The Coming of Cthulhu


Two hundred thousand years ago, when the Great Old Ones came down to Earth and tried to subjugate the ascending species of Homo sapiens, they may not have necessarily been greeted with open arms. At least not once early humanity realized what the Old Ones were really up to.

This was a scene that came to mind after I recently reread The Call of Cthulhu. The Great Old Ones are supposed to have come down to earth sometime long before recorded history, so I wondered how prehistoric humans would react to these cosmic monstrosities trying to enslave them.

Bathing in the Stone Age


200,000 years before the invention of modern bathtubs, this female Homo sapiens idaltu is making do with a savanna waterhole for her hygiene needs. Thankfully for us, this one is a young and healthy specimen.😉

Drawing early Homo sapiens females sure is fun. I wish I could share reconstructions like this with the larger paleo-anthropology community just to see their reaction.

Veiled Roman Lady


In ancient Rome, it was customary for married women to wear a veil as a symbol of their husband’s patriarchal authority over them. In appearance these veils would have resembled the modern hijab, and it’s tempting to speculate that they might be related (since the Greek and Roman cultures would have been influenced by the Middle Eastern civilizations while they were developing and then expanded their empires into that region).

Kushite Debutante

kushite-debutanteA debutante from ancient Kush emerges into aristocratic womanhood with her bouquet of lotus flowers.

A debutante, for those of you who don’t know, is a young woman of upper-class background who is undergoing a “debut” into polite society after reaching the age of maturity. It seems to be sort of a rite of passage for rich chicks.

Science reporting fails on roaring dinosaurs

If you follow the news on things paleontological, you may have seen reports like this coming out in the press within the past few days:

Dinosaurs Probably Didn’t Roar, But Some Definitely Quacked

And I’m going to tell you why this is most probably bullshit.

The finding they reference (paper here) is a fossilized syrinx (avian vocal organ) found in a late Cretaceous bird. Since this structure apparently can fossilize yet hasn’t been found in non-avian dinosaurs yet, the researchers conclude that non-avian dinosaurs didn’t have a syrinx like modern birds do. Fair enough, it might go to show that dinosaurs couldn’t make sounds exactly like those of birds.

However, what the reporters concluding from this that “dinosaurs couldn’t roar” don’t know enough to tell you is that syrinxes aren’t the only way animals make noise. In fact, most other tetrapods vocalize through a different organ called a larynx. That’s what we use, and that’s what crocodilians (the dinosaurs’ second-closest living relatives) use too. And presumably it’s also what every animal that can actually roar uses too. So as long as dinosaurs vocalized using a larynx rather than the avian syrinx, then yes, roaring would well remain within possibility for them. We may not know whether they did, since I don’t think a larynx is tissue that would fossilize easily, but since the larynx is found in all other reptiles excluding birds, it doesn’t seem unreasonable to suppose dinosaurs had that feature too.

So don’t worry, the new finding doesn’t say non-avian dinosaurs couldn’t roar. It only means they couldn’t tweet like birds.

Queen Malakaye of Kush

queen-malakaye-of-kushThis portrait is based off a silver mask belonging to “Queen” Malakaye of Kush, which dates to the reign of King Tantamani (or Tanwetamani as the Egyptians called him). I don’t know if she was actually a Queen in the sense of being Tantamani’s Great Royal Wife, but I believe his main consort was actually another woman named Piankharty (kings in ancient Kush, like their Egyptian and other African counterparts, were typically polygamous). I chose Malakaye as my subject simply because I found an image of her mask and wanted to “bring it to life”, so to speak.

I admit the likeness between my portrait and the source image isn’t exact, but Egyptian and Kushite masks tend to have quite stylized facial portraits.

Source for reference image to the left here.

Rapper Chick


I dunno about you, but somehow there’s something about the concept of a female rapper that is especially sexy to me. Especially if she looked anything like this chick. Maybe it’s because they can rhyme and shake it at the same time. Whichever it is, the very thought of it is, say I shall, thirst-inducing.😉



Velociraptor mongoliensis surveys its desert habitat from atop some rocky outcroppings under a blazing sun.

I’ve always loved how Velociraptor’s name rolls off the tongue so beautifully, but honestly it’s disappointing as far as dinosaurs go. Feathered or not, it never did resemble the pack-hunting man-sized monsters my generation knew from movies and other media during our childhoods. On the other hand, we have caught it in the middle of a fossilized fight with a Protoceratops, so it might have still been quite fierce for its dog-like size.