Did you ever have a best friend?
Someone you couldn’t get anything done without?
I was thinking alot about “friends” this week at work, and what that means. When I was a kid I used to measure friendship by people that made me feel good. Now I’d rather have friends be honest with me so I can improve at the things I do.
Like Mr. Birdy here. He’s an awesome pet/friend/zord-like thing.
To see the image in higher resolution click here.
To see more work click here.
Here’s the new version.
I made some changes to the staff of the female warrior to echo the stern of a norse ship, as well as adding some scrollwork into her armor. I changed the male warrior’s helmet to harmonize better in shape with the other’s head symbols, as well as making minor changes to his armor. The bird dog now has a crest of power made from feathers growing in its pineal gland.
That’s about it.
To see the image in higher resolution click here.
To see more illustration work click here.
One of the T-shaped monoliths in Gobelki Tepe, this one bearing a relief of a fox.
It’s more than twice as old as the Pyramids, or even the written word. When it was built, saber-toothed tigers and woolly mammoths still roamed, and the Ice Age had just ended.
The elaborate temple at Gobelki Tepe in southeastern Turkey, near the Syrian border, is staggeringly ancient: 11,500 years old, from a time just before humans learned to farm grains and domesticate animals.
According to the German archaeologist in charge of excavations at the site, it might be the birthplace of agriculture, of organized religion — of civilization itself.
I was rummaging through old work in storage and found some entertaining drawings from 4th grade: warriors with mechanical birds perched on their shoulders to aid in battle. I wasn’t sure where the idea came from then, but now know that its origins started in Falconry. There are even places allow you to witness the artform in real life if you want.
You can view some falconry in action in the video clip below.
(The first 8 seconds are missing audio. The sound works after that.)
Traditional view of falconry state that the art started in Mesopotamia. The earliest evidence comes from around the reign of Sargon II (722-705 BC). Falconry was probably introduced to Europe around AD 400, when the Huns and Alans invaded from the East. Frederick II of Hohenstaufen has been noted as one of the early European noblemen to take an interest in falconry. He is believed to have obtained firsthand knowledge of Arabic falconry during wars in the region (between June 1228–June 1229). He obtained a copy of Moamyn’s manual on falconry and had it translated into Latin by Theodore of Antioch. Frederick II himself made corrections to the translation in 1241 resulting in De Scientia Venandi per Aves.
Tyrannosaurus rex just got a firm grip on the animal kingdom’s family tree, right next to chickens and ostriches. New analyses of soft tissue from a T.rex leg bone re-confirm that birds are dinosaurs’ closest living relatives.
“We determined that T. rex, in fact, grouped with birds – ostrich and chicken – better than any other organism that we studied,” said researcher John Asara of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center and Harvard Medical School. “We also show that it groups better with birds than [with] modern reptiles, such as alligators and green anole lizards.”
Scientists long suspected non-avian dinosaurs were most closely related to modern-day birds. This idea initially rested largely on similarities between the outward appearances of bird and dinosaur skeletons. Later, further evidence on the close evolutionary relationships among birds and non-avian dinosaurs accumulated.
A leg bone full of key gunk
The latest evidence comes from an ancient femur bone unearthed in 2003 by Jack Horner of the Museum of the Rockies in the Hell Creek Formation, a fossil-packed area that spans Montana, Wyoming and North and South Dakota.
It seems some 68 million years ago, a teenage T. rex died and left behind a drumstick-shaped femur bone that today still contains intact soft tissue and the oldest preserved proteins discovered to date.
Though no genetic material was preserved, researchers were able to extract the proteins from the collagen tissues.
I like how they describe the proboscis of the moth as being a “fearsome harpoon”. Heh. Makes me wish I had a proboscis if I was in trouble.
A species of moth drinks tears from the eyes of sleeping birds using a fearsome proboscis shaped like a harpoon, scientists have revealed. The new discovery – spied in Madagascar – is the first time moths have been seen feeding on the tears of birds.
Tear-feeding moths and butterflies are known to exist elsewhere in Africa, Asia and South America, but they mainly feed on large, placid animals, such as deer, antelope or crocodiles, which cannot readily brush them away. But there are no such large animals on Madagascar. The main mammals – lemurs and mongoose – have paws capable of shooing the moths. Birds can fly away.
But not when they are sleeping. The Madagascan moths were observed on the necks of sleeping magpie robins and Newtonia birds, with the tip of their proboscises inserted under the bird’s eyelid, drinking avidly . This was during the wet season, so the scientists think the insects wanted salt, as the local soils are low in sodium.