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LEXLOTHOR's avatar

AE Savage Encounter

More of my paleontology illustration appears in this gallery:


I was in graduate school in 1980 when I attended a guest lecture given by Walter Alvarez on the subject of the Iridium anomaly at the K-T boundary. When he put forth his asteroid extinction hypothesis, the light went on in my head. He was only addressing the Cretaceous mass extinction, but the obvious (to me) implication was that ALL of the disjunctions between epochal and period boundaries might ultimately be attributed to asteroid or comet impacts.

I was ON the PERMIAN mass extinction right away in the form of this illustration.

Now a quarter of a century later I am being vindicated by the evidence that the Siberian flood basalts of the end Permian represent the antipod of an asteroid crater of the right age that has been recently found in Antarctica.

This picture depicts a world in which the Permian mass extinction event never occured. As a result the dinosaurs never evolved and the mammal-like reptiles ruled throughout the Mesozoic! These are intelligent cynodonts having it out with derived synapsids. Note the weird juxtaposition of mammaries and egg-laying. These creatures have LESS in common with us than does the platypus.

To date I am not aware of another artist who has speculated on this particular juncture in evolutionary history.

The composition of this picture was insprired by a Jay Matternes painting that appeared in the Time-Life book "Fossil Man". That one showed a confrontation between Homo habilis and Australopithecus boisei at Oldavai Gorge.

art (c) John P. Alexander
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© 2008 - 2021 LEXLOTHOR
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MrAntlear's avatar

Amazing Concept! How smart are these cynodonts? They wield spears and torches. Are they sapient?

LEXLOTHOR's avatar

Yes, They are at the same mental level as the genus Homo as they can control fire.

AJTalon's avatar
Great concept!
eJcalado's avatar
This is a rather crazy idea, and I like it! If the premian-triassic extinction event never happened, thigns would be so weird by now that it's even weird to imagine. Great work!
grisador's avatar
Really like your Speculative evolution\life works !
LEXLOTHOR's avatar
THANX. I apply my technical knowledge of paleontology to such works as these.
grisador's avatar
Very Welcome ! :D

They're Both Accurate & Amazingly well thrilling at the Same time; Quite awesome works !  Nod 
AntFingers's avatar
Really cool concept!
Beware the purple panthers
DawnEmperor's avatar
Hmm, why am I reminded of the demons from fantasia...
LEXLOTHOR's avatar
You are the only person in the 30 years since I drew this picture who has made an allusion to Chernobog from "Fantasia". Now that you mention it, I do see a similarity although it is unintentional.
Aloodonguy67's avatar
What year is it?
LEXLOTHOR's avatar
This depicts an alternate past. This is a Triassic scene in which the Permian extinction never occurred.
Aloodonguy67's avatar
LEXLOTHOR's avatar
These are actual derived Cynodonts that have paralleled mammalian evolution. They would still retain post dentary bones in the jaws and lack the incus and malleus in the middle ear.
Aloodonguy67's avatar
ForestoFairies's avatar
Evocative picture ... I wonder why three fingers in cynodonts feet though.

I would like to see more about a "different evolution" theme.
LEXLOTHOR's avatar
For more Alternate Earth art visit my DA "Paleo" gallery:

ForestoFairies's avatar
I've already visited your gallery...and this still is my favourite.
LEXLOTHOR's avatar

I will be posting some xenobiological art soon.
ForestoFairies's avatar
I wait with impatience for your new works...

If a can suggest (maybe for some picture far in the future)...
a modern Australia still isolated where the Megafauna didn't disappear but instead evolved.
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