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Jefferies art

Steve Pace

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Does anyone remember the great artwork (line drawings) by ???? Jefferies in Air Progress mags of the 1950s?
 

aim9xray

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Oh yes. That would be Walter M. "Matt" Jefferies Jr. He later went on to design sets and a spaceship for some TV show produced by Gene Roddenberry...

Here's an example from the Fall 1958 edition of Air Progress...
 

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The Artist

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If my memory is correct, he drew the original line work in pencil at 1/48 scale. He had been working on a large collection of those profiles - with the hope of getting the collection published somewhere - up until the time he passed away. I had the pleasure of looking through a pile of those drawings at a couple of the aviation art forums. His work was (and is) fabulous.

Mike
 

sferrin

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aim9xray said:
Oh yes. That would be Walter M. "Matt" Jefferies Jr. He later went on to design sets and a spaceship for some TV show produced by Gene Roddenberry...

Here's an example from the Fall 1958 edition of Air Progress...

Geek moment here. Did you know the "jeffries tube" was named after him? (The thing you'd see Scotty in fixing things sometimes in the original series.)
 

saturncanuck

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sferrin said:
aim9xray said:
Oh yes. That would be Walter M. "Matt" Jefferies Jr. He later went on to design sets and a spaceship for some TV show produced by Gene Roddenberry...

Here's an example from the Fall 1958 edition of Air Progress...

Geek moment here. Did you know the "jeffries tube" was named after him? (The thing you'd see Scotty in fixing things sometimes in the original series.)

Yes, not in the original series (TOS) but in honour of him in subsequent series.

Also (2nd Geek moment) the Enterprise's famous registry number of NCC-1701 comes from Jefferies' Waco YOC, which was registered NC-17740. Matt Jefferies added a second "C" and simplyfied the numbers as "1701" to form the iconic NCC-1701.

(can you tell I'm a Trekkie?)
 

Triton

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I have heard that the Waco YOC biplane tail number story, though widely told, is apocryphal. Matt Jefferies's story behind the NCC-1701 registry for the starship USS Enterprise:

NC, by international agreement, stood for all United States commercial vehicles. Russia had wound up with four Cs, CC CC. It’d been pretty much a common opinion that any major effort in space would be too expensive for any one country, so I mixed the US and the Russian and came up with NCC.

The one seven zero part - I needed a number that would be instantly identifiable, and three, six, eight and nine are too easily confused. I don’t think anyone’ll confuse a one and a seven, or the zero. So the one seven stood for the seventeenth basic ship design in the Federation, and the zero one would have been serial number one, the first bird.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/cult/st/interviews/jefferies/page6.shtml

In honor of Matt Jefferies' 1935 Waco YOC biplane, Michael Okuda had its tail number added to the CGI model of the Aurora spacecraft stolen by the space hippies in the episode "The Way to Eden" for the updated special effects for Star Trek Enhanced.
 

The Artist

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Since this thread seems to have become more about the man than his art, I'll try to balance it a bit by commenting on both.

First, the art. While I cannot say for sure that his drawings for Air Progress had been done in this same format, the drawings I looked through and watched him work on during the evenings in the hospitality suite at the forums were not stacked as they appeared in the magazine. He did the drawings on velum cut to about six inches by thirty inches so all the aircraft on a sheet were in line. I remember one time someone asked him why he'd sometimes draw two or three lines before measuring to check his dimensions and he replied that he had been working in that scale for so many years that he he could tell the length (in scale) of the shorter lines while he was drawing them. Apparently that was the accepted scale for drawing the plan drawings for studio sets and props so he had been literally using it day and night for years.

Now about the man. He was a fine story teller and at the forums he'd express his desire to see more artists step away from doing nice little airplane portraits and start doing pictures that tell stories involving airplanes. And, Walt did do fully developed paintings as well as doing those profile drawings. At one forum someone asked him what he thought about The Next Generation series (which was still in first run at the time) and he replied by complaining that they had taken his logical and functional design for the bridge and turned it into the lobby of the Hilton.

At another forum someone asked him what it took to get into doing production and art design work. As in many cases, his reply included a story. (I have to paraphrase here because it's been so long since he said it.) 'First. You have to be willing to take criticism. You have to be willing to listen to someone who does not know anything about art tell you that your work is not right and you have to do it over again. Second, You have to be willing to do things that you'd find below what you saw as your current status. For example. You remember that show "Riptide?" In the story the pelican was to spend its time roosting on the helicopter - gracing it. (He shook his head as he said) We couldn't get that damn bird to cooperate. So. I had to pull out a can of paint and a ladder then paint those little details onto the helicopter. While I was doing that I thought - Well Walt. You've certainly defined both extremes of your career. You've designed a starship that will sail the galaxy forever and you've painted fake bird droppings on an aircraft. Everything else should be easy.'

As I said. He was a fine story teller.

