antediluvianechoes: Illustration from Alte und…


Illustration from Alte und neue Welt, 1873

Look at this parade under your feet, my son! Forms lovely and lurid, monstrous and sublime! Complexities unfolding, revealing, recombining, blossoming in the dawn gardens of this old world. Here are swimmers, flyers, creepers, and hulks, frolicking and fighting, breeding and feeding, roles accorded for each anatomy. Iguanodon and Deinotherium patrol their terrestrial kingdoms, Pterodactylus and Meganeura own skies with outstretched wings, and ostracoderms and trilobites plow sea-mud fields for detritus and other lowly delicacies. As every age has elapsed, a new one has arrived, burying the old, celebrating the new, until it, too, has become outmoded and passes into that splendid eternity. So, too, dear son, shall you and I.

antediluvianechoes: The Late Heavy Bombardment…


The Late Heavy Bombardment, Don Dixon

In those circular seas—craters, now cradles—lives are lived. Microbes teem in slimes and biofilms, clogging big hot baths with their tiny bodies, chemosynthesizing and reproducing because this is what they do. It’s all there is to do. The unrelenting violent rain of comets and asteroids might remelt the surface of the Earth, and, if future generations are to survive the onslaught, to pass on genetic material so that someday an artist might paint this moment and a poet might pen some corresponding words, these thermophiles must do what they do best—survive.

antediluvianechoes: Ordovician seabed, Zdeněk …


Ordovician seabed, Zdeněk Burian

You weirdos, you miscreations, you cystoids—named so-unfortunately-yet-so-appropriately—anchored in sand and detritus, mouth on the top and anus on the side, waving too few arms over bodies of deformed geometries—bodies like globs of wax spilled down a candleside, like the embryos of forgotten Platonic solids, like half-planted Lovecraftian rhizomes and bulbs, like toddler doodles looped and scribbled and abandoned on the playroom floor—how is it your breed lasted 100 million years?

antediluvianechoes: Mammoths, Ely Kish Autumn …


Mammoths, Ely Kish

Autumn has come to Michigan. The birch leaves look like little flames wagging on the ends of branches. It’s sunny, but cool, with strong winds pushing heavy clouds across the sky. They won’t drop any rain here; the air currents won’t let them linger. Two mammoths have wandered through the trees, a long way from their grasslands south of the glacier. They’re thirsty and the lake is sweet. A breeze brushes their short summer coat drawing ripples in the fur. Soon the mammoths will turn shaggy, woolly. This is the end of their summer cut. A large moose gives the giants quiet distance, lets them suck up water while it crops water grasses and the succulent parts of lilies. The beaver, for its part, doesn’t even notice the mammoths. They repay its attention in kind. The wind shifts a little, pushes the water grasses against each other, sways the tops of pines, and pulls a few ochre leaves from the birches. They look like flakes of amber when they land on the surface of the water. As the air stills, a chickadee sings, its dee-dee-dee filling the space between breezes. The mammoths’ bellies feel bloated and cold now, so full are they of the lake. With a rumbling sigh, they turn back to the grasslands to wander, feed, and let the autumn sun warm their backs before the coming chill.

Metaplacenticeras. Upper Cretaceous. Hokkaido….

Metaplacenticeras. Upper Cretaceous. Hokkaido. Japan

antediluvianechoes: Anomalocaris and Opabinia …


Anomalocaris and Opabinia by Armel

To suggest Opabina felt terror would overestimate the creature’s abilities. It felt not so much fear as it did urgent self-preservation. So when the thorny appendages of the predator curled around Opabina’s soft, little body, it squirmed and wormed to be free, but did not feel scared. And when the circular jaws of the Anomalocaris puckered against Opabina’s back and bit, Opabina continued its vain struggle all the more violently, but never felt frightened. And in the seconds before all life leaked from the little body, as its insides were stuffed into the ring-like maw of its killer, and its vision blurred, and muscles relaxed, proboscis drooped, and searing pain was replaced with a cool, dark numbness, it still felt no fear. Opabinia simply did not know what death was; it only knew that life should be.

(for @asderat)

mortalityplays: We are delighted to formally …


We are delighted to formally launch Pencils in the Margin!

Pencils in the Margin is connecting artists, writers and other creators with the aid organisations working on the ground on behalf of detainees – from humanitarian shelters to pro-bono migrant law services, human rights initiatives, and people working tirelessly to reunite families separated at the border.

You donate your money, we donate our time. Simply follow direct links from our curated list of charities and send your donation receipts to the artists who have ‘adopted’ those organisations for rewards in your inbox. 

The more you give, the more you get!

To sign up to offer incentives as part of the project, leave your details here.

Share, share, share, give money, get art, and don’t hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions, suggestions, or want to be involved!

Thank you tumblr!

antediluvianechoes: Smilodon, Roy G. KrenkelI…


Smilodon, Roy G. Krenkel

It had been a turbulent summer. The sky was always moving, always changing, islands of clouds skimming below the blue, ushering seas of grey and waves of rain every day. Smilodon spent more time than usual on the lee sides of outcroppings, huddled against stone to keep out of chilling showers. Lighting cracked at nearby trees, drew searing lines between earth and sky. The ground was soggy and uncomfortable underfoot after these storms. The cat was miserable.

And it was happening again. The sky heaved layers of white and slate, piled into thunderheads pushing gusts of cold air over the valley. The proboscideans didn’t seem to mind. Maybe they were too massive to care about wind and clouds. Maybe the sky wasn’t dark enough to warrant attention.

There were a few calves in the group. They squeaked between the adults’ trumpets, gamboled under their mothers’ swaying tree-trunk legs, and pulled dead branches from undeserving bushes.

Smilodon watched the mammoths, drooled when it saw the babies. The breeze swept up from the valley and filled its nose with the smell of the things. But it would be stupid to go after a mammoth calf alone. The wind moved again, brought the smell of oncoming rain, and the cat sulked back to the rocks to wait out the next storm.

Roy G. Krenkel was born on this day in 1918.

Hesperornithoides!So a while back I did an ill…


So a while back I did an illustration of an unnamed small theropod dinosaur (nicknamed “Lori”) to help raise funds and awareness for research. She got a name yesterday! Check out Hartman et al’s paper describing the new dinosaur:

NOM NOM NOM!!! “Rare fossil in a fossil …

NOM NOM NOM!!! “Rare fossil in a fossil reveals a dinosaur’s surprising last meal”