My Dad's Dinosaur Drawings

20th July 2004

Like most dinosaur lovers, I first fell in love with them at an early age, with the help of timeless classics such as The How and Why Wonder Book of Dinosaurs and Dinosaurs and Other Prehistoric Reptiles. (I am definitely going to pick up copies of these old books when I have a moment.)

My Dad, Keith Taylor, had a nice eye for the line of these animals as they were presented in the books of the time. He drew a series of beautiful pictures of my favourites, of which four still survive. (I'm not absolutely sure whether there more, but I seem to remember a Tyrannosaurus which I would love to see again.) Inspired by his efforts, I also took a stab at drawing a dinosaur myself.

I think these were drawn when I was about seven or eight, which means they date from about 1975.

My Dad's Drawings

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Brontosaurus. I admit that by scientific standards nearly everything about this picture is wrong - the size and shape of the limbs, the swamp-wallowing lifestyle, the position of the nostrils, the shape of the head, the erect posture of the Allosaurus in the background, even the very name Brontosaurus. (This animal is properly called Apatosaurus.)

But. You have to admit that it captures something essentially sauropodous that many more accurate pictures completely lack. The very substance of brontosaurosity is captured on paper. I love this picture in a way I never could a modern restoration.


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Triceratops. The horns are too long and straight, and the back leg is absurdly stocky. But deep in my heart, this is still what I believe Triceratops looked like. Or at least, what it should have looked like.


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Styracosaurus. Check out all those spikes! I think it's cool that this picture and the Triceratops one so neatly capture the different characters of centrosaurine and chasmosaurine ceratopsids.


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Allosaurus. This may have rather more fingers and toes than are strictly called for, and metatarsals twice the length of the tibia, but I still wouldn't want to run into it in a dark alley.


My Attempt

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Stegosaurus. I believe that's a stray plate on its head rather than a horn.


Feedback to <> is welcome!