Wednesday, July 27, 2005

Various Drawings Out Now

All art (c) Mark Schultz.

The new book, "Mark Schultz: Various Drawings", is out now from It's also available through comic shops, Bud Plant Comic Art, and Amazon Books.

If you want to order through your local bookshop the ISBNs are:

Softbound Edition ISBN: 0-9723758-6-4
Limited Signed and Numbered Edition ISBN: 0-9723758-7-2

I’d recommend ordering or picking up a copy ASAP as word from Mark is that Flesk underestimated the demand for the book, and preorder sales of the book have been heavy.

Monday, July 18, 2005

Creatceous Theropod Probably Breathed Like Modern Birds

From - graphic showing comparative skeletal analysis of dinosaur and duckIn an article published in the July 13 edition of Nature, Patrick O'Connor, of Ohio University in Athens, and Leon Claessens, of Harvard University, compared the air sacs of a Madagascar theropod to over 200 species of extant birds. The results show that the dinosaur - the late Cretaceous Majungatholus atopus - had the similar hollow-boned structure with air sacs that modern birds exhibit today.

The study focused on features found in the post-cranial skeleton around the neck, chest and hips; these regions generally contain air sacs that surround the lungs. Their comparative analysis showed that the vertebral column was similar to modern birds, and that "
neotheropods possessed the anatomical potential for flow-through ventilation of the pulmonary system."

Read the abstract of the Nature Letter.

Read the summary of the letter in Nature News

Read the popular article at

Mastodon & Mammoth Fossils in California

In the past two weeks, there have been two fossil finds in California.

The first discovery was in San Jose. A local resident was walking along a canal along the Guadalupe River, and discovered several large bones that he thought were "too large to be a cow." He called local museums and the water authority (who maintains the canal) about his discovery, which apparently also called the local media.

When the story hit the news wires, several local residents showed up with shovels and pails in hand to "help" uncover more of the animal. Local volunteers stayed with the fossil to protect it from such enterprising individuals, until David Goodwin of the UC Berkeley Museum of Paleontology came to examine the bones and confirm that they did, in fact, belong to a Mastodon.

The Museum will be excavating the bones and removing them to the museum for further study.

Read the full news article.

The second find was in Tulare County (south central section of California, east of Monterey County); a single Mammoth tusk was found by a dairyman on his farm in Pixley.

The farmer was urged by neighbors to keep his find to himself; however his college-aged daughter brought a piece of the fossil in to her anthropology professor, who immediately recognized it as fossil material.

Read the AP newswire article.

Friday, July 15, 2005

Dinosaur Dig Daily Broadcast

The Independent Record / website has posted an article about Discovery Channel creating a new documentary with updates from a Montana dinosaur dig for two weeks this summer.

"What they're trying to do is bring paleontology discoveries to their viewers as they happen," said Jamie Cornish, marketing director of the Museum of the Rockies in Bozeman. "For two weeks solid they'll bring that day's updates to their viewers."

Cornish said the updates will be posted on the channel's Website. The segments will also be aired on the Discovery Channel weekdays at 6 p.m. between July 25 and Aug. 7.

Excavation teams from the Museum of the Rockies will dig at several locations throughout Montana this summer. Crews will continue working the Hell Creek site near Fort Peck as well as the Egg Mountain site near Choteau, which was recently christened the Beatrice Taylor Paleontology Research Site.

The Discovery Channel, however, will focus on a new dig in north-central Montana, where a team of paleontologists will excavate three duck-billed dinosaurs.

"They're approximately 75 million years old," Cornish said. "What's important about that is that it's a period in which we have found very few dinosaurs. It will be interesting to see what those dinosaurs tell us."

More information can be found at the article link above.

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

Turok: Dinosaur Hunter Coming Back

Since Acclaim Studios, the developers of the previous Turok games, has ceased operations, it was only a matter of time before another video game developer picked up the torch to guide the Native American hero Turok back from extinction. Buena Vista's Propaganda Games development arm, based in Vancouver, B.C., has been announced as the studio responsible for new Turok: Dinosaur Hunter adventures.

The website features an interview conducted in Los Angeles at the recent E3 Entertainment Expo with Josh Holmes, Studio General Manager, Jorge Freitas, Director of Technology, and Howard Donaldson, Vice-President of Studio Operations.

Q: Turok was with Acclaim for the longest time, and Acclaim is no longer with us. It's been a rough ride for Turok fans, and they're probably a little worried. What would you like to say to the fans to reassure them?

Josh Holmes: "I think if you look at the history of the Turok franchise, when it first came out on the N64 it was an amazing game. It was the first game to really get it right as a console first-person shooter, which is something a lot of people forgot with the advent of GoldenEye. Turok was there first and really nailed it."

"From there, the franchise kind of lost its way and I think we all know where it's been. We're looking at it from a fresh new perspective. We want to totally reinvent, reinvigorate the franchise. We're wiping the slate clean and starting again anew. We think there's a lot of opportunity to incorporate some of the signature elements of the Turok games, but presented in a way we think is going to surprise a lot of people."

