Ralph McQuarrie’s art was definitely fundamental in shaping the success of Star Wars and enriching the galaxy far, far away. Some of the most iconic images in all of science fiction came from the mind of Ralph McQuarrie, E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial, original Battlestar Galactica, Close Encounters, the film Cocoon, to mention just a few.
But Star Wars, in particular, owes more to McQuarrie than any other movie franchise. His art is central to Star Wars lore, with Darth Vader, Han Solo, Boba Fett, Obi-Wan Kenobi, Yoda, The Imperial Stormtroopers, R2-D2, C-3PO, Chewbacca, Cloud City, AT-AT Walkers, The planets Hoth, Alderaan, various ships, the death star etc.
“Ralph’s contribution to the Star Wars world is incalculable.”
– George Lucas (in the Ralph McQuarrie: Tribute to a Master documentary)
McQuarrie’s work continues to inspire not just Star Wars fans, but science fiction fans across the world. Among his great works, here are some standouts for Star Wars.
We recommend the book ‘Star Wars Art: Ralph McQuarrie’, it is a comprehensive guide to the artist’s incredible body of work for Star Wars—containing unpublished interviews, insight from colleagues, and two thousand illustrations across two hardcover volumes, encased in a box featuring McQuarrie’s iconic early concept art of C-3PO and R2-D2 on Tatooine.