Society of Illustrators Honors Al Jaffee, Syd Mead, Mary Blair, Alex Raymond

The Society of Illustrators in NYC will induct Al Jaffee, Syd Mead, Mary Blair, Alex Raymond and others into their Hall of Fame June 20th.
From the Society of Illustrators:

Announcing the 2014 Hall of Fame Honorees Al Jaffee, Syd Mead, Ed Sorel, Mary Blair, Walter Everett, William Cameron Menzies, Alex Raymond
New York, NY (April, 2014)– Since 1958, the Society of Illustrators has elected to its Hall of Fame artists recognized for their “distinguished achievement in the art of illustration.” Artists are elected by former presidents of the Society and are chosen based on their body of work and the impact it has made on the field of illustration. This year’s honorees include contemporary illustrators Al Jaffee, Syd Mead, and Ed Sorel as well as posthumous honorees Mary Blair, Walter Everett, William Cameron Menzies, and Alex Raymond.The Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony will take place on Friday, June 20 beginning at 6pm.  The Ceremony and dinner are black tie.  Tickets are $85 for members and $125 for non-members.  Seating is limited so please make reservations now by emailing
Al Jaffee  (b. 1921) jaffee_secondplaceAl Jaffee began his career in 1941 working as a comic-book artist for several publications including Timely Comics and Atlas Comics, both precursors to Marvel Comics. He first appeared in Mad in 1955, and as of 2014 remains it’s longest-running contributor.  In 1964 Jaffee created the Fold-In, his prolific Mad feature that is now a signature of the publication. Many artists and comedians, including Stephen Colbert and Jon Stewart, have cited his work during this period as a direct inspiration. Throughout his distinguished career Jaffe has won several awards from the National Cartoonist’s Society, he has been inducted into the Will Eisner Hall of Fame, and in 2008 he won the Reuben Awards’ Cartoonist of the Year.
Syd Mead (b. 1933) Syd Mead’s accomplished career is shown in the variety and breadth of his work.  After graduating from the Art Center College of Design in 1959, he immediately secured a position in the advanced styling studio of Ford Motor Company where his unique design style and illustration technique began to be recognized throughout and beyond the auto industry. After only two years, Syd decided to move on to be able to provide illustrations for multi-national corporations such as United State Steel which in turn, led to him founding Syd Mead Inc. in 1970.  He provided work to clients like Philips Electronics who saught concept designs and illustrations for everything from architectural illustrations to zoom lenses.  Hollywood soon came calling in 1979 beginning Syd’s involvement in the movie industry on such notable films as Blade Runner, Tron, 2010, Aliens, Mission: Impossible III and ELYSIUM. Syd Mead remains an active and versatile artist based out of Pasadena, California, and continues his concept and illustration work for corporate clients while also keeping an active schedule of one-man shows.
Ed Sorel (b. 1929)sore Sorel works in various mediums-pen and ink, pastel, grease pencil, and watercolor-depending on whether he is drawing a political cartoon, illustrating a children’s book, or creating a mural. Whatever his method, his art invariably contains wit, draftsmanship, and gestures that reveal character. Sorel has illustrated covers for Time, New York Magazine, Fortune, Atlantic, Harpers, The Nation, Forbes, The New Yorker (46), American Heritage, and The New York Times Magazine. His murals may be seen in New York at the Monkey Bar Restaurant, and at The Waverly Inn. In 2008 Knopf published The Mural at the Waverly Inn. Knopf also published Sorel’s Unauthorized Portraits, a collection of his caricatures. His drawing of Frank Sinatra on the cover of Esquire in 1966 was purchased last year by the National Portrait Gallery in Washington DC.
Mary Blair (1911 – 1978) blairMary Blair, an honored Disney Legend, began her lifelong multifaceted art career as a graduate of the Chouinard Art Institute in Los Angeles. While her fine art and illustration she created outside of her association with Disney is not widely known, Blair’s bold and groundbreaking color design still inspires many of today’s contemporary designers and animators. Her vision was inseparable from films such as Alice in Wonderland, Peter Pan, Song of the South and Cinderella. She also created character designs for enduring attractions such as Disneyland’s “It’s a Small World”, and she illustrated several children’s books that remain in print. Even if she did not enjoy exceptional fame during her lifetime, many contemporary artists have cited her work as an inspiration. She posthumously received the Winsor McCay award in 1996.
Walter Everett (1880 – 1947) everetBased on the surviving fraction of his work that he himself mostly destroyed, Walter Everett is often judged to be one of the finest painter-illustrators of the Golden Age. He studied with Howard Pyle and worked for a number of popular magazines, including Ladies’ Home Journal, Scribner’s, and the Saturday Evening Post doing mostly story illustrations. His virtuosity kept him in constant demand with art editors, but his blatant disregard for deadlines caused problems. Walter Everett broke off from illustration in his thirties, when he set fire to most of his paintings and retied from the field. Despite his relatively small amount of remaining work, his pieces are greatly admired for their use of color and elegant design sense.
William Cameron Menzies (1896 – 1957) MenziesWilliam Cameron Menzies was an Academy Award-winning film production designer (the first of his kind), and an art director who also worked as a director, producer, and screenwriter during a career that spanned five decades. He established himself in Hollywood with his elaborate settings for The Thief of Bagdad, The Dove, Sadie Thompson and The Tempest. Acclaimed director David O. Selznick hired him for Gone with the Wind, and the term and credit “production designer,” was coined specifically for Menzies to refer to his being the final word on the overall look of the production. It was intended to describe his uncanny ability to translate Selznick’s ideas to drawings and paintings from which he and his fellow directors worked. Due to the vast contributions to his field, William Cameron Menzies was among the first group of people inducted into the Art Directors Guild Hall of Fame.
Alex Raymond (1901 – 1956) power-men1Alex Raymond was an American cartoonist, best known for creating Flash Gordon in 1934, is known as “the artist’s artist” and his personal style has become much admired. His ability to combine craftsmanship with emotions and all the gimmicks of a good adventure strip earned his work immediate acclaim. Aside from his incredibly influential Flash Gordon comic, Raymond also worked on the jungle adventure saga Jungle Jim and Rip Kirby, a private detective comic strip.  Numerous artists, including Jack Kirby and Bob Kane, have cited Raymond as a major influence. George Lucas also noted that Raymond was a major inspiration for Star Wars. He was inducted into the Will Eisner Comic Book Hall of Fame in 1996, and his influence on other cartoonists remains as considerable today as was during his lifetime.

Author: 13th Dimension

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  1. The iconic image from 2001: A Space Odyssey was *not* painted by Sid Mead, it was by Robert McCall. He is not on the list.

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  2. Whats nuts about this is they use this 2001 painting for Syd Mead but it was actually by Robert McCall. Someone isn’t paying attention

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