You need to upgrade your Flash Player The theme of this blog is not only and obviously space, but in particular “terrestrial worlds”, places that tend to have surfaces on which one could walk or at least attach oneself to. These places sometimes also have other earth-like familiar features such as atmospheres, weather, volcanos, geysers and perhaps, we are finding, even exotic oceans, rivers or lakes that are not necessarily made of familiar materials we are used to here at home. The second theme is imagery. Occasionally I do some retouching of images when needed if an image is incomplete or sometimes “dirty” or noisy. I will attempt to correct image shortcomings based upon other images or well-accepted presumed attributes. When this is done, notes will be offered as to what was added, why and sometimes how it was done. This way no one should ever wonder if something they are looking at is real or photoshop.

Archive for the 'fiction' Category

Film: Europa Report

Tuesday, July 2nd, 2013


How did I miss this? Europa Report is based upon a future manned mission to Jupiter’s moon Europa. It was developed with mission specialists from NASA — so the details and events depicted are presented in more sciFiFact than in the traditional Hollywood SciFi. Sounds pretty incredible for lovers of real space exploration.

The Enterprise Emerges From Titan

Thursday, September 24th, 2009

Nice example of science meets Hollywood.

Chopping Block’s Tribute to Apollo (Circa 1998)

Tuesday, July 21st, 2009

Chop NASA Emblem
Not as long ago as 40 years ago, but just a little over 10 years ago – The Chopping Block adopted the look of NASA Chop Geminifor one of our online incarnations. More specific our adopted look embraced the era of Apollo in hopes that a little of that former astro-glory might rub off on our small New York graphic design studio which was at that time only about a year old. So we thought it appropriate on this 40th anniversary of the touchdown at Tranquility Base, that we revisit our own journey through cyberspace and our small tribute to the historic landmark that is Apollo. (more…)

My Sci-Fi Bookcover Past II

Saturday, June 16th, 2007

Mars Underground

Scored another one. This time it is hi-res and I think this came out around 1996. I also just happened to get a copy of “Mars Underground” (unrelated) on DVD just yesterday which is about Zubrin’s “Mars Direct” concept of getting men (and women!) on Mars. I am thinking perhaps now this may finally be embraced as NASA’s Mars 2.0 plan going forward?

My Sci-Fi Bookcover Past

Saturday, June 9th, 2007

Halflife Cover

Once upon a time I did a large number of book covers (or dust jackets) for a Sci-Fi publisher known as Tor Books. While looking through old back-up files today I found this one that featured Saturn’s rings and it’s now famous moon Titan. Since I am currently working on a poster that celebrates the Cassini mission, I thought I should post this design on here as it happens to be one of my favorites.

I would have to guess that I have been involved with designing around 200 book jackets designs for Tor, both before and after starting the Chopping Block. Among some of the more famous titles I got to work on were Jonathan Lethem’s “Gun with Occasional Music”, Kim Stanley Robinson’s “The Three Californias” trilogy and vampire title, (soon to be a major motion picture) “I am Legend”. The Lethem and “Legend” books had provided artwork, but we also got to do a few other Lethem titles where we did all the art as well as the design.

Image Note: I found this file (not shown) I thought was the hard cover artwork, but instead it was the less impressive mass market edition of the jacket. I will upload a better hi-res version next week when I get back to the office. In the meantime I found this version online of the hard-cover and tried to clean up the jpg artifacts the best I could.