That Flag

The Confederate States of America was founded as a Christian theocracy that supported slavery and state religion, elevating one race and one religion above all others. The resulting war, started by the CSA, was horrible. The CSA’s defeat was justified, and should be celebrated.

The mid-20th century revival of the battle flag in America was unfortunate, embarrassing, and offensive, but reflective of many deep unresolved feelings. It means a great deal to me that the CSA battle flag, a flag promoting the values of state religion and slavery, a flag flown for the purpose of intimidation and repression of rights, no longer flies over many states that I grew up in. Keep up the good work America.

The Art of Star Wars, 20 Years Later

I am part of the post-Star Wars generation, being born just after the release of A New Hope. Star Wars has always been a very important part of my life, and it always will be. But I grew up when Star Wars was quiet. Nothing much happened between ROTJ in 1983 and the Special Editions in 1997. Yes, there was Star Tours. And the PC Games. And the start of the Expanded Universe in the early 1990s. But those were all personal experiences, without the social and cultural overtones that made the Original Trilogy so powerful to experience (so I hear). I didn't know what was going to happen to Star Wars at the cultural level. I certainly would not have predicted that my kids would have much more Star Wars in their lives than I did. I just continued to play John Williams pieces on the piano every year and worked to progress towards my personal goal of building a star fighter.

 
The Art of Star Wars. San Francisco. 1995.

The Art of Star Wars. San Francisco. 1995.

 

Twenty years ago, during my Senior Year in High School, I got to visit an amazing exhibit in San Francisco called “The Art of Star Wars”. My parents surprised me by taking me to the exhibit, and I surprised them by convincing them (Jedi mind trick) to buy tickets to the last-night-of-the-exhibit reception (thanks Mom and Dad!), which included appearances by Anthony Daniels and Kenny Baker, and a speech by George Lucas.

I don’t see this exhibit talked about much, and I just scanned in the photos a few weeks ago. 1995 was a slow time for the Internet after all. I think it’s a fitting May the 4th post, given that this is the 20th Anniversary of the exhibit. I was lucky enough to get to sit in the front row for George Lucas’ speech, and I don’t have much recollection of what he said, but it was so cool to be there.

I look at the events of 1995 as being the start of something big for Star Wars. The Special Editions came out a few years later, followed by the Prequels, followed by another decade of great content, soon to be followed by even more cool stuff. Happy May the 4th!

The Exhibit

These are the props from the Original Trilogy. I think this was one of the first times they were exhibited to the public.

The Reception

Amazing costumes. And the actual Bar.

The Special Guests

Anthony Daniels and Kenny Baker were incredibly nice. Still one of my favorite memories. Galoob was handing out the just released Micro Machines sets.

Bare Metal Aesthetic

Building off of the idea of chrome, here is a literal blast from the past... from San Francisco in 2013. The bare metal aesthetic became synonymous with streamlining in the 1930's. The form is also noticeable for its rotational symmetry, slenderness, and smoothness. And the visible seams make it look interesting. The rocket is cool also.

Stuart and Rocket 2013

Stuart and Rocket 2013

I posted my favorite photo of this artifact over two years ago, in February 2013. Here. Time flies.

Purple and Chrome

These Pepper and Salt grinders are based on a set we acquired in Frankfurt Germany in 2010. The simple form in purple and chrome makes for a very seamless and striking combination.

Rendered on Canson marker paper using Zebra fine-point ballpoint, a Copic Multiliner SP 0.5, and several Copic markers, specifically BV23 (Grayish Lavender), BV25 (Grayish Violet), and BV29 (Slate), plus some Neutral Grays and 100 (Black).

Final rendering (11x14)

Final rendering (11x14)

Initial concept (9x12). The final form was a combination of curvy (left) and straight (right).

Initial concept (9x12). The final form was a combination of curvy (left) and straight (right).

See more of my design sketching work here.