Our Top 5 Most Important Infographics Of All Time

Infographics are not a new concept. Throughout time images have been used to communicate information in an easy-to-digest format. Some of these images have become a huge part of how we understand and teach complex information today. Here’s our list of the most important infographics of all time.
1. Evolutionary Tree Of Life (Charles Darwin, c.1837)


Image Source: Natural History Museum

Darwin’s first sketch of ‘The Evolutionary Tree Of Life’ was found in one of his notebooks from 1837. Darwin was the first to use the tree to illustrate the concept of evolution, his theory is now the basis of how we understand evolution.
“As buds give rise by growth to fresh buds, and these, if vigorous, branch out and overtop on all sides many a feebler branch, so by generation I believe it has been with the great Tree of Life, which fills with its dead and broken branches the crust of the earth, and covers the surface with its ever-branching and beautiful ramifications.” – Charles Darwin
2. Periodic Table (Dmitri Mendeleev, 1869)


Image Source: Time Magazine

Dmitri Mendeleev was a Russian chemist who arranged the 63 known elements into a periodic table based on their atomic mass. Mendeleev’s ‘The Periodic Table’ not only illustrates the individual elements but it demonstrates their similarities and how they interact. This infographic has withstood the test of time and is now one of science’s most important tools. The periodic table plays a main role in how we understand and teach science today.
3. Colour Wheel (Moses Harris, 1869)


Image Source: Imprint

Moses Harris’ ‘Colour Wheel’ from ‘The Natural System Of Colours” was the first full-colour circle. The image suggested an infinite colour continuum by demonstrating the possibility of creating 18 colours from mixing what he called the three ‘primitive’ colours – Blue, yellow and red. He also showed how black could be produced by combining all three primary colours. The colour wheel is now used extensively in the practice and teaching of art.
4. Helocentric Universe (Nicolaus Copernicus, 1543)


Image Source: Visualising Data: Seeing Is Believing

In the book ‘On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Bodies, Copernicus proposed that the Sun, rather than the Earth, was the center of the Solar System. This model is called a heliocentric system.
“In the midst of all dwells the Sun. For who could set this luminary in another or better place in this most glorious temple, than whence he can at one and the same time brighten the whole.” – Nicolaus Copernicus
5. Vitruvian Man (Leonardo Da Vinci, c.1487)


Image Source: BBC : Science & Nature

Leonardo Di Vinci’s ‘Vitruvian Man’ and the notes that go alongside it, show how he understood the proportions of the human body. It demonstrates how each separate part is a fraction of the whole. Di Vinci spent much of his life searching for connections between the structure of the human body, and other patterns in nature. He proclaimed that “Man is the model of the world.”
Any we’ve missed?
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The founder of Attwood Digital, Mark is a digital marketing veteran having been working online since before the dotcom boom. He created the world's first online skip hire service in 2003, has created multiple online courses, lectured on digital marketing and even written a book on the subject. He is also an ICO advisor and crypto-enthusiast.
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