Book illustration has existed in some form since the advent of the written word the tradition that has guided modern book illustration originates in western literature dating back to 15th century block books in which the text of a book was carved into the same block as the image these works were . History of 20th century illustration in america the new century would be dominated by american commercial illustration not least because of its powerful publishing and printing industry the introduction of four colour letterpress printing technology made possible the faithful reproduction of a full color painting. History of illustration is an essential step in exposing the centrality of image and text production to human endeavor and more appropriately presents illustration as both connective and generative throughout its history
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