observer should associate distinctive and memorable characteristics with each fossil. Actual specimens are preferable because the observer can see the color and feel the texture and density of the fossil, or otherwise manipulate the fossils in three dimensions; some computer-generated illustrations or animations of digital photographs can also imitate the latter action.

An observer can also draw a specimen, which is strongly recommended for learning more about a fossil. Drawing encourages careful consideration and deliberation on the defining features of a fossil. Whether the artist is a beginner or an expert, pencils are the best tools for drawing fossils. In the process of erasing and redrawing, the observer can gain new insights on the subject and correct parts of the previous sketch in the light of newly-discovered features. Adding a scale to the sketch, such as showing the length of 1.0 cm in comparison to your fossil, is very important for communicating its size to other people. The observer can also read a description of the fossil either before or after sketching it. Descriptions are important because their vocabulary will be learned in conjunction with a specific fossil's image. This visual and verbal record, which involves evidence gathering and testing of the evidence, can prepare an observer before going into a field situation. Some people, however, are entirely trained in these methods in the field.

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Freehand Sketching An Introduction

Freehand Sketching An Introduction

Learn to sketch by working through these quick, simple lessons. This Learn to Sketch course will help you learn to draw what you see and develop your skills.

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