Friday, 5 June 2009

E H Shepard

Long before he was completely remade into the puffy, shiny, balloonish, merchandise selling icon that we know today, Pooh was a bumbling little bear owned and written about by children's author Alan Alexander Milne. I was lucky enough to find one such publication in one of my many trips to musty London book shop. Flicking through the pages of the weather worn pages of the second edition classic I was constantly blown away by the inky illustrations of E H Shepard. To me, it's these drawings I really love and attribute to the early success of the character. So I'm glad to see that Disney have recently begun to bring back this style for Winnie the Pooh

Not many people also know this but E H Shepard also illustrated the original Wind in the Willows and. To be honest, I only just found out about this in researching this. Interesting to know he also won the Military Cross during the First World War. Sadly though, both Shepard and Milne greatly regretted the creation and success of  Winnie the Pooh, as it greatly overshadowed any work they did in later life. I for one, am glad they did for the originals  still remain some of my favourite children' s novels.

Thursday, 4 June 2009

Perry Rhodan

Perry Rhodan is something I discovered in musty, dusty secondhand bookshops around London. I found a huge stack of these for about 40p each, bought a few and haven't been able to find them again. These were printed in the 70's and I absolutely love the cover artwork even if they have nothing to do with the books plot. The artist behind this particular one is Peter Andrew Jones and the others you see below are done by Angus McKie. Between the two Britsh born artist, they've produced more paintings than you have had hot meals. Except for you Matt Ash, you've had a lot of hot meals.

As for  Perry Rhodan, well, the never ending series of books, comics and spin-offs follow the adventures of (you guessed it) Perry Rhodan. A Buck Rogers styled, space-adventure type guy who's adventures are very, very,very numerous (2450 episodes to be exact). Apparently its the best selling science fiction book series ever. For starters, in your face Star Trek, but  secondly, why haven't I heard of it? I think it might have something to do with the age of it, teetering toward the 50 year mark now and probably well past it's hey day. Also, Perry Rhodan seems to be a very international  series, translated into everything from Russian, to Korean to  Klingon.  But I think, it's mainly because it's a little bit weird.

I'd like to thank the below blog for help in researching all this stuff...
You could also check out the hilarious official site...

Wednesday, 3 June 2009

Space Travel

Honestly, who wouldn't want to travel in space. The excitement, the sights and not so much the smells, the unknowns, it's all too amazing to turn down. Not that I get offered to come to space much. I'm not David Bowie or anything, but it's all so great. No amount of epic accidents, space dangers or aliens seem to put people off wanting to be up there. I do find it strange how horror movies make people really scared of normal things; hockey masks, swimming, four foot high gremlins, etc. But, all these nasty things happening to people in space, such as aliens eating astronauts, demon ships from other dimensions or entire crews of spaceships forced to wear grey slacks and bright polo neck shirts never seem to put people off going there. Maybe it's because we don't actually ever realistically see ourselves ever going there and therefore don't ever stop to appreciate the real danger that such a scenario would bring. Or maybe we just don't care.