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Monday, May 27, 2013

A Majestic Diplodocus Art Print

It's cool to check out a piece of art and gain an understanding of the kind of talent it takes to create a visual artwork. An art print is just as impressive, often produced in limited quantities to be hung in the home of someone who truly appreciates art. They draw the eyes of friends and visitors, becoming a conversation piece to be talked over dinner

A Diplodocus art print conveys images of a time, millions of years past, where large dinosaurs roamed the earth. It transports the observer back in time, bringing him face to face with this gigantic sauropod. Take a closer look and it's possible to follow the curving back, long neck and tiny head of this magnificent creature. The Diplodocus was one of the largest land animals ever to stomp across the landscape in our distant past. It would have been an amazing sight to see, as its long neck carried its small head up into the heights of the rain forest canopy to snack on huge green leafs, for this large creature was a herbivore.

Owning and framing a Diplodocus art print leads to unavoidable images of the time they lived. The art print brings to life the dangerous landscape of prehistoric predators stalking the forests and plains. The Diplodocus was a central part of that landscape, always on the move for new trees to strip and munch on. They most likely traveled in herds, wary of the many predators looking for weakness in their group. However, their life was mostly sedentary, moving on four huge legs, a bit like a herd of elephants, from forest to forest.

The enduring wonder of a high quality art print, and the subject image of the fascinating diplodocus, is a perfect combination for stirring the imagination. One of the coolest things about an art print is how desirable it is as an art medium. A poster of art may look good from a distance, but it's simply not to the same standard as a print, with its high-quality inks.

A poster of art has a respectable place in the home, displaying fine artworks, but art prints hold a place of pride in a home. They're put on display, and the diplodocus art print will hold such a place in the heart of the owner. It's bound to occupy a prime piece of wall space in a room where people can appreciate the work and its subject matter.

The artist who created the original oil painting from which this print was made is Josef Moravec, a renowned paleo-artist, whose works have been displayed in Natural History Museums throughout North America and Europe.  His love for and knowledge of the subject of prehistoric life is evident in his work.

The Diplodocus has been extinct for many millions of years, but come see him captured frozen in a moment of his life in an art print. Get up close and imagine the rising steam from long dead forests. There really was a time when this huge dinosaur trod on the ancient plains of our world.

Friday, May 24, 2013

Stegosaurus & Ceratosaurus art print

This Stegosaurus & Ceratosaurus print of an original oil painting by paleo-artist Josef Moravec shows a Ceratosaurus nasicornis in the background, and a Stegosaurus armatus in the foreground. The two dinosaurs are shown on a fern savannah, with small palms and other trees scattered about the mid-ground and distant background. Both of these dinosaurs lived during the Jurassic Period, ranging from 156 to 145
million years ago.

Within the print, the features of the stegosaurus are prominently displayed, from the sizable plates upon its back, to the prominent spikes on the end of its tail.  It is speculated by archaeologists that that these plates were used to help control body temperature, though they could have been involved in defense or mating display.  The Stegosaurus was a plant eating dinosaur, and a large one; they were about 30 ft long and up to 9 feet long, weighing in at approximately 4,000 pounds. It has long been thought, due to the very small head of this animal that it was not exceptionally intelligent.

The Ceratosaurus was a theropod, belonging to the same group as the later Tyrannosaurus Rex and its contemporary, the Allosaurus, another meat-eating theropod dinosaur. They probably hunted in groups, and likely were scavengers as well.  Imagine the terror of being surrounded by a group of these predacious creatures! They are estimated to have measured 20 feet from its head to the tip of its tail and weighed up to 2,000 pounds, with the males thought to be larger than the females. It is noted for having a pair of bony ridges above its eyes and a horn on its nose.  They had massive heads with large sharp teeth and likely very good eyesight like most predators, and considerable intelligence. Its legs and tail were massive and muscular. Easily seen in the print are the small arms, ending in the very well defined claws that its species is known for.

