Vintage Color Illustrations From The Emerald City of Oz

Illustrator, John R. Neill, was behind all the artwork of Frank L Baum’searly 20th century publications of “The Wizard of Oz” series.  I love these colorful, whimsical antique book illustrations.  And there are so many to see in the public domain!  Vintage children’s book illustration holds a unique place in art history and many of the best are residing in the public domain right now, making them free to use in online courses, blog posts, Powerpoint presentations, decoupage craft projects, inspire digital art and animation, homemade bookmaking, t-shirt designs, video game concepts, and many more personal and commercial projects.

The following gallery are Neill’s color illustrations from the 1910 publication of “The Emerald City of Oz.”  This book was heavily inspired by Baum’s stay in Coronado and one of the best Wizard of Oz gift shops can be found at Coronado’s Hotel Del.  Being a San Diego native and Oz fan, I always thought that was kind of cool, and I visited that shop every time I visited in December to see the hotel’s gargantuan Christmas tree.

Share these images with friends and fam who love Wizard of Oz too and visit the sources page for more great artworks and books in the public domain.

This public domain Emerald City gallery is also a helpful resource for teachers, art instructors, online teachers, art history/pop culture history/etc courses, filmmakers, historians, students, artists, designers, product developers, stationery ideas, story flashcards, set design, and many more projects.

The entire book is available to read online for FREE!


Free Vintage Christmas Illustrations in Color: From Vintage Children’s Books!

The holiday season is just around the corner.  It’s a non-stop seasonal creating fest from Halloween to Valentine’s Day, so I’ve been sifting through digital public domain archives, bidding on vintage postcard lots on eBay, and going through my own vintage print collection to curate image galleries for the 2015 season.  The holidays are full of inspiration for new DIY Christmas tree ornaments, gift wrap and textile design, ebooks, recipe books, decor and Etsy products.  The following vintage color images are from antique children’s and fiction genre books and feature illustrations from E. Florence Mason, A.A Milne and Jessie Wilcox Smith.  Share online or use in your educational and creative projects!



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Public Domain Spotlight: David Cory’s Children’s Stories PLUS Free Vintage Color Illustrations

I stumbled upon David’s Cory’s colorful 1920s children’s books while researching new vintage content.  He’s penned such imaginative works as The Magic Soap Bubble, The Jumble Book, Billy Bunny and Daddy Fox, and The Little Jack Rabbit.  All of which are represented in the vintage illustration gallery below!  Cory was producing these stories around 1920 and were illustrated by such artists as M. L Kirk, S. Aspell, E.J Babock, Hugh Spencer, E.I Jones, P.H Webb, and H.S Barbour.  These stories and vintage color illustrations are all in the Public Domain.  Share these antique book illustrations online, add them to your blog, create unique room decorations, school supply designs, or re-imagine these works for video game plots, storytelling games, screenplays, arts and crafts, and many more creative projects.

More Creative Ideas

Stories and illustrations in the public domain hold a wealth of possibilities for creative projects.  Along with the aforementioned ideas above, these vintage illustrations from classic illustrators make excellent materials for decoupage, Christmas ornaments, antique style collages, digital art, and inspiration for fine art paintings.  Try cutting out the characters to create classic or digital stop-motion animations, miniature theater sets, shadow box art, and dioramas.

Free Vintage Illustrations of Ducks and Ducklings

I recently took a part-time job at a fabric and craft store.  Now I’m surrounded by even more inspiration for creative projects and this site.  There are bolts of  fabric prints that feature classic vintage illustrations in the public domain, plus racks of boxes, journals, and specialty craft paper printed with antique art.  And after coming across a duck-inspired craft kit for kids, I’ve had duckies on the brain.  Ducks and ducklings are great crafting subjects too for Christmas decor, Nature themed collages, baby room decor, DIY greeting cards, and many more creative projects.

This latest gallery is curated from a variety of vintage children’s books and scientific illustrations.  Researching and sharing images in the public domain is super fun if you love history too. Many of these images were produced by renown illustrators like Arthur Rackham and writer/illustrator Beatrix Potter!

Kate Greenaway’s “Apple Pie” – The Complete Book!

I’ve been on a vintage children’s book kick lately.  Some of the most imaginative illustrations and color palettes can be seen in the illustrations of yesterday.  “Apple Pie” is probably the most popular work by Kate Greenaway. This colorful alphabet picture book can be re-imagined into new graphics for teachers, back to school decoupage projects, coloring book pages, flashcards, or lace it up the pages with colorful yarn to make a complete book once again.

These images are in the public domain and are free to use without permission.  Add this vintage children’s book classic today to your digital library.  These free vintage illustrations are also great for crafting, Etsy products, antique style decor and gifts, and more creative projects.  There are tons of free artistic and educational resources online for teachers, students, illustrators, daycare providers, photographers, and virtually everyone.  Stay tuned for more classic and rare vintage children’s books in the public domain!

Free Public Domain Illustrations from a Vintage Children’s Cookbook (1905)

I had been on the hunt for a good vintage children’s cookbook to find more playful pictures of baking, food, and family.  I came across this children’s ‘First’ cookbook from 1905 published by an American flour company.  The following book illustrations are now out of copyright and would be useful for a variety of different personal and commercial projects, like Etsy products, greeting cards, blog images and social media content, decoupage, vintage kitchen decor, and DIY stationery.

Crafting with Vintage Cookbooks for Kids!

These charming illustrations inspire lots of ideas for culinary-themed crafting.  Here are a few more to consider.

  • Assemble these images to make your own custom gift wrap pattern online.
  • Make your own canvas prints online to turn these images into kitchen and breakfast nook decor
  • Create your own decoupage coaster set
  • Print out and laminate to create cute place mats for the kids at brunch

More FREE Vintage Victorian Birthday Illustrations for DIY Cards and Decor

September is a pretty big month for birthdays, so why not create whimsical birthday greeting and decor from birthday illustrations in the public domain. There are a lot of great vintage inspired birthday ideas and antique style crafts projects to draw inspiration from too!  Decoupaging Edwardian birthday illustrations on mason jars, old antique night stands, and discarded coffee tables is a creative way to dress up a vintage birthday party for less.  Plus you make charming little name cards, gift tags, screen prints, party invites, wall art, and printed party favor bags with these old fashioned birthday images.

Throwing a Birthday party for a history buff?  Creating unique birthday cards from antique cards in the public domain is a cool way to make the perfect card for someone who loves reading about and watching documentaries about history.  Use these for your commercial projects too, like vintage inspired keepsake boxes and antique style napkins and stationery.