Paleontological Illustration

Paleontological Illustration

This is a selection of paleontological illustration projects done over the years.

Steller’s Sea Cow

This reconstruction of a Steller’s Sea Cow in its natural environment used the 3D model created for the Skin & Bones mobile app project and imagined its marine habitat. Steller’s Sea Cows (Hydrodamalis gigas) disappeared from overhunting only 27 years after Europeans first encountered them in 1741. There are no visual records, only written descriptions, of what they looked like. This reconstruction was based on the descriptions, on the appearance of closely related living species (such as the manatees and dugongs) and by consulting an expert on the anatomy of this animal group.

The illustration was included on the exhibit Anatomy of an Illustration and on its print catalog, part of the Brazilian Science Illustration Meeting in Florianópolis (Brazil) in 2014. It was in another exhibit and catalog, called Beautiful Maryland, that took place at the Quiet Waters Park gallery.

Media: digital


Fossil Turtle

Fossil turtle reconstruction of the species Ummulisani rutgersensis and line diagram of all views of the skull of Dirqadim schaefferi. These illustrations were included in the publication: Gaffney, E., Tong, H. & Meylan, P., “Evolution of the side-necked turtles: the families Bothremydidae, Euraxemydidae and Araripemydidae”, Bulletin of the American Museum of Natural History, number 300, NY, 2006

Media: graphite on paper, digital
Client: American Museum of Natural History – Division of Paleontology