Overall, this quality art print is a magnificent piece of art displaying two of the most impressive dinosaur species to have existed during the Jurassic Period. The stunning detail of the dinosaurs and the simple, yet beautiful, display of their surrounding environment gives a great view of these beasts who ruled the earth in its antiquity. This work is sure to please anyone who appreciates dinosaurs, and anything prehistoric, and would make a wonderful addition to any collection of art relating to that period of time. Josef Moravec, is a renowned paleo-artist, whose works have been featured in Natural History Museums throughout North America and Europe.  His works are known for their accuracy and attention to detail.  What child or adult dinosaur enthusiast wouldn’t love to have this print displayed in their room or study?

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Brachiosaurus – A Jurassic Period Giant

Children have held a steady interest in the Jurassic period's animal kingdom throughout the years and for good reason. Many fossils have been discovered of these fascinating creatures who once ruled our planet. Living around 156-145 million years ago, there are various renditions and interpretations of what the Brachiosaurus and the world that they lived in looked like. Other dinosaurs that lived in the Jurassic Period along with Brachiosaurus would be Archaeopteryx, Stegosaurus, Diplodocus and Allosaurus.

Artist Josef Moravec captures the strength and grace, while at the same time keeping true to the scientific findings about this animal by paleontologists. His interpretations emanate a sense of realism and imagination simultaneously. In great detail, his oil renditions have become one of the most sought-after finds of that ancient world from the artistic community. This beautifully rendered Brachiosaurus art print brings the dinosaur back to life in scientifically accurate surroundings.

The most striking feature of Brachiosaurus is the long neck that stands 13 meters above the ground at the highest point. Known for its ability to see over the Jurassic kingdom with a view that could only be shared by those at much higher elevation, or with some form of wings, the Brachiosaurus pops out in the memories of young children and adults alike. Its reputation as one of the highest grazing animals in all living and prehistoric existence secures its place in history with a very distinct imagery in mind. In fact, the largest fully intact skeletal fossil that has ever been discovered belongs to this species of dinosaur.

For those that share a love for the Jurassic period's animal life as an adult, or are just finding out about them as a child or student, Josef Moravec's work spans the spectrum between a scientific study and artistic interpretation in a way that appeals to everyone. Given the size of the renditions, it is sometimes easily forgotten that these animals actually grew to be about 85 feet in length from head to the end of the tail. If one shares a fond love for this particular dinosaur, there is no better way to bring it to life than to commemorate its existence with one of Moravec's art prints.

Featured in many professional educational texts, the artist's work has become renowned for its ability to bring these animals to life in a way that only a true visionary artist can produce. This Brachiosaurus art print is part of a collection that will become a favorite for any dinosaur lover. Not only are they made available in quality production standards, but they also hold a bit of history that cannot be shared by any other class of animal in the world today. Bring this extinct animal back to life by allowing the work of this artist into your home or that of someone you know who shares the same admiration for these interpretations of ancient life. There probably isn't a boy alive who wouldn't love to have this work of dino art on their bedroom wall.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

A Plesiosaurus Art Print, Beautifully Rendered

Plesiosaurus brachypterygius, a prehistoric Loch Ness Monster, roamed the seas 135 million years ago. All members of this species are now extinct with the rest of the reptilian behemoths from the Jurassic Period. They live on through an impressive Plesiosaurus Art Print created by Josef Moravec, a world-renowned paleo-artist, whose works are displayed in Museums of Natural History throughout Europe and North America. It depicts the fearsome primeval predators resting on some rocks while watching over their young.

The Plesiosaur, which name means "near lizard", is a predatory marine reptile with a long neck, four flippers and a tail. It grew up to 16.5 feet long from head to tail. It propelled itself lithely through the water to prey on fish with its long neck, wide set of jaws, and interlocking razor sharp teeth. It is believed to have fed by trapping its prey in its mouth then swallowing it whole. Though it had advantages of camouflage, maneuverability, and flexible sight, it was most likely preyed upon by some of the larger marine predators of the Jurassic, such as the Liopleurodon and Kronosaurus.

