Tuesday, April 8, 2014

“You did me and my dragons REAL PROUD”

My father didn’t keep a lot of his papers, but, fortunately, one of the letters he preserved was written by author Anne McCaffrey on September 15, 1967 - and which her son has graciously permitted me to reproduce here.

At that time, Dad had just finished illustrating McCaffrey’s early Pern stories for Analog magazine: “Weyr Search” in the October 1967 issue, and “Dragonrider” - in two parts - in the December 1967 and January 1968 issues. Barring any hypothetical doodles by McCaffrey, these illustrations represent the very first depictions of Pern and its inhabitants - just as his pictures for Frank Herbert’s Analog-serialized stories were the first depictions of Dune.

As McCaffrey mentions in the letter, the day before writing, she had the chance to look at a few proofs and originals in the Analog offices in Manhattan, in the presence of editor John W. Campbell and his longtime assistant, Kay Tarrant. As she alludes, too, my father (and mother, as well) were then on safari, as it were, to wolf-and-moose-inhabited Isle Royale in Lake Superior, near the Canadian border, to research his illustrations for The Big Island by Julian May (Chicago: Follett Publishing Company, 1968). By 1967 Dad had begun drifting away from science fiction, partly because he was doing more children’s books and wildlife paintings, and partly because Reader’s Digest, for example, paid about four times as much for a cover than Analog did. Loyalty to Campbell, his mentor and champion, could only go so far with a mortgage and two small kids in tow. (And on behalf of my family and my childhood home, I apologize.)

As you can see, instead of modeling his dragons on your usual, scaly European or Asian types, Dad went with something much more dinosaur-like and (to my mind) “real”. In fact, his dragons are more convincing than his humans, but that wasn’t uncommon for him. Unfortunately, the original drawings and paintings were sold long ago, so the accompanying images were scanned from Analog’s yellowed, halftone pages. But their power still comes through.

So, here’s a scan of the letter itself, followed by an illustrated transcription. Enjoy!

369 Carpenter Avenue
Sea Cliff, N.Y. 11579

Sept. 15

Dear John Schoenherr,

You did me and my dragons real proud and I spent a half an hour drooling over the new black and whites and the cover, which I saw the proofs of which, yesterday in John’s office.

Then you go away and zoomar in on meeses on a distant island and I don’t get the chance to meet you and thank you in person at the Convention…which I had looked forward to doing, thinking surely you'd attend.

But man, those are mighty appealing dragons. Particularly, especially, and triumphantly, the one in which Lessa is enclosed in Mnementh’s talons. Oh, that, I die a little over. How HOW did you manage to convey that foolish bronze’s tender regard and lack of menace in black and white, no less. Superb. Honest, I nearly cried in front of John and Miss Tarrant...which at my age would be a little the other side of enough. But the sketch was so much, so very much what I had imagined in my mind for the scene, I’d swear you were a telepath yourself.

I’m impressed with all the sketches and the covers because I simply am flabbergasted YOU knew what I wanted. And we never met...er nothing. (I do hope we will, although JWC tells me Readers’ Digest and Nat.Geo have now appreciated your talents and hired you away from s-f...our loss, definitely, and their gain.)

As a matter of fact, everyone [after recovering from their initial...‘My God, those things are BIG] at the Milford Conference was commenting in loud and amazed tones on the illustrations by Schoenherr and how lucky I was to get you because you are a zo√∂logist and conscientious about your portrayals.

Oh, that sleeping dragon...the look on the face...I guess, it’s F’lar striding by...that is marvelous...because the are like that, you know. Yeah, you know.

And that marvelous one of Lessa and F’nor in flight to the Southern Continent...that’s great, too...or is that one when Lessa + F’lar are going “between?” Could be but I don’t think so.

I also am pleased you used the scene where Fandarel and his minions are de-threading with agenothree, with F’lar and Robinton in the background. I wanted to see what Fandarel looked like...also that gimmick I thunk up in desperation; and Robinton is a pet character of mine already so I’m very glad he’s in.

As a matter of fact, I am so very, very happy over the illustrations that I am, as you can see, babbling. I’m in orbit anyhow over rating not one but TWO ANALOG covers, and then to have my dragon kind translated so perfectly is joy upon delight.

