2. Favorite Illustrators

Illustrators I Greatly Admire

        Over the many past years in which I’ve been involved with various aspects of design, drawing and imagining, I’ve been influenced and inspired my many.  Writers, Illustrators, films, music and much, much more.

        To say the least, Illustrators have had a monumental effect on me.  I collect large, coffee table books on many subjects such as Sci-Fi films and history, office design and planning, The American West, history, art and individual artists.  Of all the Illustrators who’s works I’ve had the pleasure to enjoy, there are three who seem to have had the greatest effect.


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Michael Whelan


Dragon 1

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        Like so many millions of others, I became enamored with Michael Whelan’s work from his outstanding book covers for the the “Dragonriders of Pern” series.  I then had the most excellent experience some years later of meeting Michael at the Balticon Science Fiction convention in Baltimore Maryland.  I had the great fortune to not only speak with him for quite some time, but attained two of the Dragon cover prints, signed and dated.  Michael gave a terrific presentation with a slideshow of many of his works in which I learned a great deal about why I liked his illustration so much.  He explained that for any book cover, he actually read the book.  This is why his depictions rang so true to the readers such as myself.  And I am one serious nit-picker.

        His covers for the latest release of the Edgar Rice Burroughs “Mars” series are simply excellent and a collection I would like to have.

        I believe it was Michael Whelan’s principals that helped make me so dedicated to making my own designs as accurate to the source material as I possibly can.  Whether that be the unreality of the Nautilus or the needs of a high-tech workplace environment.

So thank you Mr. Whelan


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Ron Cobb



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        Being the high-tech work and space planner and designer that I am, it should come as no surprise that I also have a serious passion for futuristic set designs for Science Fiction films.  This goes back even before I experienced the Nautilus in the Disney film in 1954.  Such films as “Forbidden Planet” and “When Worlds Collide” had me enthralled.  I just love futuristic places.  This is also another of my book collections; Sci-Fi films and related design art.

        Even before I saw the film “Alien”, the first in that film series, I had purchased all the behind the scenes books I could find after one look at the pre-production art for the movie by Ron Cobb.  I was impressed beyond words.  To this day, one of my most favorite design illustrations is “The California Suite” that Ron did as a concept for the spaceship Nostromo in the “Alien” film.  I like it so much I just had to use it for this web site header.  Beautiful!

        I was so effected by the Ron Cobb concepts for operation consoles, control rooms, and many other futuristic work places, I must admit to their influence on my own designs.  Not so much the exact console or room layout, but more the functionality and practicality of the concept.

        Much later, having the privilege to spend many years working in Communication Satellite Control Centers and Operational Work Complexes, I was able to see first hand what principals worked, and what didn’t.  But I had the good fortune to have been exposure to the work of creative space planners, designers and illustrators, not restricted to conservative business budgets.

        Ron Cobb’s illustrations taught me how the work place could be, not what it must be restricted to.  A mind broadening experience in the extreme.

Thanks you as well, Mr. Cobb.

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Syd Mead


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        I was greatly impacted by the creative abilities of Syd Mead after coming across his Illustration book;

Steel Couture – Syd Mead – Futurist Sentinel

         Then when I saw “Blade Runner” the film, I recognized his work on the vehicles and the set design.  His pre-production art work on “Aliens”, the second film of that series, further caught my attention.  As futurists and visionaries, Syd Mead and Ron Cobb are two amazing illustrators and have helped me enormously with my own visualizations for the workplace and future vehicle design.

My gratitude to you Mr. Mead.


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