- "Beyond the movies, his artwork has inspired at least two generations of younger artists—all of whom learned through Ralph that movies are designed. Like me, they were thrilled by his keen eye and creative imagination, which always brought concepts to their most ideal plateau. In many ways, he was a generous father to a conceptual art revolution that was born of his artwork, and which seized the imaginations of thousands and propelled them into the film industry. In that way, we will all be benefiting from his oeuvre for generations to come. Beyond that, I will always remember him as a kind and patient, and wonderfully talented, friend and collaborator."
- ―George Lucas
The late Ralph McQuarrie was a visionary conceptual designer and futurist responsible for many of the designs and aesthetics featured in the original trilogy of Star Wars. He passed away in his home on March 3, 2012 at the age of 82.
In addition to the Original Trilogy, he provided concept illustrations for Shadows of the Empire. He also provided the illustration of the Ark of the Covenant seen in a Bible near the beginning in George Lucas' Raiders of the Lost Ark.
In the 30th Anniversary toy series, McQuarrie's concept art is turned into actual action figures. Such figures include a concept Chewbacca, a concept Han Solo, a concept Darth Vader, a concept Starkiller hero (the precursor to Luke Skywalker), two separate releases of the concept stormtrooper and a concept snowtrooper.
Star Wars Art: Ralph McQuarrie, an upcoming collection of McQuarrie's Star Wars artworks, will be released on September 27, 2016. The set will have a foreword by George Lucas and will feature over 2,000 illustrations rescanned and rephotographed from conceptual paintings, costume designs, storyboards, book covers, and Lucasfilm holiday cards.
Influence on the filmsEdit
- "There was an afternoon where we were all gathered, months after Ralph [McQuarrie] actually stopped coming, and George [Lucas] made a point of thanking Ralph in front of everyone. Ralph stood up and said, 'I was one of the first people that George hired,' because Ralph is an unbelievably humble man. George got up and said, 'No, you were the first one.'"
- ―Nilo Rodis-Jamero on McQuarrie's retirement from the production of Return of the Jedi
McQuarrie's artwork was such a major influence on the look and feel of the original trilogy.
Influence on Star Wars RebelsEdit
McQuarrie's work has influenced the TV series Star Wars Rebels in multiple ways.
- The animation style of Rebels is very similar to that of McQuarrie's concept art.
- The design of Lothal was based on some of McQuarrie's concept art.
- The design of Zeb and his species, the Lasat, were based on early Chewbacca art done by McQuarrie.
- A man based on an early McQuarrie design of "General Skywalker" can be seen seated behind Sabine Wren in the episode "Droids In Distress".
- The character Quarrie, introduced in the episode "Wings of the Master", is named after McQuarrie.
- The species that Yushyn belongs to was based one a rough sketch for an alien bounty hunter in The Empire Strikes Back.
- The stylized version of Darth Vader is a reference to McQuarrie's one, also used on the cover of the first edition of the novelization of A New Hope.
- The E-XD infiltrator droids' standard forms resemble C-3PO's original concept art.
Notes and referencesEdit
- ↑ The Art of Ralph McQuarrie
- ↑ Star Wars Art: Ralph McQuarrie (Hardcover) | ABRAMS. abramsbooks.com. ABRAMS Books. Retrieved on September 22, 2016.
- ↑ 22.0 22.1 22.2 Hibberd, James (2014-01-23). 'Star Wars Rebels' interview: New series goes to dark places, embraces 1977 film's spirit. Entertainment Weekly.
- ↑ Hibberd, James (2014-01-23). 'Star Wars Rebels' interview: New series goes to dark places, embraces 1977 film's spirit. Entertainment Weekly.