JWC says you still own the sketches and that I should ask you if I may buy some, if you’re agreeable. I hope you are...you ought to be after I’ve worked on your sympathies for a full page...but I really am extremely thrilled and delighted and should so like to cover the scaling plaster in my ‘study’ with something to inspire me to greater Perns...which are in the offing, by the bye…one doesn’t after all, leave dragons hanging mid-air on a Thread and just leave them...particularly when editors are entranced with the idea and readers are responding.

I realize you are away so I won’t hold my breath til I hear from you. What John told me of your ecological study of the Island of Meese and Wolves is very interesting. May the snows hold off and the moose be distant (Oh, yes, I know about the habits of meese…my stepson was in the Army in Alaska and had an absolutely hysterical encounter (encounter, hell, offensive) with a moose on the highway. [Want to know what is as stubborn as a moose? A Hungarian!])

Also, I would very much still like to meet you and thank you for your superb dragons. When you return to civilization, I hope we can arrange a luncheon or dinner in town. My husband and your wife can talk about things others than science-fiction which bores my husband although he is very interested in Fine Art (which is why he isn’t interested in s-f). That’s sounds rather stuffy, doesn’t it? Well, looks that way on paper.

Oh, and I’m glad you had a close-up sketch of F’lar. You gave him a good strong face. I like F’lar even better... Also the readers will soon like him less, I fear me. Trouble with being a hero, I guess, if you're going to be a real one, you aren't all that popular.

I must stop.

My most sincere thanks,

Anne McCaffrey

Sunday, April 6, 2014

The Cloud Forest

John Schoenherr’s one, slim connection to author Peter Matthiessen, who died yesterday, was his cover for the paperback version of The Cloud Forest, published by Pyramid Books in August 1966. The original gouache painting was marred somewhat by the art director, who - with paints of his own - lightened a patch of sky, ostensibly to make the display type “pop” more. Still, it’s a handsome, dramatic piece.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

John Schoenherr on Studio 360

My friend since the fifth grade, science writer Carl Zimmer, spoke to the radio show Studio 360 about my dad. There's a little slideshow of pictures here and you can stream the interview here. Please look and listen!

(Featured above is “Jack” Schoenherr’s cover for The Radio Planet by Ralph Milne Farley, published by Ace Books. He painted it in the summer or early fall of 1964, during his first few months of living in the New Jersey countryside, where the insects are big.)

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Undersea Suburbs

Not long ago I posted John Schoenherr’s cover for City Under the Sea. Well, now, here are some suburbs under the sea. My father painted this one for the article “Underwater [sic] Suburbs” by Captain Lewis Byron Melson, USN (retired), in the the December 1969 issue of Science & Mechanics magazine. The original painting has yet to bubble to the surface, but I’d sure like to see how it looks without all the display type splashed all over it.

Thursday, October 31, 2013

Tales From The Tomb

According to John Schoenherr’s work log, job #226 came along on February 7, 1962: it was from Dell, a cover for “Tales From A Tomb” [sic] and he was paid $200 for it on April 17.

But did this particular project wind up as the cover for “Tales From The Tomb” issued in October 1962 by Dell Comics? I think so.

The painting, however, has been attributed (here and here and here) to the master comic book artist L. B. Cole, who was an editor and art director at Dell at this time. I haven’t yet learned if the various attributors have any hard evidence that Cole actually painted this - and I readily admit that I’m not too familiar with Cole’s work. Even so, this painting is very different from Cole’s wild, bright, and wonderful work that can be seen here and here and here, for example.

The cover does, however, have many similarities with Schoenherr’s illustrations from the early 1960s: particularly in the handling of the sky, trees, branches, grass, and headstones (and it almost looks like the stone on the left is engraved with his initials, J.C.S.). It’s also worth comparing this cover with that for the Dell comic book “Space Man” which I discussed here and which would have been painted at the same time. So unless I find evidence to the contrary - and with all due respect to L. B. Cole and his many fans - I’ll go ahead and claim that this one really is another “long lost” illustration by John Schoenherr.

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

A New Home for Chewbacca’s Life Story

I just got word that Michael Heilemann’s exhaustive expos√© on the origins of Chewbacca (including John Schoenherr’s unwitting involvement, which I posted about here) has been moved to his new blog.

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

50 Years of Dune

Frank Herbert is purported to have said that John Schoenherr was “the only man who has ever visited Dune.”*

Well, thanks to Schoenherr’s work log, we can pinpoint the exact date of his first trip. Fifty years ago today - on August 7, 1963 - he was commissioned to make a cover and 18 spot illustrations for Parts 1, 2, and 3 of “Dune World” which was to be serialized in Analog Science Fact and Science Fiction starting with the December 1963 issue.


