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Confuciusornis dui by bensen-daniel Confuciusornis dui by bensen-daniel
The last of a series of paintings I did of Mesozoic birds displayed as if they were dead and stuffed (19th century naturalist style). I had fun with the series---maybe I'll try it again when I get my canvas and paints and scanner and whatnot to my new home. Anyway, this one is my favorite of the series, as well as the last. Confuciusornis dui, with a cute little upturned beak tip that makes this species so much more attractive than boring old Confuciusornis sanctus. I've been out of touch for a while, though, have all the C. species been merged or what?

Daniel Bensen
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:iconbabbletrish:
babbletrish Featured By Owner May 5, 2012  Professional Traditional Artist
Beautiful! Yes, I'd love to see you continue this series.
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:iconbensen-daniel:
bensen-daniel Featured By Owner May 6, 2012
Thank you. Actually, that might be a good way to approach the next picture I'm planning. Thanks for the idea!
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:iconewilloughby:
EWilloughby Featured By Owner Mar 22, 2012  Professional General Artist
Really nice work, love the white spots on the primaries.
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:iconbensen-daniel:
bensen-daniel Featured By Owner Mar 22, 2012
Thanks. I don't think those come from any real model bird. But I may be wrong.
And has anyone discovered any fossilized pigment for Confuciusornis? Or is this picture still accurate :)
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:iconewilloughby:
EWilloughby Featured By Owner Mar 23, 2012  Professional General Artist
There actually has been a color study done for Confuciousornis which seemed to recover large numbers of eumelanosomes and pheomelanosomes, which would have given the critter hues of grey, white and brown in life. [link] These color studies that have been popping up are both the most awesome and most frustrating things - I've had to redo several of my illustrations prior to publication because of them.
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:iconbensen-daniel:
bensen-daniel Featured By Owner Mar 23, 2012
Ug. I know what you mean. I like this picture, but maybe it's time to do another one.
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:iconmassyr:
Massyr Featured By Owner Apr 22, 2008
C. dui's an old favorite of mine, I like the colors you used, and the whole style is great. like a still-life of a real display.
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:iconbensen-daniel:
bensen-daniel Featured By Owner Dec 21, 2008
Yes. Those were fun paintings to do.
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:iconshingworks:
shingworks Featured By Owner Jul 12, 2007  Professional Digital Artist
Great work! Love how you have the laid out all Audubon-style :D I used to work in a vertebrate museum collection, looks a lot like the plates they have hung on the walls.
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:iconbensen-daniel:
bensen-daniel Featured By Owner Jul 12, 2007
Cool-sounding job you had there. Yes, I was going for a sort of naturalist-finds-dinosaurs-and-draws-them feel. But the particular inspiration was C.F. Tunnicliffe, who was 19th century, and who has a great book floating around written about him.

Anyway, thanks for the comment :)
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:iconkinslow:
kinslow Featured By Owner Jan 25, 2007  Professional Digital Artist
really nice I love the strong silhouttes and then the detail on the hard bits like the the claws
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:iconbensen-daniel:
bensen-daniel Featured By Owner Jan 25, 2007
thanks---I've always been a little timid about silhouettes and and sharp color gradients, so this painting was a stretch in some ways.
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:iconjadewolf926:
jadewolf926 Featured By Owner Jan 24, 2007
This is gorgeous. Whe nI saw the thumbnail I was going to tell you how impressed I was that you made it look like a study skin. Then I read the description, so I'm goingto say, I think you pulled it off quite well!
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:iconbensen-daniel:
bensen-daniel Featured By Owner Jan 24, 2007
thanks. that was the intention, anyway
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:iconrubendevela:
rubendevela Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2006
Poor little stuffed extinct bird... :)
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:iconbensen-daniel:
bensen-daniel Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2006
They died for science!
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:icongreatringmaster:
GreatRingmaster Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2006
I can only really comment on this artistically, not being much for biology or its ilk myself, but the colour, texture, and attention to detail in this picture are spectacular. I'm especially drawn to the careful work on the feet and wing-claws. A beautiful piece of work!
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:iconbensen-daniel:
bensen-daniel Featured By Owner Sep 11, 2006
Thanks a lot. Wow, all this praise for the dead birds makes me want to do more of them. I don't have any paints at the moment, but maybe I'll play around with my tablet and see if I can't put something presentable together.
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:icongreatringmaster:
GreatRingmaster Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2006
You totally should!

Well, really you should just draw more, period. I think it's the colour and the detail that people are responding to more than the dead birds themselves. ;)
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:iconbensen-daniel:
bensen-daniel Featured By Owner Sep 12, 2006
:) Thanks. I've been working on something, and it should be done in the next couple of days. I've just started my new job and I'm still working out how to manage my time most efficiently, but I am trying to be more productive than I was in college. :)
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:iconrsnascimento:
RSNascimento Featured By Owner Sep 7, 2006
Hmm...very good! I really like it! I like to see old stuffed specimens from museums, it make me back in time, when most of the birds had not scientific names and need to be found.
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:iconbensen-daniel:
bensen-daniel Featured By Owner Sep 9, 2006
That's what I'm aiming for. I've always found natural history more fun than biology. :)
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:iconpiatnitskysaurus:
Piatnitskysaurus Featured By Owner Aug 31, 2006
I always enjoyed your "museum-style" paleo-bird pics, your Confuciusornis were the most striking, but I have fond memories of your Yanornis also. :)

Tim
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:iconbensen-daniel:
bensen-daniel Featured By Owner Sep 4, 2006
Thanks. I like this style too and I think I might get back into it. And maybe I'll upload Yanorinis next.
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:iconnemo-ramjet:
nemo-ramjet Featured By Owner Aug 31, 2006
there was also a pterosaur or two, as I remember?
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:iconbensen-daniel:
bensen-daniel Featured By Owner Aug 31, 2006
That's right. There was a fairly cute Rhamphorhynchus. Maybe I'll put him up here. Pterosaurs I actually prefer to draw alive, since I have a pretty good mental image of what they look like walking on four legs (thanks mostly to John Conway). Birds are tougher, though, because (a) I know what birds ought to look like in real life and (b) they have all those fluffy feathers obscuring the outlines of their bones and muscles. My "dead bird" drawings, actually started out as a way for me to figure out the birds' outlines before I did larger-scale life paintings of them, then I decided that the dead birds were more fun to paint by themselves :)
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