Link: The Bad Hair, Incorrect Feathering, and Missing Skin Flaps of Dinosaur Art
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    BamaNation Hall of Fame AUDub's Avatar
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    The Bad Hair, Incorrect Feathering, and Missing Skin Flaps of Dinosaur Art

    This is an interesting article on the pitfalls of making assumptions when reconstructing prehistoric animals.

    Inside the pitfalls of illustrating prehistoric creatures.

    Illustrating long-extinct creatures is difficult, but important work. With no living specimens to observe, it’s up to “paleoartists” who draw, paint, or otherwise illustrate the creatures of prehistory as we think they might’ve been. Their work is the reason that when we talk about velociraptors, stegosaurs, or even wooly mammoths, we have some idea of what they looked like.


    But since all we have to go on are fossils, deciding how a dinosaur would have looked is as much art as it is science. And there’s at least one paleoartist who thinks we might be getting things wrong.

    ...



    How a baboon skeleton might be interpreted by future paleoartists.

    ...

    Short of a Jurassic Park-style clone scenario, we might never know exactly what dinosaurs looked like. But until that day, we have artists like Kozeman to continue dreaming up the endless variations of the prehistoric animal world, by taking a cue from the creatures in our own backyards. “Do not imitate them, but see what other shapes they could take.”

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    BamaNation Hall of Fame bamachile's Avatar
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    Re: The Bad Hair, Incorrect Feathering, and Missing Skin Flaps of Dinosaur Art

    Silly artists. Anyone could see that's a chupacabra.
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    Senior Administrator TIDE-HSV's Avatar
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    Re: The Bad Hair, Incorrect Feathering, and Missing Skin Flaps of Dinosaur Art

    interesting read. I remember reading several years ago that a team consisting of, I think, structural engineers and orthopedists suggested that the postures of some dinosaurs, specifically T. Rex and Brontosaurus were unlikely. They showed that, based on hip structure in the case of T. Rex and spinal articulation in both, that both carried themselves more or less parallel to the ground, that instead of upright like most representations of T. Rex and with the head and neck towering into the sky in the case of brontosaurus. Most museums declined to adjust, based on what people were accustomed to seeing. In the case of brontosaurus, modern day giraffes influenced presentation. However, giraffes possess a variety of adaptations, bony and otherwise, that dinosaurs don't seem to have possessed...
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    BamaNation Hall of Fame cbi1972's Avatar
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    Re: The Bad Hair, Incorrect Feathering, and Missing Skin Flaps of Dinosaur Art

    Quote Originally Posted by TIDE-HSV View Post
    interesting read. I remember reading several years ago that a team consisting of, I think, structural engineers and orthopedists suggested that the postures of some dinosaurs, specifically T. Rex and Brontosaurus were unlikely. They showed that, based on hip structure in the case of T. Rex and spinal articulation in both, that both carried themselves more or less parallel to the ground, that instead of upright like most representations of T. Rex and with the head and neck towering into the sky in the case of brontosaurus. Most museums declined to adjust, based on what people were accustomed to seeing. In the case of brontosaurus, modern day giraffes influenced presentation. However, giraffes possess a variety of adaptations, bony and otherwise, that dinosaurs don't seem to have possessed...
    The vascular system of giraffes is really amazing. Their heart beats twice as often (150bpm) and twice as hard (280/180 mmHg) as a human heart.

    Their recurrent laryngeal nerve also makes a bizarre 15 foot detour to accommodate their long necks. This is presented as evidence either for evolution or for divine ineffability, depending on who you ask.
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