Philadelphia: J.J. Audubon, c. 1848. Proof Plate. single sheet. A fine and scarce original lithograph printed on crude fibrous stock. Octavo (11 x 7.5 inches). Drawn on stone by Wm. E. Hitchcock after painting by J.W. Audubon. Printed by JT Bowen.
A scarce and fine example of a plate pulled to check both the quality of the lithographic image and the alignment of the letterpress text for title, numbering and artistic credit prior to pulling for the final production for the subscribers of the First Royal Octavo Edition of John James Audubon and the Reverend John Bachman's The Quadrupeds of North America produced in Philadelphia between 1849 and 1854.
As proof plates are the first printing pulled from the inked image drawn on the limestone tablet, they display the clearest, most intricate and refined details of the composition and represent the finest example of the artist's creation. Once the proofs were accepted, the final plates were then pulled on a fine rag stock, and dried. The litho-tinted screen was dropped in to create atmospheric perspective and lend depth. The entire composition was then ready to receive watercolor tint for the intended subject and landscape.
Due to the informal and transient nature of a proof plate, which generally was discarded after the press run very few have survived in this fine condition. Fine. Item #6323