Happy Birthday Gustave Dore
Dante sets out on his journey. (llustration to Dante's Divine Comedy, Inferno by Gustave Doré. Plate 1: Dante in the Dusky Woods)
I think, historically, there's is an extremely fine line separating fine art and illustration. Currently, we are taught that the two are quite incompatible. But as the patina of time washes over all our graphic efforts, the line begins to fade away. Gustave Doré was basically an extremely prolific illustrator yet we are able to view his efforts within the continuum of art over the past century and a half. He was part of the artistic fabric of his world. He just happened to function in a economic ecosystem that looks a lot like today's illustration market: making connections with clients and constantly, joyously hustling his work.