Jorge Freitas: "I think [gamers] should be excited about a new developer having it. We've been all been working in the industry for a really long time, we are fans of the series, so we're going to be sensitive to what other fans are going to be expecting. So don't worry. Be excited."

Sounds like Turok is aligned with some great creative talent. Read the article for more insight on the direction of the franchise. Also stay tuned for a special edition of the Paleo-Path articles where I'll discuss the history of dinosaurs in video games!

Turok is © its current copyright holder. Turok: Dinosaur Hunter image courtesy of The Grand Comics Database Project.

Sunday, July 10, 2005

Gorgosaurus Ate Squid?

Well, it did if you're "Gorgo" and are drawn by the legendary Steve Ditko!

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

Dinosaur Footprint Found in Alaska

A 70 million year old track from a three-toed carnivorous dinosaur has been found under a ledge in Denali National Park by a University of Alaska Fairbanks student.

Anthony Fiorillo, curator of earth sciences at the Dallas Museum of Natural History said the find was important because of its location in Interior Alaska, far from any coastlines.

"An Interior dinosaur at a higher elevation likely would experience more seasonal climate variation than creatures to the north or south closer to coasts, Fiorillo said."

"Fiorillo and others have for years explored evidence of polar dinosaurs near the Colville River on Alaska's North Slope about 25 miles from the Arctic Ocean. Evidence of duckbilled, plant-eating dinosaurs and theropods also has been found on the Alaska Peninsula."

See a photo and read more at The Washington Post and Reuters AlertNet.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Lake Powell Monster

From KSL TV5 comes THIS STORY:

Scientists near Lake Powell discovered the fossilized remains of a creature so terrifying that if they'd found it 93 million years ago, it probably would have had them for lunch. And, they're excited because it's a brand new species. Scientists have been exploring the desert near Lake Powell for the last six years. Now they have a fearsome creature to show for it, buried in a bed of shale. They've excavated bones, that when fitted together in a museum will be a nearly complete skeleton of a plesiosaur.

It was a sea-going distant cousin of a dinosaur sporting 100 very nasty teeth. In its day, 93 million years ago, it might have been the toughest thing in the ocean.

David Gillette, Northern Arizona University: "A nasty bugger, yeah. It was an ambush predator. Probably loafed in the water just under the surface or even at depth, waiting for its prey to come by, and then would make a burst as an ambush and take it's prey without their even knowing it was there."

Read the full story HERE.

NB: North Dakota has been a literal washout due to rain. The Palaeoblogger has been holed up for the last few days looking over the fossil collection of ND Geological Survey, hence these occassional posts. I'm off to Alberta in a few hours.

The Paleo-Path (Part 11): Pete Von Sholly

Pete Von Sholly has been a movie storyboard artist for over twenty years and worked on well over one hundred feature films, notably THE SHAWSHANK REDEMPTION, MARS ATTACKS, JAMES AND THE GIANT PEACH, THE MASK, DARKMAN and THE GREEN MILE. He has storyboarded Freddy, Jason, Chucky, Pinhead and Pumpkinhead... but the most fun he ever had working on a movie was on his own PREHYSTERIA series and DISNEY'S DINOSAUR because he actually got paid to draw dinosaurs all day... something he'd been doing for free most of his life ever since early exposure to KING KONG, FANTASIA, the legendary WORLD WE LIVE IN books, TUROK SON OF STONE and dinosaurs wherever else he could find them. He has co-created three albums of dinosaur music with fellow musician and paleographer supreme, Don Glut, (DINOSAURS THE ENCYCLOPEDIA and its many invaluable supplements) self published a children's book called DINOSAUR CIRCUS (above & below) and pretty much gets dinosaurs into whatever he works on wherever he can.

His graphic novels of "live action comics" (below) called PETE VON SHOLLY'S MORBID (from Dark Horse -- Vol. 2 is HERE) often feature dinosaurs and prehistoric themes and he even crammed them into his CRAZY HIP GROOVY GO GO WAY OUT MONSTERS mags from TwoMorrows at every turn (a parody of the ancient Monster Mags he grew up on).

His work recently adorned the cover of FOSSIL LEGENDS OF THE FIRST AMERICANS, Adrienne Mayor's fascinating new book and is often seen in the pages and on the covers of PREHISTORIC TIMES magazine. Pete has some new self-published works (a superhero satire with a naughty title; HERE DOESN'T COME THE FLYING F---! and a tongue way in cheek monster war comic called SERGEANSTEIN AND HIS MARUADIN' MONSTERS) and guess what? He managed to get dinosaurs into BOTH of them.

Buy the books from his website and see how! Limited copies of Dinosaur Circus are also available thru his site. He co-created a prehistoric superhero called TYRANOSTAR KING OF THE DINOSAURS with frequent collaborator Mike Van Cleave which was published as a 3-D comic by Ray Zone (shades of TOR- well two shades anyway- red and blue!)

What else? There will be a 50 card set of his faux TUROK SON OF STONE covers (above) from Dark Horse later this year and many other goodies as well.

Read a short interview with Pete HERE.
Visit the great B-Monster Site and scroll through the July ’04 column for a nice review of some of Pete’s work -- click HERE.

All art and Dinosaur Circus © Pete Von Sholly. Turok is © its current copyright holder.