Schoenherr’s expense ledger also shows that on August 7, he took the subway from Queens to the Analog offices in Manhattan (only 15 cents a ride, then). Although he stopped at the offices the following day, too, he was probably given the manuscript during the first of these two visits.


It’s impossible - with Schoenherr’s own records, at least - to figure out which pictures emerged when. Presumably he took notes and doodled as he read or immediately after, and images gradually took shape in no particular order. One page from his oversized sketchbook shows some fairly well-conceived portraits of Dr. Wellington Yueh, with his “square block of a head with purple lips and drooping mustache, the diamond tattoo of Imperial Conditioning on his forehead, the long black hair caught in the Suk School’s silver ring at the left shoulder.”


The final ink-on-scratchboard illustration of Yueh shows that Schoenherr stuck closely to his initial conception.


While sketching Yueh, Schoenherr also jotted down phrases to keep in mind when painting the planet Arrakis for the cover:
ARRAKIS -
VERY DEEP BLUE SKY -
MILKY SUNLIGHT -
GIVES SILVERY CASTE. [sic]
GRAY WINDBLOWN LEAVES
CLAW-LIKE BRANCHES
GRAY & BROWN
And another sketchbook contains an early incarnation of that world.


Fortunately, this was the brief phase in Analog’s history when the magazine’s format went from digest size to so-called “bedsheet” dimensions - and Schoenherr’s work was always helped by more expansive proportions.


Frank Herbert was pleased with the results. In The Road to Dune he is quoted as saying:
Frequently, I have to ask myself if the artist was actually illustrating the story his work accompanied. Not so with John Schoenherr. His December cover caught with tremendous power and beauty the “Dune mood” I struggled so hard to create. It’s one of the few such works of which I’d like to have the original.
According to Analog editor John W. Campbell (quoted in the same book), this cover was “Schoenherr’s sixth attempt, I believe. Getting the feeling of desolation, danger, dryness and action was not easy; he earned his pay on that one!”

Yes, a cool $250. And did Herbert wind up with the original? I’m not sure. But stay tuned for more souvenirs from these first trips to “Dune World”.


*I’m on the lookout for the precise source for this quote, though it appeared in James E. Gunn’s The New Encyclopedia of Science Fiction (Viking, 1988).

Thursday, July 11, 2013

The Planet Buyer

In honor of Cordwainer Smith’s 100th birthday today, here's John Schoenherr’s cover for The Planet Buyer, published by Pyramid Books in October 1964.

This was job #303 in Dad’s work log, and he was hired to do it for $300 on April 3, 1964. That same month he and the family moved from Long Island City to an old farm in rural New Jersey, so The Planet Buyer was probably one of the very first things he finished in the new house (built in 1871 by a Confederate Civil War veteran turned Old School Baptist minister, incidentally - but that’s another story). Before he was able to start renovating the old barn on the property, Dad used a tiny (about 7 x 10 feet) upstairs bedroom as his studio - its low, seven-foot ceiling still bears the scars from the top of his easel scraping against it.

Monday, July 8, 2013

John Schoenherr on a stamp?

From file770.com comes this:
A petition urging the Obama administration to proceed with a set of commemorative postage stamps honoring sf writers - and to make the group much larger and more diverse - has been launched by Chris Barkley on the 106th anniversary of Robert A. Heinlein’s birth.

A five-stamp set had been announced by the USPS Commemorative Panel program in February with a July 2013 release date. Then, Linn’s Stamp News reported in April the issue had been indefinitely postponed. The report also named the writers who had been selected to be on the stamps: Isaac Asimov, Ray Bradbury, Philip K. Dick, Robert A. Heinlein and Frank Herbert.

The petition contains 60 names and requests that they appear on a series of stamps over the next several years, “in groups of six, ten or twelve individuals.”

You can sign Barkley’s petition at Change.org. His goal is to get 100,000 signatures by August 6.
At this writing, only 99,977 more signatures to go!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Amazing Bedfellows


In trying to piece together the early career of my father, John Schoenherr, I’ve been actively accumulating copies of the pulp magazines he illustrated, yet seldom saved. Amazing Stories was one of his early clients, along with others in the Ziff-Davis Publishing Company stable, like Fantastic Science Fiction, Dream World, and Sports Cars Illustrated.

