I’m liking the work of Steve Thomas at the moment, an American (I think) illustrator and graphic designer…
Like most things that appeal to me, it’s a very simple idea that’s been executed very well.. Steve takes imaginary or unreachable destinations and then creates a travel poster advertising it as a holiday destination..
In each case there is an instantly recognisable feature/ landmark, a cheeky written reference to the source of the idea, and always a very good reason to go there…
Drawn in a soft 1930′s Halcyon style, I like the inherent contradiction within the images, wherein something you know to be made up or totally inaccessible, becomes an almost achievable destination, thanks to the familiarity of the presentational format.
The Star Wars ones I think are especially good (but then anyone whose read more than a couple of posts on this blog, would probably know that already…)
One of the very first posts I wrote on this blog, back in June 2010, was in celebration of his birthday, so it is very sad to learn that less than 2 years later he has passed away.
McQuarrie was an amazingly gifted and visionary artist, famous for his work with both Steven Spielberg and George Lucas for whom he illustrated a bewildering number and variety of ideas for such classics as the first three Star Wars films, Close Encounters and ET. His role was to bring the ideas of the directors and writers to life, which he did in such a convincing way, that much of what people remember of these films, came directly from his head..
I was lucky enough at the end of last year to find an original hard back copy of his 1980′s book “The Illustrated Star Wars Universe” in a local charity shop. Without doubt the best £1.50 I’ve spent in a long time. The link takes you to Parka Blogs’s review of the book, which includes a video of him flicking through the pages… As an aside, I’ve come across this book review site a number of times before. It’s definitely worth a visit, Parka Blogs writes well and spends a huge amount of time and money on books.; The word obsessive doesn’t do him (and it almost certainly is a him) justice..)
All in all then, a sad day for Star Wars fans.. but a pretty good excuse to put even more of his wonderful work up on my site.
Bit slow off the mark with this one, but I’ve recently come across this guy.. and boy is he a talented individual..
Olly Moss is a young British Graphic Designer who, from his subject choice obviously has a tendency towards geekdom (no bad thing in my book) but who is obviously destined for huge things…
There’s a link to his web site here and his Flickr pages are here and they are both full of witty, clever and beautifully produced work that is simple and phenomenally effective. Makes you want to give up really, it’s so bloody good…
These reimagined Star Wars film posters are my current favourite..
But then there are all these Films in Black & Red…
And some Shoot the Baddies Targets…
And some classic video games as penguin book covers
As today is his birthday, its’ a good time to talk about the unbelievably gifted Ralph McQuarrie, the man who imagined some of the greatest films of all time.
McQuarrie initially worked as a technical illustrator for Boeing Aircraft during the 1960′s whilst in his spare time designing film posters. After setting up his own company he produced animated sequences of the Apollo space program for the CBS News network. Several forays into film illustration later, and his work was finally noticed in the mid 1970′s by a young George Lucas who was working up ideas for what was to become Star Wars.
The effortless sweep and timeless grandeur of his paintings was instrumental not only in defining the films style, but also in convincing 20th Century Fox to fund the film.
McQuarrie went on to work on all three of the original Star Wars Films as well as providing concept illustrations for Close Encounters, ET, Raiders of the Lost Ark, the first Star Trek film and the original Battlestar Galactica.
So Happy Birthday and a huge thanks to the man who brought my childhood dreams to life.