Mel Birnkrant's “Annotated Archives”
FIRST PACKAGE SKETCHES
Copyright Acknowledgment: All images of THE OUTER SPACE MEN , THE WORLD OF THE FUTURE and other Products and Images, created by Mel Birnkrant, are Copyright (c) MEL BIRNKRANT
I never dreamed that I’d be adding to this Archive, which I put together in 2009. But here I am, five years later, still alive, on the 6th of May, 2014, adding some newly discovered drawings that are 45 years old. They have been lost for nearly half a century. I just found them an hour ago.
Crawling around in the storage area, behind my desk, under the floor, I saw a box marked “Art from Drawers” that I haven’t touched for many years. Opening the lid, I discovered a treasure trove of original drawings for toys I, long ago, forgot I did. And among them was this, a group of rough sketches, very rough indeed, that represent my first attempts at a packaging concept for the OSM.
The draftsmanship is not impressive, nor was it intended to be, but they are interesting, historically. At the bottom of some pages you will see Harry Kislevitz’s hand written comments. I will reproduce them here, full size, in their entirety, in the order that they were stapled together.
It’s clear that when these sketches were done we hadn’t yet decided on the names. I guess I just wrote in anything. “Alpha Seven” was called “ASTRO” or “ASTAROTH,” and “Colossus Rex” was God knows what!
On this, the final drawing, you will see Harry’s comment, “This looks good!” It represents the very moment of creation and decision. Behold, how closely the sketch resembles the final package!
These bring back many memories; among them one that I forgot: Harry’s first born son, “Andy,” is the eldest of a clan of six. He and his two brothers, Adam, and Noah, were destined to become my business partners. “Andy” had a most unusual name. It was, actually, short for “ANDROC,” a name that Harry, himself, made up! And these sketches have reminded me that “ANDROC” was the name that we originally intended for “Commander Comet!” “Electron +” was apparently called “ZARCON” and came from Uranus!