This is a rock my friend Nick Kiefer found in upstate New York, near the Adirondacks. Embedded on its surface are aquatic fossils from the Devonian period, and are approximately 350-380 million years old. At that time, most of what is now the US was under a shallow, tropical sea, and was located near the equator. East of the Appalachians, one would find swampy streams and coastal areas. Out continent was, at the time, linked to Africa and Europe, so one could find these same fossil types there.
Even though I didn't personally find these particular fossils, I have found plenty of my own (including one with an imprint of a devonian fish), and to hold and feel them, well, it makes me quiver. On some genetic level, these creatures and I are related. Every animal before it led to it and every animals since has evolved from it in some way.
Also, this happened to be my first real attempt at studio lighting. What a damn difference just one light makes!!