"As a scientific illustrator, one must be able to convey a detailed, clear and accurate depiction of a specimen. Scientific illustrations are an important part of the documentation that makes a specimen museum-quality - along with field and research notes, accession records, photographs, and correspondence about the specimen. A scientific illustration captures information about a plant or animal, information that is often missing from the museum specimen. Scientific illustrations depict the scientifically important features of the organism being studied. They often also describe that organism's natural environment."
(National Museum of American History)
Fig.1 George Venable (1992). Drawing of a Carabid beetle from South America, created for the research of Dr. Terry L. Erwin of the Department of Entomology, courtesy of the Entomology Illustration Archive, NMNH
An illustration of a New Zealand Maori taken from Joachim Heinrich Campe's book Kinder und Jugendschriften (children and youth writings).