Strong opinions, weakly held

RIP, Ralph McQuarrie

This morning I read that Ralph McQuarrie has died. Oddly enough, I didn’t even know his name until today, but I certainly knew his work. He was the conceptual designer behind the original Star Wars trilogy, among many other works, and he created the visual world that completely enraptured my childhood mind. It’s strange to think that I didn’t know who deserved credit for that until his passing.

There’s a slide show of his concept art for Star Wars at the official site. It’s amazing how faithful the films are to his renderings.

There’s also an extensive gallery of his work at his official site.

1 Comment

  1. Ralph McQuarrie’s work had such a huge influence on my growing up. From watching Star Wars when I was 7, to discovering his concept art in a dusty corner of my high school library as a senior, to being inspired by the concept artists that were influenced by him, such as Ryan Church and Doug Chiang (concept artist and art director for the Star Wars prequels, respectively).

    In a way, his art direction shaped a lot of my goals as I was growing up, and still does. I never ended up becoming a concept artist (Fate, ignorance among my families and friends perservered otherwise), but I still dabble in concept art, and my taste in movies, in art, in books, and more have all been influenced (if not directed) by the ideas behind the concept design in the original trilogy.

    He is missed.

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