Mike
 

Steve Pace

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Mike - please send me an off site email. Thanks!

stevepace43(space for spam)@gmail.com
 

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SaturnCanuck said:
sferrin said:
Geek moment here. Did you know the "jeffries tube" was named after him? (The thing you'd see Scotty in fixing things sometimes in the original series.)

Yes, not in the original series (TOS) but in honour of him in subsequent series.

...Not quite correct. Although it was not mentioned by that name until TNG came along, the movable set piece was known amongst the TOS cast and crew as the "Jeffries Tube", and according to the early Trek fanzines Roddenberry was making reference to this at the sci-fi cons he attended in the days before the Trek cons emerged. Matt himself was interviewed by one - Spockanalia, IIRC - where he himself noted the tube set had been named for him, and that the warp conduit set constructed for That Which Survives was also referred to as a "Jefferies Tube". In addition, numerous scripts make reference to scenes that were to take place inside and outside of the tube set.
 

saturncanuck

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Triton said:
I have heard that the Waco YOC biplane tail number story, though widely told, is apocryphal. Matt Jefferies's story behind the NCC-1701 registry for the starship USS Enterprise:

NC, by international agreement, stood for all United States commercial vehicles. Russia had wound up with four Cs, CC CC. It’d been pretty much a common opinion that any major effort in space would be too expensive for any one country, so I mixed the US and the Russian and came up with NCC.

The one seven zero part - I needed a number that would be instantly identifiable, and three, six, eight and nine are too easily confused. I don’t think anyone’ll confuse a one and a seven, or the zero. So the one seven stood for the seventeenth basic ship design in the Federation, and the zero one would have been serial number one, the first bird.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/cult/st/interviews/jefferies/page6.shtml

In honor of Matt Jefferies' 1935 Waco YOC biplane, Michael Okuda had its tail number added to the CGI model of the Aurora spacecraft stolen by the space hippies in the episode "The Way to Eden" for the updated special effects for Star Trek Enhanced.

I did not know that, I'll check it out....
 

saturncanuck

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OM said:
SaturnCanuck said:
sferrin said:
Geek moment here. Did you know the "jeffries tube" was named after him? (The thing you'd see Scotty in fixing things sometimes in the original series.)

Yes, not in the original series (TOS) but in honour of him in subsequent series.

...Not quite correct. Although it was not mentioned by that name until TNG came along, the movable set piece was known amongst the TOS cast and crew as the "Jeffries Tube", and according to the early Trek fanzines Roddenberry was making reference to this at the sci-fi cons he attended in the days before the Trek cons emerged. Matt himself was interviewed by one - Spockanalia, IIRC - where he himself noted the tube set had been named for him, and that the warp conduit set constructed for That Which Survives was also referred to as a "Jefferies Tube". In addition, numerous scripts make reference to scenes that were to take place inside and outside of the tube set.

Actually, I was referring to that fact that in the show propper, they never use the term "Jefferies Tube", even though it was called that by the cast and crew. The term was not used until TNG.
 

saturncanuck

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Triton said:
I have heard that the Waco YOC biplane tail number story, though widely told, is apocryphal. Matt Jefferies's story behind the NCC-1701 registry for the starship USS Enterprise:

NC, by international agreement, stood for all United States commercial vehicles. Russia had wound up with four Cs, CC CC. It’d been pretty much a common opinion that any major effort in space would be too expensive for any one country, so I mixed the US and the Russian and came up with NCC.

The one seven zero part - I needed a number that would be instantly identifiable, and three, six, eight and nine are too easily confused. I don’t think anyone’ll confuse a one and a seven, or the zero. So the one seven stood for the seventeenth basic ship design in the Federation, and the zero one would have been serial number one, the first bird.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/cult/st/interviews/jefferies/page6.shtml

In honor of Matt Jefferies' 1935 Waco YOC biplane, Michael Okuda had its tail number added to the CGI model of the Aurora spacecraft stolen by the space hippies in the episode "The Way to Eden" for the updated special effects for Star Trek Enhanced.

Also, in a bit of coolness, the Reliant has the registry number NCC-1864. This was done for two reasons: it was after the Enterprise, so it would be a later ship, and it makes refference to the year 1864 when the US Civil War was taking place. When the Enterprise and Reliant battle, it is, in effect, a civil war...
 

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SaturnCanuck said:
Also, in a bit of coolness, the Reliant has the registry number NCC-1864. This was done for two reasons: it was after the Enterprise, so it would be a later ship, and it makes refference to the year 1864 when the US Civil War was taking place. When the Enterprise and Reliant battle, it is, in effect, a civil war...

...And the name "Reliant" was also an in-joke/tip-o-the-hat to Ricardo Montalban, who at that time was as famous for selling Chrysler cars by that name with "Reech Corinthian Leather" as he was for Fantasy Island.

...This Star Trek moment has been brought to you by the many manufacturers of Pills and Soap that buy commercial time on your favorite shows, and help keep Speedy Alka-Selzer equipped with enough blow to plop plop, fizz fizz in your guts all night long!
 

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"Jefferies" or "Jeffries"?? ???

