illustration, artist, downloads, E. A. Séguy, Eugène Séguy, France, Paris, patterns, pochoir, printable
Pictorial maps have been around for centuries – they are nearly as old as mapmaking itself! Throughout the ages, pictorial maps have been used to show the cuisine of a country, the attractions of a tourist town, the architecture of a big city, or the history of a region. They are also a wonderful opportunity for an artist to show off his signature style, as in this collection from Les Etats-Unis d’Amerique by Dore Ogrizek, published in Paris in 1946, and illustrated by the artist Jacques Liozu.
It’s so interesting to see what Liozu, a French illustrator drawing for a presumably French audience, chooses to highlight – and what he leaves out. There are really only a handful of images that work together in each map to make up the history, geography, popular culture, exports and climate of each state. For example, in his map of Delaware, Liozu includes a beautifully rendered (if grisly) image of a muscular Native American shooting a settler with his bow and arrow at close range with a banner that reads, simply, “1631.” Lewes, Delaware was (apparently!) the site of the first European settlement in the state, founded by the Dutch as a whaling and trading post in 1631. The colony didn’t last long though; a local tribe of Lenape Native Americans wiped out all 32 settlers the following year. Most American students probably won’t know this piece of history, but here it is, captured in a single image and date, in Liozu’s map. It could be a dig at the Dutch – or at the Americans. Or it could just be a piece of Delaware history that seemed important to Liozu at the time.
That’s why these maps are so fun – they’re not just kitschy 1940s Americana; they tell more than one story. Each map is a carefully curated collection, hand-drawn and hand-colored. Try and see if you can decipher the hidden history in each one.
Posted in botanicals
Tagged antique illustration, apples, botanical print, botany, empress josephine, french, lilacs, marie antoinette, natural history, natural science, Pierre-Joseph Redoute, strawberries