The Plesiosaurus became perhaps the first fossil reptile ever seen by British scientists in 1821, making them aware of the enormous reptiles that inhabited our world millions of years before the first human. Josef Moravec's fascination with the beauty of the prehistoric world motivated him to create such works as the Plesiosaurus Art Print. He strives to recreate the prehistoric world, as it truly existed, based on his education in paleontology; for example, the way the Plesiosaur young are shown in a nest in the sand like sea turtles, who come onto land to lay their eggs today. This is the most current theory on the method of reproduction of Plesiosaurs by paleontologists. The flippers of the predator are portrayed realistically as powerful. Paleontologists believe the Plesiosaurs flapped their paddles up and down to propel it, giving them the appearance of flying through the water.

The Jurassic Period, ranging from 200 to 145 million years ago, was a time very different from that of our own. The warm humid climate allowed dense jungles to cover much of the landscape. The world was dominated by large sauropods such as Diplodocus and Brachiosaurus, which were in turn preyed upon by theropods such as the Allosaurus and Megalosaurus. Hulking reptilian leviathans like Plesiosaurs and Ichthyosaurus wandered the seas. Plesiosaur fossils have been found mainly near England, Germany, and East Africa, though some American species are know as well. Through the remaining fossilized skeletons of these archaic hunters, paleo-artists like Josef Moravec are able to recreate the ancient lost world of the Jurassic Period.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Dilophosaurus Art Print

The Dilophosaurus was a rather large dinosaur that existed during the early Jurassic period. It was one of the biggest dinosaurs to exist during the early Jurassic period. Its name stands for 'double crested lizard'. The Dilophosaurus does have two thin bones that form a crest on the top of its head. It is speculated that these crests played a role mating displays.

Dilophosaurus has been portrayed as appearing rather nonthreatening, but because of its size and the fact that it was a meat eater, this is a bit hard to fathom. Finding quality Dilophosaurus art prints can be a bit difficult because of the “cartoony” feel to many available pieces. The key is looking for the artwork that is produced by a talented paleo-artist. One such artist is Josef Moravec, whose desire to present dinosaurs as accurately as possible in his well-researched paintings has resulted in his works being prominently displayed in Natural History Museums throughout North America and Europe. 

The Dilophosaurus has been a very popular dinosaur in movies and documentaries. It was one of the features of popular movies in the last decade, although its depiction of size and weight were drastically reduced. The actual Dilophosaurus was almost half a ton in weight and was approximately 20 feet long. Reconstructions of this dinosaur also show it as a  beautiful, athletic animal as well. There is also 
no reason to believe that it could spit poisonous venom, or that it had a decorative ruffle of flesh around its neck as depicted in “Jurassic Park”.

Other meat eaters that existed in the same time period and region as the Dilophosaurus included the Syntarsus and the Segisaurus. The more prevalent plant eaters of the time period included the Scutellosaurus, Anchisaurus, Massospondylus and the Ammosaurus, though it is speculated that some were omnivorous.

The Dilophosaurus had socket set teeth, which was ideal for hunting prey. It also walked on two legs making it a bipedal in nature. Dilophosaurus art prints that depict the dinosaur as small and even timid are based more off of movie producers' ideology rather than the actual truth about the size and girth of the animal.

The Dilophosaurus was a rather intimidating dinosaur. It had long, slender teeth that overhung part of its jaw. These teeth were razor sharp and were used to slash and tear at the flesh of other dinosaurs. It also had sharp claws on both of its hands that were also used to ravage and kill in order for it to feed. This was a fast dinosaur that could outrun many of its contemporaries and it had a muscular tail that not only helped it to balance its weight, but also aided it when fighting for food or territory.

