Martians, robots & flying cities
May 17, 2006 5:12 AM   Subscribe

FRANK R. PAUL: At a time when most Americans didn't even have a telephone, he was painting space stations, robots and aliens from other planets... he was the guest of honor at the first world science fiction convention, and he was the first person to ever make a living drawing spaceships. What could be cooler than that? via the one and only BLDBLOG, with an interesting take on the subject.
posted by signal (19 comments total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
That is just some great stuff, thank you. Some great mayhem in this one. And what the hell is going on here?
posted by marxchivist at 5:54 AM on May 17, 2006

Marxchivist, from the link: "Macey has been working on recovering ancestral memory, which he accomplishes by first putting a subject into hypnosis, then encasing both subject and himself in thought helmets with viewing screens that show memory content."
posted by melt away at 6:21 AM on May 17, 2006

And what the hell is going on here?

Scroll down for explanation. (They're "recovering ancestral memory.") Also from that page:

Bleiler also comments: "Near the end of the story [editor Hugo] Gernsback offered $50 in prizes for the best letters explaining the single great fallacy in the story. The response was heavy."

Great post! (I have to put in a plug for my man Emsh, as long as we're on the subject of sf illustration.)
posted by languagehat at 6:25 AM on May 17, 2006

This is good, I like the Infinite Brain (I can hear the B-Movie voiceover - 'Flee in terror from his infinite intellect!') and there's a nice section on Martian design.
posted by drill_here_fore_seismics at 6:31 AM on May 17, 2006

i like how they called it "scientifiction" on the covers.
posted by c at 7:00 AM on May 17, 2006

Excellent, cheers
posted by ZippityBuddha at 7:03 AM on May 17, 2006

"Scientifiction" was Gernsback's first try at a name for the genre before "Science Fiction" caught on. Does anyone remember that some writers tried to rename it "Speculative Fiction" in the seventies? I think that they were embarrassed of the "BEM" stigma of science fiction.
posted by octothorpe at 7:07 AM on May 17, 2006

and they say bondage tenticle rape by robot was a japanese invention!
posted by skallas at 7:15 AM on May 17, 2006

Wait a minute! Frank Paul, future robots--Paul Frank, retro monkeys. I get it now.

I think the caption for the "bondage tenticle rape by robot" image should be, "It's not what you think dear, he's just a good friend!"
posted by BillyElmore at 7:56 AM on May 17, 2006

The artist who launched 100,000 careers. And that's probably a whopping understatement.
posted by slatternus at 8:04 AM on May 17, 2006

Excellent link. I love the "Scientifiction" logo in the corner of some of them, too. What a great word!
posted by papercake at 9:31 AM on May 17, 2006

The colors and design form are timeless. Though some of them remind me we should sue George Lucas.

Great post. He is one of my favs.
posted by tkchrist at 9:35 AM on May 17, 2006

I may be mistaken, but I believe this image is the one credited in Men Of Tomorrow as the visual inspiration for Superman.
posted by grabbingsand at 9:38 AM on May 17, 2006

I think that's where I saw it, grabbingsand. I just read that book while doing some Superman research. (He beat the Nazis, you know.)

Wonderful link, signal. What an interesting career the guy had. Oddly enough (speaking of influence), some of these remind me of cereal boxes.
posted by LeLiLo at 9:47 AM on May 17, 2006

That Superman link was fascinating, lelilo. What bizarrely off-model coloring.
posted by Faint of Butt at 10:32 AM on May 17, 2006

I just found a couple of those issues on eBay. They'll be framed within a week!
posted by quite unimportant at 11:25 AM on May 17, 2006

Though what the hell is going on in this Frank Paul cover, I have no idea.
posted by quite unimportant at 11:27 AM on May 17, 2006

Holy cats! These are awesome! A new hero!
posted by Joey Michaels at 11:34 AM on May 17, 2006

As someone who makes a goodly part of his living drawing spaceships, I must tip my hat to Mr. Paul and say, "Thanks, buddy!"

I love all this stuff too. The Gernsback Continuum is a place where I like to live. :)
posted by zoogleplex at 2:04 PM on May 17, 2006

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