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RE: Best skulls for artistic reference

> From: Christopher Srnka [mailto:theclaw10@home.com]
> Recently I was comparing the various _T.rex_ mounts and skulls
> that I've been
> able to see and photograph in person, and of course there are some obvious
> distortions in some of them and variance in some aspects. From
> what I've read,
> "Stan" is probably the best skull from which to reference for
> drawing; would
> that be the consensus among the DML members?
> Also, what are some things that I might look for in skeletal
> mounts and skulls
> to determine and correct (in my drawings) distortion? Is it
> usually a matter of
> referencing as many samples as possible to find commonality?

One warning about the skull of "Stan", though: the teeth are almost always
mounted as if they are falling out of the jaws in the various casts I've
seen at different museums.  Adult _T. rex_ teeth are about 1/3 crown and 2/3
root.  On the good colored casts of the skull of Stan, the black area of the
tooth represents the crown, so if you could artistically shove the teeth
back into their sockets, it will look a lot better!

                Thomas R. Holtz, Jr.
                Vertebrate Paleontologist
Department of Geology           Director, Earth, Life & Time Program
University of Maryland          College Park Scholars
                College Park, MD  20742
Phone:  301-405-4084    Email:  tholtz@geol.umd.edu
Fax (Geol):  301-314-9661       Fax (CPS-ELT): 301-405-0796