Thursday, May 26, 2011

Wonders of Space Travel (1954)

A re-run again. I mentioned this one briefly about a year ago but thought I would share some more scans with you.

These were booklets that were enclosed as extras in Lion magazine.  This 1954 one reused a lot of the Bonestell and Freeman illustrations from the Collier's magazine series.

Some were re-paintings of famous images.

A lot of very beautiful art for such a small booklet.  It even had this great color "center-fold".

I apologize for the lack of posts. there have been a lot less new items in my collection and I haven't had time to do more scans of some of the older ones.  Maybe summer will re-inspire me.  Here are a couple more pages:

Really beautiful images even if re-printed from another source.

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Scholastic NewsTime January 18 (1968)

Scholastic Books had several newsmagazines for children. For the younger ones it was My Weekly Reader and for the older ones it was NewsTime.  It was longer articles, stories, and features.  This issue had a couple of items of interest to me. The first is the cover about trying to solve our trash situation. They suggest that launching it into space might be an option but suggest that the Moon is now off-limits since we were headed there soon.

The second is this very interesting opinion article about whether we should go to the Moon or not.  It shows how the glow of the space race was beginning to wear off as critics were sharing that the money could be better spent other ways.  The race to the Moon was taking too long for some people and alternative views were being shared even with the school children.

The last article is almost an rebuttal to the previous debate. It shows a very nice illustration of our Moon Base.  It is actually the next page in the magazine after the space debate.  It suggests that our landing on the Moon was inevitable and there were some who thought we should have accomplished it sooner. It amazes me that my memories of school and space flight were shown in these magazines.  In 1963 we were in love with space and by 1971 we were bored with it.

Monday, May 9, 2011

Rockets Through Space (1957)

I realized I have never blogged about this book. It is a treasure of space art with some beautiful color paintings.

Del Rey, Lester. Illustrated by Heugh, James. Rockets Through Space: The Story of Man's Preparations to Explore the Universe. New York: John C. Winston Co. (118 p.) 26 cm. (1957)

The book covers all aspects of space travel starting with the theory of rockets and the first planned satellites. It goes on to describe conditions in space, plans for space stations, missions to the Moon, and exploration of the planets.

The paintings by James Heugh are wonderful, a last goodbye to the romantic images of spaceflight illustration. Realism in depicting spaceflight starts to take over from here.

There are lots of copies around including a 1958 reprint (post-sputnik text) and a 1960 updated edition.

The paintings are very beautiful. When I had first put illustrations from this book on my Dreams of Space website ( back in the 1990s, there was not as much space art content on the web. The son of the illustrator James Heugh communicated with me about his father's work in 1994. He said:

"...while searching for relatives I discovered your site and a painting I know
well. Dad is a healthy eighty-something who sculpts, gardens and plays
tennis in Pinehurst North Carolina. I was probably 8 or 9 when that book
Rockets Through Space occupied Dad's loving attention. He worked late
regularly, in a room just at the top of the stairs from my bedroom - in
a beautiful old stone Pennsylvania country farmhouse that I will miss
forever. I watched Dad work like no-one else, I suspect. Looking at his
work tonight (this morning) all these years later brought a flood of

Although he never earned much money for the effort I believe his space

paintings were among those that contain the essence of his pride at the
peak of his power. You really should see the work full size, without the
muddling of the printing process. His meticulous scratchboards (black and
white - ink on white clay board, scratched through for thin white lines) are gorgeous."

 He goes on to share:

"After his 80th birthday, when I gave him a copy of his long lost Rockets

Through Space, he expressed some embarrassment about the now obvious inaccuracy of his imagination: specifically he pointed out that the "starship" (the sphere) couldn't contain enough fuel to have such a huge
flame, nor would it need it. And the skin-tight space suits were all wrong
(although in that case he was following one of the possible solutions as
explained in the text - pressure from the suit's structural "fabric" rather
than a self contained atmosphere.) "

James Heugh did almost no other space art and this was his only full length work.  I really enjoy finding these treasures and hope you will seek this one out.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

The Space Book (1962)

The Space Book is yet another obscure title. I have never seen another and find it memorable for its cover.

Longo, Angelo and Barry, Catharine. Illustrated by Longo, Angelo. The Space Book. New York: Paxton-Slade Publishing Co. (44 p.) 29 cm. (1962)

It is a very basic text about astronomy, rockets and the manned exploration of space. Simple illustrations include planetary surfaces, spacesuits, various launch vehicles and spaceships of the future.  It is part of the "Paxton-Slade Picture-Story Books" series.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Tommy and His Space Ship (1953)

Another beautiful image of children exploring space.  While I don't collect other coloring books, those with space images seem to evoke more than simple entertainment. 

This particular image could be the source of dissertations for its naive imperialism.  There is no doubt that a child would be left with a aspiration to see Americans to the Moon first.