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Journeyman: The Art of Chris Moore
Paper Tiger hardcover £20
review by Peter Schilling
A winning combination of genre and striking non-genre illustrations, and lengthy interview with Chris Moore, Journeyman is a must for all fans of SF, whether you're a collector of art-books or not. Stephen Gallagher elicits candid replies to a broad range of questions about his subject's inspirations, career development, trade secrets, and general working practices - making this one of the best recent books about a jobbing artist and the world of commercial art.
The excellent choice of pictures here sings out loud with science fictional vibes of technocrat supremacy, often evoking a romantic palatial decadence. This is SF art that takes pains to express the, sometimes tortuous, relationship between natural environments and manmade creations, whether it's a starship trailing smoke as it drops from orbit (page 101), or the depiction of a cyborg on Mars (page 71, done for an edition of Pohl's classic Man Plus).
Like Chesley Bonestell before him, Moore is succinctly pragmatic about his work. He's even designed wallpaper. Unlike many of his contemporaries, Moore's ability to capture emotion in facial expressions matches his skill at suggesting the magical awe of machinery (from classic cars to fighter planes), and the wonder of landscapes, which always provide more than just required background detail. He is especially good at women's faces (pages 8, 42, 89, 109, 112, 117), as evidenced by the girl in a 1996 painting for the wraparound cover of Flow My Tears, the Policeman Said by Philip K. Dick (page 75). This takes a stock future setting and imbues it with a brief moment of everyday human behaviour, which engages our attention immediately, and tunes us in to the realistic portayal of such a visually utopian scenario.
Lat's hope Paper Tiger continue to amaze us with classy publications like this.
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