There are, of course, many reasons for illustration’s fading stature other than the commercial world’s hard-nosed preference for photography over the arty vagueness of hand-rendered imagery. The ubiquity of software that allows graphic designers to generate their own imagery is another factor, as is the rise of illustration stock libraries. Yet perhaps illustration’s current status owes most to its near-total eclipse by graphic design. To understand the contemporary state of illustration, we need to look at its relationship with graphic design.
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