Sunday, 17 March 2013

Inspirational Star Wars Illustrations

Its one of those things that has stuck with me since I was as young as I can remember; My earliest memory of watching Star Wars for the first time was sat in front of my TV screen, gazing in wonder at these amazing adventures by these awesome characters as I feverishly tried to replicate an AT AT Walker out of my Lego bricks I had scattered in front of me (this was quite some time before official Star Wars Lego sets were out mind you)... Star Wars has always been one of those franchises that has fuelled my imagination.

Regardless of how this makes me sound like a massive fan-boy (I wear that title proudly when it comes to such things), I think its important to acknowledge those things that have provided influences in your life.
I recently received as a Christmas present an art-book that collects a huge assortment of illustrations from over the many years from the beginning of the Star Wars saga to now, covering all aspects of the franchise: work done for the movies, games, novels, trading cards, toys, it covers everything that falls under the category of 'illustration' from the archives of one of the worlds largest licensing vaults. This book was a revelation; It not only displayed the vast range of varying artwork created, but also brought to my attention various artists and illustrators who I had not known about before... It is these artists I thought id shine the spotlight on in this post. 

Ralph McQuarrie
For those that don't know, Ralph McQuarrie is the legendary concept artist behind not only the concepts for the original trilogy of Star Wars movies but others including, E.T. , Battlestar Galactica and Cocoon amongst many others. It was through his artwork that George Lucas was able to visualise his galaxy, and the characters that dwelled within it. The original Star Wars artist has gone on to be the inspiration for many, if not all of the artists featured on this page. 

 Drew Struzan
Another iconic name in the film industry  Struzan's work is recognisable to nearly everyone even if you don't recognise the name, having produced movie posters for a massive portion of blockbuster's, including; Back to The Future, Star Wars, Indiana Jones, Blade Runner, E.T. The Extra Terrestrial, The Muppets, Harry potter, and Hellboy... and that's just scraping the surface. Like the majority of artists featured on this page, Struzan is a master of traditional media, making use of coloured pencils and acrylics in his many works. 

Hugh Fleming
An Australian artist who has worked on numerous Dark Horse comic book covers, recreating the epic feel of a movie poster by capturing the realistic likenesses of each character in every cover. His work has not only covered the star wars comics that follow the stories of the franchises expanded universe, but also many Indiana Jones covers, as well as numerous independent works. 

Terese Nielsen
An artists who's work has pretty much dominated the world of card games since the early '90's, doing work for Wizards of the coast, most notably contributing artwork for the Magic The Gathering card game series. She has also worked illustrating superheroes for Marvel, Dark Horse and Topps comics, which she fully painted. She has also contributed work to teh World of Warcraft series as well as Star Wars miniatures.... All of her work has an intrinsic focus on characters, of which there is always a strong and dynamic feel to each. 


Jason Palmer
Another artist who began looking up to the likes of Drew Struzan, only to end up in the same industry, working on various Movie posters, DVD covers, comic book covers and collectables for licenses such as Star Wars, Harry Potter and Game of Thrones. His pencil work is incredibly detailed and realistic, and his studies in various characters show his ability in capturing those seen on the big screen.

Jerry Vanderstelt
An illustrator who's focus on the world of Sci Fi and Fantasy has led him to recreate incredibly realistic interpretations of iconic characters from various licensed franchises, including Star Wars and Lord of The Rings. He works with Warner Bros. and New Line Cinema to create various movie artwork, though he has also worked for numerous other companies over the years. 

Randy Martinez
An artist that is incredibly versatile amongst many mediums, he has created cartoons, caricatures, illustrations, paintings and 3D art for Lucasfilm since 1999. His stylisation and sense of humour carries across into many examples of his work, even when utilising detailed paintings... as seen in his 'Sith Rocks' piece above. His ability to depict recognisable characters in his own stylised fashion is what sets his work apart. 

Matt Busch
Has worked in Hollywood since the early nineties, and his work not only covers franchises such as Lord of The Rings, Battlestar Galactica and Night of The Living Dead, but he has also created work for bands such as Foo Fighters, Beastie Boys and Poison. He has dedicated the last few years in reaching out to those who want to learn the trade, by creating various unique drawing tutorials as well as providing insight into the industry. 

Dave Dorman
A renowned artist in the Star Wars world, Dorman is an Eisner award winning illustrator, who's artwork has captured most iconic characters in popular culture over the past 25 years. He is well known for his epic cover art for the Star Wars and Indiana Jones comic book covers by Dark horse comics. 

Dave Seeley
An artist who grabbed my attention not just through the work itself but with how he creates it: Though commonly the combination of traditional media and digital is to start with traditional then polish it into a final piece on computer is how most artists do it, Seeley does it in reverse by creating his images digitally first, then working over them in oil paints after. his influences in sci fi movies, and background in architecture is prevalent in the detailed, and epic compositions he creates. 

Brian Rood
A professional illustrator who has worked across so many fields and for so many clients its difficult to know where to start. He is notable for creating a range of estate artwork based on iconic entertainment figures of the twentieth century, including Ray Charles, Muhammed Ali, Sammy Davis Jr, Frank Sinatra and Richard Pryor to name but a few. He has contributed well over a hundred illustrations to Hasbro's Star Wars toy packaging alone.

Tsuneo Sanda
A Japanese artist, with influences in various western traditional artists, Sanda has concentrated his career on depicting artwork themed around Sci Fi and Space, including work for Star Trek and Star Wars. His work has been featured in book covers, comic book art, prints and even company exclusive work. 

Tommy Lee Edwards
Having an incredibly impressive body of work to his name, Tommy Lee Edwards has created work for comics (X-Men, Daredevil, Batman), licensing style guides for movies (Harry Potter, Men in Black 2, Superman Returns, Batman Begins, and the Star Wars and Indiana Jones properties) as well as video games (Command and Conquer, James Bond and Prey). His work for conceptual and storyboard artists in movies has provided recent work in the Denzel Washington epic 'The Book of Eli', as well as other upcoming projects. 

No comments:

Post a Comment