There’s a trend in paleoart known as “shrink-wrapping”, where dinosaurs and other beasties are drawn as little more than the barest amount of flesh over a skeleton, as if the distant past was entirely populated by bizarrely anorexic wildlife. It was very prevalent in the 90s, although thankfully less so these days.

A recently-released book, All Yesterdays, features some wonderful speculative paleoart, showcasing a few more fanciful and fun depictions of prehistoric life as a reminder that we might still be just as wrong about some of these animals as were the lumbering swamp-monster dinosaurs of the 1950s. It also has a section based around “reconstructing” a few animals of today as they might be seen by a non-human paleontologist in the far future.

And I’ve done something similar here. This is a suitably shrink-wrapped and scalified version of a modern critter — our hypothetical future-scientist only had a skeleton to work from, and no soft-tissue evidence at all for this particular group of animals.

So, let’s have a little interactivity here: what is this thing?

Edit: The answer is here. Thanks for guessing! :D

There’s a trend in paleoart known as “shrink-wrapping”, where dinosaurs and other beasties are drawn as little more than the barest amount of flesh over a skeleton, as if the distant past was entirely populated by bizarrely anorexic wildlife. It was very prevalent in the 90s, although thankfully less so these days.

A recently-released book, All Yesterdays, features some wonderful speculative paleoart, showcasing a few more fanciful and fun depictions of prehistoric life as a reminder that we might still be just as wrong about some of these animals as were the lumbering swamp-monster dinosaurs of the 1950s. It also has a section based around “reconstructing” a few animals of today as they might be seen by a non-human paleontologist in the far future.

And I’ve done something similar here. This is a suitably shrink-wrapped and scalified version of a modern critter — our hypothetical future-scientist only had a skeleton to work from, and no soft-tissue evidence at all for this particular group of animals.

So, let’s have a little interactivity here: what is this thing?

Edit: The answer is here. Thanks for guessing! :D

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  10. paintedlandscape reblogged this from scientificillustration and added:
    Intriguing!
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    Ah, gotcha.
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    My point wasn’t about making things “fat”. It was about putting a sensible amount of flesh onto a skeleton when...
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