At Hanalei Publishing, we are dedicated to publishing unique products related to the natural history of the Hawaiian islands. Our first project is a series of fine art greeting cards: The Isabella Sinclair Collection.
In this series, we re-introduce parts of an important, rare work, published in 1885, Indigenous flowers of the Hawaiian Islands
; this was the first book to feature color plates of the Hawaiian flowers and plants.
Isabella Sinclair was the niece of Elizabeth McHutcheson Sinclair, who bought the island of Niihau from King Kamehameha IV for ten thousand dollars in gold in 1864. Isabella painted watercolor images of many of the plants and flowers she encountered when she moved to Kauai after her marriage to her cousin, Francis Sinclair, in 1863.
Isabella was born in Scotland in 1840 and was known to have artistic talent from a young age. Prior to moving to Hawaii, she spent part of her childhood in New Zealand where she developed an interest in botany. After moving to Kauai, she became interested in the plant life near the Waimea Canyon and the Olokele regions of Kauai.
She painted a series of watercolors and identified the plants of these areas with their botanical names, habitat and Hawaiian names. She documented the botanical names by sending specimens to the Director of the Kew Gardens in London, who, in turn, encouraged her to publish her work. The Kew director assisted her with arranging publication when she visited London in 1885. Only 500 copies of the book were printed, and today, an extant copy is very rare.
Our Isabella Sinclair Collection
brings some of the images from this important early work on Hawaiian botany back to life with a series of eight fine art greeting cards.
The Isabella Sinclair Collection
cards are museum-quality 5 x 7 fine art cards, printed in the USA on very heavy card stock, with archival quality inks.
We hope you enjoy rediscovering these lost images as much as we have in working to bring them back to life