|By Dan Baker|
An Interview With Cypto-Artist Dan Baker
By Dorraine Fisher
We love all of our cryptid artists but out sculptors are unique and special as they create a multi-dimensional depictions of our hairy friends. And crypto-sculptor, Dan Baker is by far one of our favorites. And he has a very unique perspective based on his personal experiences and his many collected reports from others. And based on the latest information on Bigfoot, he may be closer than anyone to having some of the most honest depictions. Only time and research will tell. But in the meantime, Dan is creating sculptures that tell an interesting story about bigfoot.
Dorraine: When did you first become interested in pursuing art?
Dan: I became interested in art at a very young age. I remember as a very young boy, I would be eager for Sunday to come around so that I could get my hands on the cartoons in the funny pages. I would sit for hours and attempt to draw my favorite cartoon characters.
I have pretty much stayed with drawing cartoon characters most of my life but stopping about ten to twelve years ago.
Dorraine: Have you always lived in Ohio? And what influence has that had on your art, if any?
Dan: I haven't always lived in Ohio. I lived in both Michigan and Indiana for a while.
I've had two primary influences on my art. The first would be both the cartoons of Warner Bros. and Disney. The second would be my obsession with early hominids, great apes and bigfoot.
Dorraine: What made you pursue sasquatch art?
Dan: For a while, I was making Christmas figurines out of polymer clay. I made everything from elves to nutcrackers. Then one day as I was doing some online bigfoot research, I decided to try and sculpt a bigfoot bust. On thing led to another and I did one after another. Every individual hair was cut, rolled and put in place. One at a time. It was very time consuming!
Dorraine: Have you had a bigfoot encounter of your own?
Dan: Yes, I had a bigfoot sighting of my own on June of 2013. It was about 12:30am and I was at our basecamp with my wife and a property owners wife. We heard what sounded like bipedal footsteps just inside the tree line about 35 yds. From camp. I jumped up with my night vision and caught site of the Squatch when I canned left to about my ten o'clock position.
Four other people witnessed the Squatch after I did.
Dorraine: I know you didn’t get a good look at the creature’s face. So how do you attempt to depict the face of a creature considered by many to be mythical? Where does your prototype come from?
Dan: So many people have described the faces of the creatures they witnessed as being like that of a Neanderthal, or Native American, including my wife Sue. Then there are those who have described something more apelike. So, I have attempted to sculpt both types. I have however sculpted a kind of whimsical little baby Squatch named "Skookum". He is my wife's and won't part with him even though I’ve been offered quite a bit of money for him.
Dorraine: What keeps you inspired to do crypto-art?
Dan: I think that trying to create something that has the possibility of looking like any creature that someone has seen is somewhat of a driving force to keep sculpting even though I have taken a rather long hiatus from it at this point.
Dan: American Primate Exploration / A.P.E. is a group of like- minded people who are trying to make sense and provide absolute proof to mainstream science of a species of relic hominid through proper evidence collection and field research. We research early hominids and great apes in an effort to put pieces together of an enormously huge puzzle of possibilities. Many of our people in the field have many years of hunting and tracking experience under their belts and know all the sights and sounds of the indigenous wildlife as well as the vegetation in their areas which can be edible or poisonous. We make every effort to keep it real and not allow any of the "woo" inside our group.
Dorraine: Tell us about your new Educational Visual Aids Fund.
Dan: My Educational Visual Aids Fund on "Go Fund Me " is an effort to raise needed funds to obtain early hominid and great ape skulls and life casts to use as hands-on tools to show people when we do our public lectures. Our lectures are primarily broken into two parts. Part one is speaking about bigfoot, encounters, sightings, etc. Part two is showing and speaking about early hominids and great apes in an effort to show people the possibilities of a relic hominid, similarities and differences in many different species, their relative sizes, possible diets, musculature, skeletal features and how long ago they were here on earth.
Showing photos up on a screen simply does not in any way compare to being able to hold a 2.8 million year old skull up for everyone to be able to see and touch for themselves.
I have been able to obtain a museum quality replica mandible of Paranthropus Boisei and it is absolutely amazing ! It is also in the neighborhood of 2.8 million years old !
It will be used in future lectures as well. People will be able to see this specimen up very close with their own eyes !
Currently, Dr. Jeff Meldrum, Dr. Esteban Sarmiento, and Paleoanthropologist Ran Cartwright are on board with me and my fund.
Dorraine: Do you have any other favorite subjects for your artwork?
Dan: I really only specialize on bigfoot or hominid art at this point. Maybe a few little cartoon characters here and there from time to time just to change things up!
Dorraine: Over the years, have you developed any theories or philosophies about Sasquatches?
Dan: Up to about four years ago, I was in the Gigantopithecus camp when it came to my thoughts of what bigfoot was. I have to say that the late Grover Krantz had a lot to do with that.
But then I began really studying paleoanthropology and primatology and I began to look at sasquatch as more of a relic hominid. First of all, we have countless footcasts that show a bipedal creature albeit flat footed which points to mid-tarsal flexibility. (Many humans including the great primatologist Esteban Sarmiento have this condition) Next, many eyewitnesses have described a creature resembling a Neanderthal or Native American. These are hominid traits. The musculature appears to show some features of a great ape, however, many early hominids had the same features such as very powerful arms and the trapezoid muscles that are so prominent in the "Patty" film which would limit the ability of the creature to turn its head the same as we would. Very large, thick chests with powerful pectoral muscles have also been witnessed. The very robust mandible and sagittal crest are also traits shared by both great apes and early hominids such as Paranthropus Boisei or Paranthropus Robustus and gorillas.
Then we have to think of the intelligence of these creatures. We all know they are very smart and seem to have an awareness that we as humans have. The size of the brain would most likely dwarf ours. (Speculation)
I believe that sasquatch may be a relic hominid that has developed along its very own branch of the evolutionary tree, sharing traits of great apes but only to an extent both physically and in mannerisms. I believe that instead of dropping all of the great ape mannerisms and traits, they have maintained them to this day. (quite possibly an asset to their way of life)
I could go on and on, but I'll stop here.
Dan: I don't have a website or blog to show my art, but will gladly show some photos here.
Dorraine: What is your favorite medium for your art?
Dan: My favorite medium in art is polymer clay. You can let your imagination and creativity come to life in 3D.
Dorraine: What else do you like to do outside of art?
Dan: I have to say that I love to go camping and spend time in the outdoors doing field research and being with nature. I love all the fresh air and the creatures that we come across along with the beautiful scenery we come across.
Dorraine: What do you do for a living? And does that have any correlation with or influence on the way you pursue your art?
Dan: I no longer work everyday due to my M.S. And many other ailments. I guess my work now is my research although going into the field is becoming much more difficult, so, I study early hominids and great apes and look forward to future lectures where I can still make people happy and go "Wow" by showing and telling them things that perhaps they didn't know.
Dorraine: Is there anything else you'd like to tell us.
Dan: I would like to ask folks to please help out my Educational Visual Aids Fund on "Go Fund Me " so that I can continue to be active at least in teaching folks about both bigfoot and early hominids and great apes.
Special thanks to Dan Baker.
This Post By TCC Team Member Dorraine Fisher. Dorraine is a Professional Writer, photographer, a nature, wildlife and Bigfoot enthusiast who has written for many magazines. Dorraine conducts research, special interviews and more for The Crypto Crew. Get Dorraine's book The Book Of Blackthorne!
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