After seeing a wonderful exhibition of the works of J W Lewin in the National Library and then reading a book on his fascinating life, I was struck by how lucky we are to have had his works to give an insight into the nature of the early years in the colony of New South Wales.
Emigrating from London arriving in Sydney in 1800 he was the first professional naturalist, collector and artist in the 12 year old colony.
He painted flora, insects, shells, birds, animals, aboriginals and landscapes of Sydney and the countryside visited with explorers.
He was the first print maker with commissions from many wealthy patrons in Sydney and back in England, where the fascinating nature of the colony was much in demand.
In 1813 he became the first person to print an illustrated book in Australia and that book " Birds of New South Wales" - if you have a copy will bring in the vicinity of $500,000.
Unfortunately he became seriously ill and died at the age of 49 after only 19 years in Australia.
I thought I should again feature one of the two Australian birds that are named in his honour.