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Hands: A Pictorial Archive from Nineteenth-Century Sources (Dover Pictorial Archive) Paperback – October 1, 1985


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Product Details

  • Series: Dover Pictorial Archive
  • Paperback: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Dover Publications; First Edition edition (October 1, 1985)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 048624959X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0486249599
  • Product Dimensions: 0.2 x 9 x 11.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #318,707 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

More than just a five-digit grasping appendage, the extraordinary human hand is capable of a virtually infinite range of expression. Here are over 1,100 images of hands, specially assembled by a noted graphic designer in response to the growing demand for inexpensive and royalty-free art depicting hands.
Chosen for diversity and style as well as usability, these images were carefully culled from thousands of pages of nineteenth-century European and American books and periodicals, some of them very rare. Many of the images represent the height of the wood engraver’s art—and as artists and designers know, for many purposes wood engravings are far superior to photographs.
Here are large hands, small hands, lovely hands, and ugly hands. There are hands resting and active and hands writing, sewing, demonstrating scientific experiments, using tools, performing magic tricks, applying first aid, playing parlor games, and even casting hand shadows on the wall. Hands are displayed to demonstrate palmistry, anatomy, and sign language, or are simply poised to reveal superb form and dignity. In response to the enormous demand, hands with pointing fingers appear in an abundance of sizes, shapes, and shades, and are more or less stylized or realistic to suit every need.
A glance through this magnificent collection will suggest a multitude of royalty-free uses to any artist, designer, or crafter, including collage, decoupage, and advertising art. Whenever the decorative, expressive, or symbolic potential of a hand is needed, you will want to turn to this inexpensive yet comprehensive treasury.
Dover (1985) original publication.

About the Author

Jim Harter is a successful artist and editor of several Dover Pictura CD-ROM Books, including Harter's Picture Archive for Collage and Illustration, Landscapes and Cityscapes for Artists and Craftspeople, Nautical Illustrations, and more.

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

14 of 14 people found the following review helpful By Andrew Dickrell on June 22, 2000
Format: Paperback
An excellent sourcebook for illustrations of hands. Hands doing anything and everything. Keep in mind when the title says 19th century, it literally means 1800-1899, so there will be no modern subjects in the illustrations. No phones, computers, remote controls, etc., but there are hundreds of hands performing 19th century tasks. Also included are prosthetics, a sign language alphabet, palmistry illustrations, medical illustrations and even hands performing shadow puppets. All in all you get a lot of drawings of hands. I found this book better than most clip art books in the fact that the style of the illustrations varies more. There are pen and ink using crosshatching technique and solid, bold line art, so the feel of the illustrations varies more and you are more likely to find what you are looking for. Great Book.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 23, 2000
Format: Paperback
This book must have taken a while to research as it has the most wonderful illustrations of hands. Being an artist I really appreciate this book. The illustrations are perfect for photo- copying and can be used for photo transfer.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By N. Mensinga on March 10, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
hands, hands and more hands in all sorts of positions. if you're looking for hyper realistic hand reference, then this is not what you're looking for. i think it's an awesome reference book!!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Angelique H. on July 1, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book out of sheer curiosity. I was curious how an entire clip art book of hands was possible and, truthfully, I dreaded I made a mistake making this purchase. However, I was wonderfully surprised when this book arrived. Many of the hands featured are operating wonderfully bizarre 19th century machines and mechanisms and there are even some anatomical skeletal hands included. Also, noteworthy, was the sign language, both one-handed and two-handed alphabets. I am very impressed with this book and it is a definite keeper for my mixed media art!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By J. Manning on August 8, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is another wonderful Dover publication, full of tons of useful images of hands. I love having this book to incorporate the hands in my artwork.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Mary Ann on December 20, 2007
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I love these pictures for use in all types of collage work. The "hands" come in a variety of sizes, shapes and actions.
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Need reference for an "Ole Timey" sign saying "This Way!" this is the book you want. I mean it has a lot of other good reference for differently position hands and gestures. For the price, if you're a graphic designer this book will pay it self off after one job.
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Hands: A Pictorial Archive from Nineteenth-Century Sources (Dover Pictorial Archive)
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