2021 AMI Online Salon

Evolution of the Shoulder Girdle

Project Details

  • Entrant Name:  Amanda Frataccia
  • Client: Dr Kristian J. Carlson, Keck School of Medicine of USC
  • Copyright: Keck School of Medicine of USC, 2021
  • Medium/software used: Photoshop, C4D, ZBrush
  • Final presentation format: digital
  • Primary Audience: lay audience

Project Description

This illustration was created as part of a university press release package to celebrate the publication of groundbreaking research. This illustration highlights the anatomical and functional differences between the upper and lower limbs of humans, apes, and that of the famous “Little Foot” fossil. The published research suggests that the structure of the fossil’s shoulder girdle allowed this early human ancestor the ability to conduct arboreal movements much easier than previously thought. This discovery means that “the structural similarities in the shoulder between humans and African apes are much more recent, and persisted much longer, than has been proposed.” The structure of the fossil’s shoulder girdle has helped us in our never-ending quest to discover exactly when modern human ancestors lost the ability for arboreal movements.