Design Update—Deinonychus

Over the past two weeks we have been designing a scene that will give a little bit of an idea as to what the world would have been like before sin. What we came up with was a somewhat menacing-looking, meat-eating dinosaur (Deinonychus) pulling fruit from a tree limb. The original design was to have an elk kind standing right next to it, emphasizing the fact that animals were at peace with each other, especially carnivores and herbivores. They weren’t eating the other or fleeing from the other. But the scene was narrowed down to just the dinosaur eating fruit.

So the first thing was to make a model of the Deinonychus to scale. We used a one inch scale, which means that one inch on the model would equal one foot on the life-size display. It was based on the side view of a 2-D skeleton. A wire-and-foil armature was created to capture the proportions of the 2-D skeleton. From there, basic shapes without much of detail were added to create the 3-D model. From nose to tail, this guy would be 15 feet long.

To create the life-size form we used large blocks of polyurethane foam. Each body part was cut out individually and assembled with dowel rods and special foam glue. Then the whole thing was reinforced with fiberglass to give it strength. This process took about a week to do.

Now comes the fun-yet-tedious part of adding texture and details. We are even taking time to create our own eyes for it. The skin texture, like a lot of other things in the museum, is being created with a material called Epoxy Sculpt. It is an A/B putty-like mix that hardens in about two hours, so working fast is the key. That’s a good thing, though, because we have less than a year now to complete the museum.

Next time you see this thing he’ll be terrorizing a piece of fruit.

Thanks again for joining us. We appreciate all of your prayers and support for the museum.

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