According to his work log, job #28 was a 1 1/2 page illustration for “Monster on Stage 4” by Henry Slesar. He got the commission on May 7, 1957, and must have done it quickly, since he billed for it on May 16. Although it hinted at what was to come, his scratchboard technique was still pretty iffy at this point as he experimented with different ways of rendering form, tones, and texture. And I should note, too, that he based his creature on Edward Valigursky’s cover painting for the issue.

“Monster on Stage 4” was published in Amazing Stories for August 1957, which also contains Dad’s illustration for G. L. Vandenburg’s “Look-Alike Army.” Originally titled “Many Mr. Kanes,” this was job #21, which he got on March 4, 1957, and invoiced for on April 4. It paid $30 - his typical price, then, for a single page illustration - and although finished earlier than “Monster,” his technique feels more confident and refined in this one. Maybe he took more time to do it.

Just last month I bought a copy of the magazine and got to see these pictures - made by a then-21-year-old, unknown, and uncredited John Schoenherr - for the first time. And in leafing through it further, I was surprised to find the following letter from another then-unknown science fiction fan, who went on to even greater notoriety...

Yes, that Roger Ebert, who turned fifteen on June 18 that year.

**********

P.S. (of February 4, 2014) And here’s yet another Ebert letter, written later that year and published in the November 1957 issue of Amazing Stories...

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Space Man, A Stand Up Comic


Another long-lost, early John Schoenherr illustration has come to light, thanks to the work log that I found a few weeks ago: it's the cover for issue #3 of the comic book Space Man, published by Dell in 1962.

It's job #225 in the log, which shows that Dell commissioned him on February 7, 1962, and paid him $200 on April 17. The original painting - wherever it is! - is most likely gouache on illustration board.

This one's closer to his usual fare than the Monster Parade covers, but it's still an oddball - at least compared to much of his other science fiction pictures. Its "retro" quality would make it at home on a pulp magazine or B-movie poster of the 1940s or 1950s. He sure could could lay it on thick, when need be.

Monday, April 8, 2013

John Schoenherr's Monster Parade


This an odd way to commemorate the third anniversary of my father's death, but maybe it'll leaven the gloom.

Last week, going through some paper bags and boxes of Dad's financial records, I found an interesting document: it's basically a log of his paid illustration jobs, numbered consecutively, starting with #1 in October 1956 (when he was a 21-year-old recent Pratt Institute graduate, living in his parents' house at 52-19 39th Avenue in Long Island City, Queens) and continuing all the way to job #258b in December 1962 (when he was 27, married, but still living under his parents' roof - or, rather, his father and step-mother's roof). I realized that I already had found part two of this "work log" that went up to job #324 in October 1964 (by which time he was married, had a 1-year-old daughter, and was living in rural New Jersey) as well as a few less-careful ledger pages itemizing his work through mid-1965.

Dad often didn't keep or get copies of the work he did, so the log - which notes the job number, the commission date, the publisher, publication, title or subject of illustration, type and quantity of picture(s), and fee (and sometimes the date he was paid and the date of publication) -  is bibliographically invaluable. By 1961 he was illustrating almost exclusively for Astounding Science Fiction (a.k.a. Analog) and doing paperback book covers for Ace and Pyramid. But before that he was drawing and painting for myriad now-forgotten publications, mostly science fiction-oriented, digest-sized pulp magazines and larger-format "men's magazines" full of lurid, sexy, and dangerous "true" stories with tag-lines like "I Gave My Legs to the Maggots of Africa"...

One of the houses he worked for was Royal Publications, starting with job #10 - two illustrations for the magazine Infinity - in December 1956. Over the next 15 months he did other things for Infinity as well as Royal's Science Fiction Adventures, Hot Rods, and True War. And then in May 1958 he was hired to do a cover for a magazine noted in the log as "MONSTER P." This - job #93 - was followed on July 31, 1958, by job #105, another cover.

It turns out that "MONSTER P." was short for Monster Parade, which lasted all of four issues. That makes identifying Dad's work a little easier, and I'm pretty confident that the two covers shown here are his work. The spider - featured on issue #2 for December 1958 - most likely came first, and then came the hula-hooping horror icons on issue #4 for March 1959.

