Concept artist offers glimpse into creative realm

Illustrator Iain McCaig will talk about Star Wars images and other projects at Victoria comics store

Iain McCaig, an award-winning concept designer for some of Hollywood’s biggest blockbusters, will take time out from development of his upcoming feature Witchball to make a rare public appearance at Legends Comics and Books Saturday.

McCaig, 51, will chat with fans, describe what it’s like having worked with such screen giants as George Lucas and writer-director Andrew Stanton (John Carter of Mars) and sign copies of his new book Shadowline: The Art of Iain McCaig.

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Featuring a foreword by Nick Sagan, the glossy hardcover is a 28-year retrospective of McCaig’s film and publishing achievements, his personal artwork and projects such as his striking album art for Jethro Tull’s Broadsword and the Beast.

“It’s not just stuff I’ve drawn for films I’ve worked on, but for those that never even got made,” McCaig says.

“There’s even unused material I did for Star Wars — massive amounts of stuff that never got made.”

The pencil-and-ink sketches, drawings and digital renderings are accompanied by his fictional narrative detailing a stranger’s visit to McCaig’s creative universe, and four art-lesson booklets tucked in to illustrate his belief anyone can learn to draw.

Although McCaig is best known for his concept and character creations for Lucas on his Star Wars prequels — most famously as designer of Queen Amidala and Sith warrior Darth Maul — he has also contributed to films including Terminator 2, Interview With the Vampire, Charlotte’s Web, Hook, Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire and The Spiderwick Chronicles.

Prepare to be inspired. The Santa Monica-born author, illustrator and concept artist’s enthusiasm is infectious.

“When I walk downtown and see teenagers sitting there I think, ‘If I could just put a camera in their hands or show them how to write about the world they live in,’” says McCaig, who dreams of one day turning Victoria into Canada’s storytelling capital.

He will appear from 2-5 p.m., with a window display celebrating some of his most popular characters created for the occasion. Legends is at 633 Johnson St.

For more information call 250-388-3696. 떠

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