Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Goodbye, Doug

Doug Chaffee was a seasoned pro before I was born. I learned about his work when I was like 15, at a local science-fiction convention. He had mailed-in prints to the print show.The piece at left, an illustration of Bradbury's "The Martian Chronicles," was among the pieces I saw. This was about 1990 or so when I saw it. I immediately noted the name and the work. As this was pre-internet, that's as far as it went, but I did see his work from time-to-time in years following. I had no idea how old he was at the time. Turns out, he'd been at this illustration game for a long time, in a variety of venues. Doug passed away yesterday at the age of 75.

I met him very briefly at a convention some years ago. Not much more than a handshake at the time. Over the years, I had the privilege of getting to know him a little through some discussion lists we were both members of.  When I was living in Asheville, we talked about me going down to Greenville SC for a visit but I didn't manage it, and of course I regret that now. He was also a gentleman, and this is perhaps a rarer quality than good artist, these days. He was creating art basically to the end. Many of my readers will know him from his work on Magic: the Gathering and other card games, especially through the late 90s and early 2000s. But he'd done so much more over the years, in so many corners of the illustration and art world. He'll be missed.