In terms of the dinosaur realm of the early Jurassic period, the Dilophosaurus was one that would garner much attention. Having a Dilophosaurus art print for home or even the office will definitely engage the interest of all who see it.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Archaeopteryx lithographica – Linking Birds and Dinosaurs

When one thinks of the Jurassic Period, the first things that come to mind are the dinosaurs; Tyrannosaurus Rex, Velociraptor, Brachiosaurus and Triceratops. Those enormous and unforgettable images of Earth’s past masters have been made so real to us today by Steven Spielberg’s “Jurassic Park” and many other movies, television shows and works of art.  But even as the dinosaurs ruled the land, another branch of their family was evolving to rule the skies – a small raven-sized, feathered animal that we have named Archaeopteryx.  There may have been other proto-birds before Archaeopteryx and there are questions as to whether it was capable of true flight, which would require the ability to raise its wings above its body in order to achieve the lift necessary for taking off from the ground.  Physiological studies of the fossils found differ in respect to this ability, but it was certainly capable of gliding for long distances, and more than likely lived in trees and shrubs. 
The name Archaeopteryx comes from the Greek words for “ancient,” and “wing or feather”. The bird existed 150 million years ago, during a time that scholars have placed in the late Jurassic Period. In that period, Europe was part of an archipelago of islands, in a relatively warm and shallow sea, located much closer to the equator than it is today.

The first Archaeopteryx fossil was just a feather, found in 1860 or 61 in the limestone deposits near Solnhofen, Germany by the German paleontologist, Hermann von Meyer, who named and described its classification just two years after Charles Darwin published “On the Origin of Species”. The first skeletal fossil, missing most of its head and neck and unearthed in 1861, is known as the London Specimen. It belonged to a German physician, Karl Haberlain, who probably received it in exchange for medical services. He sold it to the British Museum, where it resides today, for 700 pounds. Perhaps what is most impressive about this specimen is the feathers and relative bird-like quality. Some experts argue that it was more dinosaur than bird, due to its dinosaur characteristics, namely the bony tail, razor sharp teeth and claws placed high upon the wings. Anti-evolutionists, however, claim that it is in fact a bird, but a very odd bird.  

These features suggest that Archaeopteryx is a perfect choice as a transitional animal existing between birds and dinosaurs and for studying avian origins. An exceptional portrayal of this find can be found in Josef Moravec’s painting of  Archaeopteryx lithographica, shown at the top of this article. Josef Moravec is a renowned paleo artist whose paintings reflect his quest to realistically portray eras of Earth’s past.  The obsession, for him, was attributed to a form of escapism into an alternate world, one replete with scientifically accurate ancient landscapes of natural beauty and the creatures who once inhabited our planet. By appreciating and studying the techniques of greats like Rembrandt and Leonardo da Vinci, Moravec formed a niche appropriate for his passion. Regarding paleontology, Moravec has borrowed the light from Czech paleoartist, Zdenek Burian, a proponent who showed the prehistoric world for all that it truly was. Moravec’s brilliant portrayal of the Archaeopteryx in a beautifully rendered painting would not have been so exceptional if not for his immense interest in and knowledge of the prehistoric world.

Monday, May 13, 2013

Triassic Period Art

The Triassic period is envisioned as having different areas of tropic temperatures, desert and arid areas, lush forests, high reaching mountains and massive river systems. The large, one land mass of the Pangaea continent was centered along the equator which extended from the north to south and experienced harsh storms. The study of the Triassic period, especially its dinosaur inhabitants, is an ongoing study, especially with the help of fossils being uncovered.

This period of time (220 million years ago) was a time of a different evolution, recovering from a near mass Permian extinction that eradicated almost all land and sea species at the end of this period. Surviving Triassic animals evolved like the first dinosaurs that dominated through the Mesozoic Era. Ancestors of  present day mammal species, and amphibians, such as frogs, turtles, and even crocodiles, were featured in the end of the Triassic period. 

