Friday, 14 August 2015

Spaceships and Alphabets

 As I said in a previous post some of the earliest drawing I did was a series of sketchbooks filled with designs for spaceships. These are from the only surviving sketchbook. A friend of mine at Middle school, Carl.Thompson, had a book by an artist Called Foss , he had illustrated many of the covers of the science fiction books I read so voraciously , and my crude drawings were an effort to copy the catalogue style reproduction in the book . I had to invent manufacturers , speeds, armament, crew. Its safe to say that I lived in a parallel universe to most of my contemporaries , the benefit of childhood asthma and chronic hay fever , summers spent indoors watching television and reruns of 30s series like Buck Rogers and Flash Gordon, and an addiction to late night radio 4 and serials like 'Earth search' and ' The hitch hikers guide to the galaxy'

Having read a lot of science fiction and having seen
2001 a space odyssey most writing and film we studied at school seemed tame or just plain backwards , the art of Chris Foss opened up new vistas for imagination to find.

At high school when I should have been studying music I came to design my own alphabet, I think a lot of it came from studying the designs of music notation , maybe some of it was a subconscious drawing in of Tolkiens' elvish script , Tolkien going through one of his periodic revivals then amongst my school friends maybe it was a delight in secrecy, being able to say things in public that people could not decode easily ( though one of my friends James Holt managed to do it - I think he went on to be a graphic designer ) anyway as far as I know this is the only fragment of it I have left :

I used the same script in my final A'level piece as a dedication to a friend who'd seen me through school and kept me going when life did not seem very bright, and If you are out there Michael , get in touch.

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