Hey there, if you're looking for unrefined, achromatic pencil sketches done by an artist with no professional training and dubious skill levels, you've come to the right place! Please fasten your seatbelt. Rude heckles not pictured above: "Encouraging. You're doing great - any better and it might start resembling actual art!" "Scholarly. It took you all that time to write one one whole word? Keep it up and you might have a full sentence written by the end of the month." "Imaginative. Ooh, ooh! I know this one - that one looks like a bird, and that looks like a chicken, and that one looks like your hand slipped..." "Optimistic. Don't think of it as a bad painting - think of it as beautiful toilet paper." "Speculative. Maybe you'll get lucky and do this for a living someday." "Impatient. So when you do finish the warm-ups and get to the actual painting?" "Deductive. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder - so I guess you've been painting this blindfolded." "Sentimental. This reminds me of something an infant would've painted." "Groan-inducing. What's the matter? No need to get salty." "Critical. Maybe you should frame the definition of 'hubris' inste---" A comic image-assisted narrative in which a Glitch Curator and a Floran Brave discuss the importance of natural history, and the nature of self-awareness. “Boastful. What do you think of this display, my coniferous friend?” “Trophy from big prey. Floran ssad to misss hunt.” “Pedantic. I see why you might think that, but this is not a trophy – this is a fossil.” “Fosssil?” “Elucidating. This creature has been dead for at least a dozen centuries or more – certainly long before you or I travelled the stars. Through natural processes, its remains were preserved as an impression inside the sedimentary layers of this planet.” “If Glitchy not sstab meat, why keep thing?” “Rehearsed. As historians, we are asked this question daily: Why invest so much labour into displaying a dead, inanimate creature? Why toil through the arduous process of documenting actions and events which have already happened, and thus could be considered irrelevant in the present? By re-assembling and displaying the remains of this long-dead creature, we hope to stimulate the imagination and curiosity of the casual observer: What would this creature have looked like while it was alive? What would it have been like to live at a time when creatures like these roamed the planet’s surface? Intellectual. Indeed, we believe that to stimulate such imaginative curiosity is to cultivate the intellectual foundation on which the structure of self-awareness is built. We discard the notion that sentience is simply a criteria of cognitive ability or mental capacity in a life form. Rather, we would propose that self-awareness is built on the contemplation of natural history itself, both ancient and present - the urge to better understand our own role in the grand scheme of the universe. History helps ask that question: In a timeline where complex organisms have lived and died for millions of years - and will continue to do so for many millions more after we ourselves are long gone, what is the importance of our own existence, in the here and now? Decisive. Rather than attempt to describe what relevance ancient history has to us in the present, I would restructure your question to a more pertinent one: how is our existence as sentient beings relevant to the ongoing discourse of natural history?" “Sso… iss fosssil a hunting trophy?” "Resigned. I suppose it might as well be."