I know many of you will no doubt have already seen this via the facebook updates but for any who have managed to avoid becoming part of the mass that is Facebook....http://www.ralphmcquarrie.com/#
Ralph's art made such a huge impression on me that I am not sure I can convey it....I would not be who I am today without it. He was a stranger to me yet I feel his loss as keenly as if he were kin....perhaps it's because he was a great artist, a legend in his own time...or perhaps it's the personal realization that I can never meet the man who inspired me to draw every day for most of my childhood.
35 years later, McQuarrie's Star Wars concept art is still fresh and original.
Something I've mentioned before on this forum is my belief that the reason the classic designs from the likes of McQuarrie, Syd Mead, Ron Cobb and Matt Jeffries have lasted without really dating is that all those guys came from real-world engineering or industrial draughtsmanship, so they thought from the inside out, in a practical, form-follows-function way.
A lot of concept-style art I see these days leaves me cold, and appears to be more about following the "cool" trends (current trend - illuminated seams and/or tattoos) rather than creating something individual or believable. Maybe it's because a lot of these young artists have no practical experience to draw on, and so they just recycle other people's ideas without any understanding?
Oh! I hadn't heard about it, Pen, so thanks for sharing.
McQuarrie was amazing. I was about 8 years old when Star Wars came out. Soon after its release, a friend of mine gave me a set of McQuarrie's concept illustrations for Star Wars, and I had them hung up in my room for years. They never grew stale.
It'd need to be different from the previous design a Star Wars craft challenge, though. That was based around a ship that was docked on a planet, so maybe the homage thread could be to design a one-man starfighter of some sort? Between Star Wars and Battlestar Galactica, McQuarrie designed a few of those kind of things.
I like the idea of the M-Wing as homage, but while there hasn't been an M-Wing per se in the expanded universe, there has been (in comics) an M-Class Starfighter which, to all intents and purposes is an M-Wing:
According to Wookiepedia, the letters that don't have a fighter are: F, G, H, I, J, L, N, O, P, Q, R, S, C, W and Z. The question is - do we ignore the expanded universe?