Ralph McQuarrie (June 13, 1929 – March 3, 2012)

Ralph McQuarrie - Hoth

One of Sci-Fi Arts true legends Ralph McQuarrie has sadly passed away aged 82, Ralph was the visionary concept artist and illustrator responsible for the look and feel of the original Starwars trilogy. Born and raised in Gary Indiana, Ralph moved to California in the 60’s where he was first employed as a technical illustrator for Boeing. Ralph left in 1965 before becoming a commercial artist and designer working on a variety of projects such as these film posters. At the end of the 60’s as part of a three-man team, he animated US TV network CBS’s coverage of Nasa’s Apollo space programme this can be seen here (would love to see more of this). Not too long afterwards McQuarrie was approached by George Lucas to discuss plans for a certain sci-fi fantasy film…

Ralph Mcquarrie - Battlestar Galactica

Ralph Mcquarrie - Battlestar GalacticaRalph Mcquarrie - Battlestar Galactica

Ok so here we have one of the worlds premier Sci-Fi Artist’s featured on Sci-Fi-O-Rama for the first time and I’d like to point out that it’s not on merit that Ralphs not popped up before… Ralph Mcquarrie IS Star Wars, every bit as much as George Lucas and if you seek Star Wars Art (and why shouldn’t you!) I recommend a Google/Yahoo or Flickr image search.

So Back to (70’s) Battlestar Galatica – and following on from the prior post – here are some of  Ralph Mcquarrie’s original concept paintings. Ralph’s work – of course – is pretty close to the finished models/art, but as with his Star Wars art its slightly more streamlined or spindly, in the way that only concept art can be – cooler perhaps?

BTW the reason why this blog isn’t laced with art from visionaries like Syd Mead or Ralph Mcquarrie is that a simple google search (or better yet bookshop) will yield far classier info than I can provide. It’s not that these artists aren’t amazing  (of course they are! )  Sci-Fi-O-Rama is more about