About the SA Blog Network



The art of science and the science of art.
Symbiartic HomeAboutContact

PhyloPic: 500 Million Years, 44 Silhouettes

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.

Email   PrintPrint

The design for the tee: "500 million years. 44 silhouettes. 10 artists. 1 shirt." Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License


Sometimes you just have to love the internet.

Specifically, I love when collaboration results in something wonderful and educational. PhyloPic is a site where you can find free Public Domain/Creative Commons silhouettes of organisms. They’re submitted by artists volunteering their time and talent for educators and well, anybody to use. And now there’s a t-shirt you can buy to help support PhyloPic.

From Mike Keesey, creator of PhyloPic:

I am offering a T-shirt showing the evolution of humans from the earliest bilaterian animals (“worms”). This design, using silhouettes from PhyloPic, depicts the origins of vertebrates, tetrapods, mammals, primates, and finally us: Homo sapiens sapiens.

If just 100 of you buy a T-shirt, you will collectively fund PhyloPic’s web hosting costs for two years. You will be supporting students, teachers, and researchers — that’s something to be proud of. (Or, just do it because it’s a pretty cool T-shirt.)

This image features artwork from the following illustrators:

Free to use silhouettes of organisms, over 1,700 so far. Amazing.


Find out more about PhyloPic:

Edit: corrected the title and added the link correct Creative Commons Licence.

Glendon Mellow About the Author: Glendon Mellow is a fine artist, illustrator and tattoo designer working in oil and digital media based in Toronto, Canada. He tweets @FlyingTrilobite and is on Instagram. You can see Glendon's work-in-progress at The Flying Trilobite blog and portfolio at Follow on Twitter @symbiartic.

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.

Rights & Permissions

Add Comment

Add a Comment
You must sign in or register as a member to submit a comment.

More from Scientific American

Email this Article