Using our imagination in how the Triassic period and its inhabitants may have looked is provided by paleo-artists, such as Josef Moravec. Czech born illustrator Josef Moravec is a renowned paleo artist of prehistoric animals, including his intensive study and imaging of their ecologic and geologic environment. His paintings are displayed throughout the United States and Europe in top museums and are used in respected periodicals about prehistoric life. Moravec’s lifelong fascination with dinosaurs and other ancient forms of life has resulted in his stunningly realistic depictions of the Triassic Period.  He has studied paleontology and believes in capturing the exact anatomical details of the prehistoric land animals, huge sea creatures and the fauna and fossils of the Triassic period. 

Paleo artists use amazing color, even breathtaking black and white drawings that satisfy art lovers, illustrators and especially dinosaur scientists and hobbyists. Moravec's early inspirations came from the award winning work of his idol, Zdenek Burian, who was also a paleo artist in the Czech Republic. Burian's work has been used by professors, scientists and prehistoric researchers to display, not only the Triassic Period, but also the early earth and its inhabitants. 

Triassic Period Art is also conveyed through other paleo artists, such as Winnipeg Canada's, Julius T. Csotonyi. Born in Hungary, Csotonyi's artistic illustrations of the Triassic period have been used by popular science magazines, world museums and he has published many prehistoric books. Paleo art is a specialized art field, which is highly devoted to the reconstructing and life rendering illustrations of extinct animals and the biosocial culture that they needed to survive. 

When fossils are discovered in various parts of the world, these paleo artists are eager to study and help to reconstruct their forms, alongside paleontologists. Their skills and their work, range from an in-depth and articulate anatomical translation, to fully realistic, dynamic scenes, which are astoundingly realistic, drawing our imaginations back into ancient worlds.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

The Permian Period – A Time of Change

This vivid depiction of life in the late Permian Period that happened about 260-280 million years ago, by celebrated paleo-artist Josef Moravec, is a print from his original oil painting. The subject of this dinosaur painting is the Dimetrodon grandis, who surprisingly, was a member of the therapsids, or “mammal-like reptiles”, a branch of which spawned the very first mammals in the soon-to-come Triassic Period, which was the beginning of the Mesozoic Era. 

The Permian was the last period of the Paleozoic era, and was very much a time of change.  Arguably, the greatest period of extinction the earth has seen occurred at the end of this time, with over 90% of the existing marine species perishing, along with up to 70% of land creatures.  This event is known as the Permian-Triassic Extinction, and there are many theories in regards to its cause; scientists speculate it could have been caused by massive volcanic activity, the collision of a meteorite in what is now Antarctica or intense radiation from a nearby supernova, but no one knows for sure what caused this mass extinction.  It would take the earth over 30 million years to recover from this catastrophic event.

The star of this realistic painting, Dimetrodon, was an apex predator of his day, and grew to be almost 10 feet long.  A distinctive feature of Dimetrodon, which means “two measures of teeth” was the fact that these creatures had teeth of two different types, shearing and sharp canines, unlike reptiles. Another distinctive feature of Dimetrodon was the huge sail that towered over his back, supported by spines that connected to each vertebra. Whether the sail’s purpose was to help the animal regulate its temperature, or was part of its mating ritual is unknown.

At the same time, a group of small reptiles started to become more prolific.  They were called diapsids, and are the ancestors of most of the reptiles we see on Earth now, and also of the soon to be rulers of the planet, the dinosaurs, as well as pterosaurs, crocodiles and modern birds.  This time of great change would lead to “The Age of the Dinosaurs”.  With the drier climate, terrestrial plant life was evolving, too, away from ferns and mosses to the first conifers, called gymnosperms, which reproduced by enclosed seeds.

Josef Moravec, the artist of this realistic and accurate Permian Period painting, has been recognized for his excellence by Museums of Natural History throughout the United States and Europe.  His love for dinosaurs started at the age of three, when he began making his own dinosaur pictures, creating his first dinosaur oil painting at the age of nine.  Though trained as a graphic artist, his love of paleontology and his unique vision of this “lost world” led to his career as a world-renowned paleo-artist.