Over the past few years, I’ve become increasingly fascinated with the whole extraterrestrial phenomenon, both as a human being and artist. Mostly via the internet, new reports, videos, photos and stories of UFO’s and encounters are sprouting up almost on a daily basis, from all over the world and all kinds of people. Sure, some are hoaxes and some can simply be explained as Earthly phenomena. But it’s harder to dispute the growing testimony from highly credible witnesses — former government and military officials, pilots, flight controllers, law enforcement officers, scientists and regular folks with no apparent reason to lie. Something is going on out there or maybe, right here.
I think it’s fair to say that most people accept the possibility that other life exists in the universe. Even the Vatican acknowledges this. We have found evidence of water and what appear to be microbes from Mars. What if we open our minds further? Human civilization dates back roughly 10 to 20 thousand years. Not even a wink of an eye in astrophysical time. It’s not a great leap to think there might be other civilizations, perhaps a great number of them, hundreds of thousands, or even millions of years more advanced than our own. We couldn’t even begin to grasp the technology they might have. Have they progressed beyond war, greed, money, politics, physicality? Interstellar travel to them would be trivial.
From an artist’s perspective, what would they look like? Most of us are familiar with the common representation of aliens, the sinister little creature with a big head and dark almond-shaped eyes known as the Zeta Grey Reticulan, or simply, “Grey.” Actually, within the community of people who believe in intelligent extraterrestrial life, there seems to be some eighty to ninety distinct, “known” or at least thought-to-exist races. There is a lot of information from a wide range of sources; alleged abductee, contactee and “channeled” accounts, scientific and journalistic reports, videos, photographs and sketches. But there seems to be very little in the way of high-quality visual images of the extraterrestrials themselves.
So a team of artists and I decided to get to work. As far as we can tell, this is the first time a compendium of detailed illustrations of the “known” extraterrestrials has been put together. Within the community of believers, there is both consensus and disagreement about how many of them appear. We tried our best to be faithful to generally held views and used artist’s prerogative to fill in the gaps. I am thankful for the team’s versatility, talent and hard work. This book is a collection of artists’ visual impressions and fiction. We are not and do not profess to be experts in the field of extraterrestrial phenomena. We hope you will enjoy this illustrated book as much as we enjoyed working on it.