Wednesday, December 28, 2011

My first LITC year: a retrospective & look forward

Dear cherished readers,

The first year in which I've participated in the Love in the Time of Chasmosaurs jamboree is nearly at an end. As such, I've decided that a short, not-at-all-disgustingly-self-indulgent retrospective is in order.

(You might think it'd have made more sense to do it on the first anniversary of my joining the blog. And you'd probably be right, but now just feels like the right time, damnit.)

Writing for David's blog has been lots of fun, obviously, and I am very grateful for the opportunity. If nothing else, it's given me something to do now that I've left university and my social life has all but vapourised.

When I look back on 2011, it will be with fond memories of such world-shaping events as the Terrible '90s Dromaeosaur Face-Off, the ultimate example of abuse of hindsight. It's only a matter of time before the competition's winner, 'Zombienychus', becomes the star of his own TV documentary series, motion picture, and toy range (I plan on pitching the latter to Schleich). My graduation ceremony pales in comparison...

The chance to nitpick the fine efforts of CG artists, programme writers and John Hurt ("Des-platter-saurus!") for a wide(ish) audience of internet geeks was one that I truly relished - and I don't think I did too bad a job, with only a few cock-ups (including what was, in retrospect, a completely inexplicable disliking of the term 'oviraptorid'). One of the show's writers and directors even dropped in for the first review, which was a very humbling moment for me (people read my nonsense?!?). In the end I very much enjoyed Planet Dinosaur, and am hoping for a second series - its focus on the Actual Evidence was more refreshing than an ice-cold power shower to the face.

I'll also take credit, if you don't mind, for making Niroot Puttapipat such a blog staple that we should probably introduce a tag for posts that mention him. In case you missed it, his latest saurian work was a rather brilliant festive Parasaurolophus illustration. Also, I got a birthday present that was hand-painted by him and therefore better than yours. Neener-neener-ner-ner.

Most of all, thanks to all of you, the readers, for sticking by, even through posts about toys, crap robots, more toys, more crap robots, my undergraduate thesis, "perversely bizarre" books, and the Netherlands. Hopefully I've provided some decent between-meal blogging snacks to David's main courses.

Here's to 2012, then. What will the new year bring? Well, a few weeks back we received an e-mail from a chap by the name of Jay Epperhart. Quoth Jay:
"So occasionally you will make a quip along the line of 'can you believe they ['80s and '90s authors/artists] thought dromaeosaurid theropods had non-feathered pronated hands *snicker*" and I'm like 'wait, what?!' since that it what my 10-year-old self memorized."
Jay cordially suggested that one of us cough up an article all about how dinosaur reconstructions have changed since the '90s. David suggested that I should handle it. Which I will, as soon as I can think of something to pad out the article that isn't related to theropod feathers and forelimb posture.Your ideas are welcome for that one...

There will also be plenty more Vintage Dinosaur Art from me, of course. My scouring of eBay and charity shops for crummy old books is ongoing.

'Til then, thanks very much once again for all the support and comments since May, and I'll see you in 2012. Here's a photo of me looking confused on a Dutch woman's bicycle for your amusement.


  1. Happy Anniversary (of sorts)!

    One thing that I would love to see covered in the reconstruction article(s) is ceratopsian hands. I've seen a few references to inaccurate 90s reconstructions, but I still don't fully understand what's changed.

    Hands in general would be worth talking about, especially the fact that so many of the big herbivores seem to have been stuck with mittens.

  2. @Talcott Basically, three fingers contacted the ground, and two were reduced. All digits were distinct. This Favorite model does it well.

  3. @Marc Ah-ha. Thanks! The palms facing inward threw me as well.

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  5. Thank you for this wonderful post.

  6. From what I've been able to observe, it's clear that the readers of this blog value your contributions a great deal. As I'm certain David does (I courageously risk being confined within a tree or some other receptacle by the great Solomon for presuming to make the pronouncement...).

    That said, I'm glad you're taking the responsibility for my presence being littered about this fine blog, as it absolves me of any culpability whatever. *Nonchalance*

    Seriously though; thank you so much to both you and David for all your work (and tolerance). Bravo times a hundred. Your djinn remains your humble servant.

  7. Something you could do in the reconstruction article is the change in the image of Spinosaurus brought about after JP3.


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