Dressing Draks
A Simple Guide To Adding Plumage To Maniraptorans

All skin and bones
Well, muscles and tendons, too, of course, but without a plumage this maniraptoran looks pretty skinny. I've left the contours of the thigh clearly visible, although there may have been skin covering the almost nonexistant gap between ribcage and thigh at least part of the way (the bare skin would probably be wrinkled in this position anyhow). Note how the arm folds neatly together. This animal also has the weight-bearing second toe.

(Some details like the teeth which should be clearly visible have been omitted to show the lower jaw more clearly. This animal also lacks lacrimal horns.)

Feathered up
Adding just a modest amount of hair-like feathers suddenly changes the look of the animal completely. Contours of the thigh disappear almost completely under the plumage (maniraptoran thighs are very flat, so they don't stand out much anyway) same as some other features apparent in the unplumaged version. The manus disappears almost completely from sight even with short arm feathers (just imagine if this was a female with brooding feathers!) I've used quite clear strokes to show of what direction they originate from and give an idea of the different feather masses growing from different parts of the body (back, hips, thigh, calf, humerus, radius etc.)

This is supposed to be a temperate zone animal, so I left the legs unplumaged and added scales. The tail also has rather thin covering of feathers except for the base. I didn't add a fan of feathers to the tip, as even in species with this feature it would likely be folded most of the time anyhow. Note that the animal has feathers/down/dinofuzz down to the tip of its snout, leaving only the area of the nostrils and edges of the mouth bare.

All material on this page is copyright © M. Aumala 2004