Can this question be settled and the thread's titled be fixed accordingly? Thanks!
 

Stargazer2006

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SaturnCanuck said:
I am a bad speller.

Ooops....

No criticism intended. It's just that I'm very much aware of the necessity to spell adequately for future searches via the forum or Google. It's scary to Google something and see a post you wrote appear #1 in the search list with a mistake in it! (that happened to me once this week, actually). And since SPF is extremely well referenced in Google, whatever you post can be found about an hour later in Google!
 

saturncanuck

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Stargazer2006 said:
SaturnCanuck said:
I am a bad speller.

Ooops....

No criticism intended. It's just that I'm very much aware of the necessity to spell adequately for future searches via the forum or Google. It's scary to Google something and see a post you wrote appear #1 in the search list with a mistake in it! (that happened to me once this week, actually). And since SPF is extremely well referenced in Google, whatever you post can be found about an hour later in Google!

None taken, my friend. Sometimes I think "spell-check" was invented for me.
:)
 

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Jefferies' father was chief engineer at a power plant in Virginia. He had a younger brother named John who worked with him as his chief draftsman. He served in Europe in World War II, was inside of B-17, B-24, B-25 bombers and had four years as a flight test engineer. He was a member of the Aviation Space Writers' Association and one of the original members of the American Aviation Historical Society. Jefferies restored and flew period airplanes as a hobby.


Edit: link removed, it has nothing to do with the topic. Once more and it will be evaluated as the spam, meaning the ban of the user.
 

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I'm currently writing an article on Jefferies for Star Trek Magazine. Have been going through various book sources, including the bio written by his brother, Beyond the Clouds:

http://www.amazon.com/Beyond-Clouds-22Matt-22-Jefferies-Visionary/dp/1933285982/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1298773356&sr=1-1

Other useful books:

-The Making of Star Trek
-Inside Star Trek
-Feb 2000 issue of Star Trek The Magazine, with an article by Jefferies
-several catalogs from Profiles in History auction house featuring Jefferies Trek sketches

Of these, only Beyond the Clouds really discusses his aviation art. It also includes some of his paintings, some of which are outstanding.

At the moment I'm tracking down a story. Solow and Justman, in Inside Star Trek, claim that the attached image from the October 1953 issue of Science Fiction Plus was the inspiration for the Enterprise. It certainly looks very similar. But I'm not sure that it really was the inspiration for the Enterprise. There are a lot of sketches of early designs of the Enterprise and you can see how the design evolved. It seems unlikely that this image just suddenly came along and that was that--especially after Jefferies and Roddenberry had been collaborating for so long and refining the design.
 

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DACguy

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That magazine cover is contained in the TOS Star Trek production files now held in the UCLA library. This would seem to indicate that it was floating around the production offices at the time and would most certainly have been shown to Mr Jefferies. True, it proves nothing but it is certainly suggestive.

Phil
 

blackstar

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DACguy said:
That magazine cover is contained in the TOS Star Trek production files now held in the UCLA library. This would seem to indicate that it was floating around the production offices at the time and would most certainly have been shown to Mr Jefferies. True, it proves nothing but it is certainly suggestive.

Phil

Well, was it part of the original files or something added later? It appears in the Solow and Justman book, and I wonder if the material for that book was turned over to the collection in the 1990s. (In other words, I'd like to know something about the context in which it is in the archives. For instance, is it in a box labeled "research materials 1964"?)

UPDATE: I talked to Mike about this and he thinks that the image was added to the archives in the 1990s after the publication of the Solow/Justman book, so it was not something that Jefferies had back in 1964.


I've now finished my article and after doing a lot of research, and talking to Mike Okuda (who knew Jefferies), I doubt that this was influential. The reason is that there are a LOT of concept sketches leading to the Enterprise design and you can clearly see how it evolved. You can see from the ones that survived that they started with certain shapes, then evolved those into other shapes, then kept evolving them. For instance, an early design was the ringship, which had a sort of arrowhead bridge. But there was another version with the flat saucer instead of the arrowhead, but also with the ring engine. And of course that saucer later emerged with a secondary hull and nacelles.

I doubt that this was a linear process--one design leading to another. They probably had multiple concepts floating around at once. So the saucer ringship combination probably existed around the same time as the saucer nacelle combination. And at some point Jefferies abandoned the sphere nacelles combination. (I also hit on something the other day--the sphere probably was inspired by various lunar spaceship designs that had a big pressure sphere on top of a bunch of fuel tanks.)
 

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My article about Jefferies appears in the new issue of Star Trek Magazine, on the stands as of tomorrow.
 

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Hello!


I'm really impressed with the Jefferies' as one of the Star Trek' creators.
Although, this forum more dedicated to aviation, then sci-fi :D and pictures from 1958 Air Progress looks awesome.


Could someone of the memebers be so kind to scan more "Matt" art and drawings, related to aviation, and place it there?
I'm curious on the types of images, he did made for magazines - only the black-and-white profiles, or color ones, or color images?


Thanks in advance!
 

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