Oysters are first responders in cleaning up the environment, and they have some of the most intriguing forms in the natural world. This has made them irresistible to me as subjects for drawings. Each one of these drawings was made as I picked up one shell, drew it, and repeated that process again and again to build the image.
Along the way, my grandsons gave me a small box of petrified shells they'd collected from Shoal Creek in Austin, Texas. Imagine my surprise as I found that those tiny forms, Ilymatogyra arietina, are also oysters from the Lower Cretaceous period, 125 to 113 million years ago. They rather resemble Lincolnville Beach's periwinkles, another shell I've drawn extensively.