A smoking gun by way of a credit or signature would help my case, but the texture of the spider and the handling of the bloody lady-in-distress feel right, and although Dad isn't particularly well-known for humorous subjects, he did in fact, do a lot of them, especially at that point in his career. So I'm planting a flag on these two illustrations on his behalf. Of course, if anyone can provide information to the contrary, please let me know.

 

Saturday, April 6, 2013

If You Can't Face It - Faint


A few years into my dad's illustration career, he began to do spots for a "men's magazine" called MEN. Here's one - probably painted early in 1960 - from a regular feature called "Men and Medicine" by Ken Armstrong.

City Under the Sea


Here's a paperback cover my dad was commissioned to do in December 1964 for Paul W. Fairman's City Under the Sea (Pyramid Publications, Inc., R-1162, April 1965). The novel wasn't connected to the City Under the Sea movie of 1965, but was a TV tie-in to the Voyage to the Bottom of the Sea series on ABC, which, in turn, was based on the 1961 Irwin Allen movie of the same name. Instead of coming up with his own submarine, Dad had to follow the movie/TV design of the Seaview.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Maurice Sendak on THE BARN


Maurice Sendak, who died today, met and corresponded with my father some 43 or 44 years ago. Only four of the letters and just one of the envelopes from Sendak have survived, and I’ve often wondered if Sendak saved anything Dad sent to him. I’m especially curious about his letters, but maybe his presentation copy of The Barn still sits somewhere on a shelf or in a box at the Sendak house.


It was the first book that Dad both wrote and illustrated and it was came out during their brief acquaintance. Dad’s author’s copies were en route from the publisher at the end of June 1968 and he must have mailed one to his fellow author-illustrator not long after. It took a while for Sendak to acknowledge it, though. He wrote in October or November:
You have had dreadful thoughts of me - no doubt! The Barn came weeks ago - & I haven’t been able to write. Please forgive me. The book is terrific & how marvelous that it is all you! That is as it should be. I think it has some of your finest drawings. Thank you so much.
He also - very candidly - explained the delay:
My summer was horrible. My mother, who was ill for two years, died at the end of August. It was ghastly. And my father came all to pieces. The last two months have been taken up with trying to keep him alive. He is in the hospital now - & has an operation coming next week. Of course I haven’t worked. Although - over the last two weeks I found myself wanting to draw again! Hopeful. I’m dreadfully sorry I couldn’t go up to the Bronx Zoo & see your pictures. I would have loved that. But, quite literally, my life hasn’t been my own - & there was no possibility. I hope I can see them - I really hope they all sold! but I’d like very much to see what you’re doing. When all is quiet & somewhat sane again - let’s make plans to meet.
I’m not sure if they ever met again, though they did make a plan the following March. Sendak’s subsequent letters, however, show that a sort of misunderstanding arose over their respective depictions of skunks (in The Barn and The Dangerous Year, illustrated by my father, and in A Kiss For Little Bear, illustrated by Sendak. More on that later). But despite their differences and strong opinions I think they had a real respect for each other’s work and, for better or worse, they weren’t afraid to speak their minds. I like how Sendak closes the letter I’ve quoted here:
I feel bad about not having written to you - I really do. But you will understand. Write when you can.

Yours,

Maurice

 

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Moon Crawler

Although I knew that some of Dad’s pictures inspired certain other things, I didn’t realize that one of his early science fiction covers seems to have inspired a toy or two. So I was happy to share some background information and sketches with the blogger who alerted me. Now, prepare for liftoff to Moonbase Central.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Pulp Fiction: Trapped

Like many young illustrators of his generation, John Schoenherr did whatever hack work he could find after leaving art school. So, while his science fiction and natural history output gradually gained steam, dozens of his early pieces wound up in obscure, lurid “men’s magazines”. Often uncredited or pseudonymous, these pictures were typical of the genre: violent, bloody, and bosomy. Such as this cover from Trapped Detective Story Magazine for October 1959.

Feature Publications’ Trapped lasted for all of 34 issues. Its partner in crime was Guilty Detective Story Magazine and, according to Galactic Central, “Both determined to show that the spirit of the 1940s detective pulp magazines was still alive and well in the 1950s, albeit in a digest format.”

Schoenherr’s files for this phase of his career are far from complete, so there must be more illustrations out there, waiting to be identified. His reference photos might provide some clues, however: it’s just a matter of matching poses to magazine pictures. The following set, for example, was taken on March 19, 1959, for the Trapped cover.






