Wired recently ran an article on the 74 things every great Stars Wars movie needs. On the recommendation of the New Yorker’s creative director Wyatt Mitchell, Stanley Chow was drafted in on illustration duty. "The brief was simple," Chow says. "'Here are 10 little articles about Star Wars - go illustrate them.'"
Many of the short pieces were written by people within the film and TV industry - including the writers and directors behind Looper, Lost and Battlestar Galactica. Chow created caricatures of them holding props and dressed in Star Wars garb.
His illustrations also include a bullet-dodging Princess Leia, a Stormtrooper striking a pose in a top hat and scarf, and an amorous R2D2 - all of which were created in Illustrator (opens in new tab). "I read the articles and illustrated what I felt would work. I wasn’t really given any art direction. I guess they trusted me to do what I wanted."
While Star Wars fans are notoriously hardcore, Chow says the reaction to the illustrations has been very positive: "The illustrations have been a hit. I posted sneak previews on Instagram (opens in new tab) and I’ve had positive feedback - people have been asking if they will be made into posters."
If Chow could have any Star Wars character illustrate him, he knows exactly who he would pick: "A Gamorrean guard," he says. "I just think they look brilliant - ugly and brutal, but cute at the same time. I watched Muppets in Space with my kids, recently, and I’m sure Jim Henson had something to do with the design of the Gamorrean guard."
This article was originally published in Computer Arts (opens in new tab) issue 212.