Wednesday, June 22, 2011

One Day on Beetle Rock

I’m embarrassed to say that, until yesterday, I’d never before seen this paperback cover for Sally Carrighar’s One Day at Beetle Rock. Dad’s scanty records show that it was either commissioned or delivered on May 25, 1965, and that Pyramid Books paid him $300 for it. I assume the original is gouache on illustration board.

Friday, April 8, 2011

Rascal Ephemera

Here is an obscure piece of Rascal ephemera, which used Dad’s frontispiece illustration from the book. I think it was a promotional print, sent out by the publisher sometime in the late 1960s, as it came with a flier titled, “Honors for Sterling North’s RASCAL, Winner of the Dutton Animal Book Award, 1963.” It notes:
The fame of the Raccoon from Wisconsin has spread throughout the world to capture the hearts of young and old. RASCAL has been distributed by the Book-of-the-Month Club and by two other book clubs. It will soon be made into a Walt Disney film. A nationwide bestseller for six months, RASCAL numbers more than 115,000 copies in print.
It was also a flat-fee job that netted all of $1000 for Dad. But the “Raccoon from Wisconsin” helped put him on the children’s book map.

Jacket for The Golden Eagle

Dad’s jacket art for Robert Murphy’s The Golden Eagle, published by Dutton in 1965. I assume the original painting was gouache on illustration board.

From Incident at Hawk’s Hill

I keep looking and looking, but I just can’t find the reference photo that Dad used in making this illustration for Allan W. Eckert’s Incident at Hawk’s Hill. He and I posed for it - and that’s pretty much me (or a scrawnier version of me) and although the father’s head isn’t Dad’s, the strong forearms definitely are.


UPDATE of April 12, 2011!
I found the photo - it was hiding in plain sight. And, yes, Dad’s arms are much like the dad’s in the illustration. Also, I am indeed plumper than the boy in the book. If only I had been raised by a badger on the Manitoban prairies!

On the left in the background is Dad’s jacket illustration for “The Jezebel Wolf” by F. N. Monjo.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Sherlock Holmes and John Schoenherr


Note: This post was significantly expanded on April 8, 2014

My father introduced me to Sherlock Holmes when I was 11. I’d already been watching the Basil Rathbone movies and drawing pictures of the character, so, technically, the introduction had been made years before, but it was then that ever-logical Dad suggested that I read the original stories so I'd know who Holmes and Watson really were.

Before long, I’d become an absolute fanatic and, besides collecting everything Sherlock Holmes-related I could get my hands on, I appropriated the original art for Dad’s sole Sherlockian illustration. He made it for Mack Reynolds’s science fiction story, “The Adventure of the Extraterrestrial,” which appeared in Analog magazine for July 1965. It was job #303 in his work-log, commissioned on March 29, 1964, and it was either one of the last jobs he did in his Long Island City studio, or one of the first ones his did in the small bedroom workspace in his new, old house in rural New Jersey. The ink-on-scratchboard drawing netted him $150.00. By the way, for copyright reasons, the aged Holmes seen in the picture was only referred to as “The Great Detective” in the text.

I always thought Dad’s Watson resembled his own father, though my Grandpa Schoenherr never had a walrus mustache like that (he did have his own copy of The Complete Sherlock Holmes, however). I remember, too, Dad pointing out that he’d deliberately updated Holmes’s unanswered-correspondence-tranfixing-jack-knife with a more modern switch-blade.

My father was definitely a Sherlock Holmes fan (though never a crazed one) and he attended scion society meetings with me before I could drive. He also enjoyed Arthur Conan Doyle’s Brigadier Gerard tales and it was a long-time wish of his to illustrate The Lost World - featuring Professor Challenger, who my father resembled somewhat. (Dad never got the chance - though this painting hints at what could have been - but, evidently, his one-time brother-in-law, Ray Sternbergh, painted the cover for the Pyramid Books edition of the novel.)

I should note that a few months before making this illustration, my father received the following letter from the Little Green Man Science Fiction Awards Society of Kansas City, Missouri.


Devoted Sherlockians will recognize one of the names on the letterhead. Here, too, is the April 1963 cover mentioned in the letter - and still more devoted Sherlockians should note that the author of the cover story, Winston P. Sanders, was the sometime-nom-de-plume of Poul Anderson.