Combat Gallery Sunday: The martial art of Robert McGinnis

Cincinnati, Ohio-born Robert E. McGinnis was more teenager than adult when he shipped out with the Merchant Marine in World War II. Surviving this tough service in steel ships under constant threat of torpedo and aircraft attack, he switched gears in his twenties to becoming an apprentice at Disney studios once peace broke out and the bulk of the U.S.-flagged cargo ships and tankers were laid up or sold to overseas carriers.

By the late 1950s, after swinging through Ohio State to see what they know, McGinnis fell into his groove of making book covers for Dell (the publisher, not the computer maker) during what is known as the “golden age of paperbacks.”

Bantam paperback cover for Captain America By Robert McGinnis

Bantam paperback cover for Captain America By Robert McGinnis

The typical McGinnis formula in which you can almost always see the tough guy's eyes, but the dame, (especially her eyes) is more of a mystery.

The typical McGinnis formula in which you can almost always see the tough guy’s eyes, but the dame, (especially her eyes) is more of a mystery.

mysterious female number 2

mysterious female number 2

McGinnis artwork forumla example number 3.  Toughguy+ mysterious long legged lady= buy this book!

McGinnis artwork formula example number 3. Tough-guy+ mysterious long legged lady= buy this book!

These 1200 books were a staple of airport newsstands, drugstore book racks, post/exchange library shelves and the like for generations, proving to be the bibles of sort of the soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines while deployed throughout Vietnam and later years.

He also spent lots of time providing illustrations for Time, Argosy, and a number of other periodicals of the time.

Robert McGinnis cover

Ernie Pyle illustration from Argosy.

Ernie Pyle illustration from Argosy.

mcginnis247

Throughout the 60s and 70s, he was perhaps best known for his 40 or so movie posters and other artwork for the film industry that encompassed much of the Sean Connery/Roger Moore-era films covering the adventures of Commander James Bond, RNR (loaned to Her Majesty’s Secret Service).

Casino Royale artwork By Robert McGinnis

Casino Royale artwork By Robert McGinnis

Thunderball artwork By Robert McGinnis

Thunderball artwork By Robert McGinnis

The Man with the Golden Gun artwork By Robert McGinnis

The Man with the Golden Gun artwork By Robert McGinnis

Bond artwork By Robert McGinnis

Bond artwork By Robert McGinnis

1965 Thunderball artwork By Robert McGinnis

1965 Thunderball artwork By Robert McGinnis

Thunderball artwork by Robert McGinnis

Thunderball artwork by Robert McGinnis

McGinnis also covered the American James Bond...

McGinnis also covered the American James Bond…

James Coburn from the vastly underrated 1971 Sergio Leone film, "Duck, You Sucker!" also known as "A Fistful of Dynamite"

…..And for Spaghetti westerns such as this artwork of James Coburn from the vastly underrated 1971 Sergio Leone film, “Duck, You Sucker!” also known as “A Fistful of Dynamite”

McGinnis also did travel ads and a famous set of very Bond-like artwork for Stella for the UK Mothers ad firm.

McGinnis also did travel ads and a famous set of very Bond-like artwork for Stella for the UK Mothers ad firm.

He also painted a number of excellent gallery pieces covering everything from shipwrecks to the American West

Red River Valley By Robert McGinnis

Red River Valley By Robert McGinnis

First Move Baja By Robert McGinnis

First Move By Robert McGinnis

Spanish galleon By Robert McGinnis

Spanish galleon By Robert McGinnis

McInnis, now age 88 and respected a member of the Society of Illustrators Hall of Fame (class of 93), continues to be active, producing very pulpy throwback-style covers for the Hard Case Crime series paperbacks today.

Quarry's Choice Paperback http://www.hardcasecrime.com/books_bios.cgi?title=Quarry%27s%20Choice by Max Allan Collins with illustration by Robert McGinnis, set for publication January 6, 2015. If you didnt know better, you would think this book came up in 1958.

Quarry’s Choice, paperback by Max Allan Collins with cover illustration by Robert McGinnis, set for publication January 6, 2015. If you didn’t know better, you would think this book came up in 1958. Also, can you spot the formula!?

Thank you for your service, and your continuing body of work, Mr. McGinnis.

For more and to buy prints, see his official gallery

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About laststandonzombieisland

Let me introduce myself. I am a bit of a conflict junkie. I am fascinated by war and warfare, assassination, personal protection and weaponry ranging from spud guns and flame throwers to thermonuclear bombs and Soviet-trained Ebola monkeys. In short, if it’s violent or a tool to create violence it is kind of my thing. I have written a few thousand articles on the dry encyclopedia side for such websites as Guns.com, University of Guns, Outdoor Hub, Tac-44, History Times, Big Game Hunter, Glock Forum, Firearms Talk.com, and Combat Forums; as well as for print publications like England Expects, and Strike First Strike Fast. Several magazines such as Sea Classics, Military Historian and Collector, Mississippi Sportsman and Warship International have carried my pieces. Additionally I am on staff as a naval consultant and writer for Eye Spy Intelligence Magazine. Currently I am working on several book projects including an alternative history novel about the US-German War of 1916, and a biography of Southern gadfly and soldier of fortune Bennett Doty. My first novel, about the coming zombie apocalypse was released in 2012 by Necro Publications and can be found at Amazon.com as was the prequel, Chimera-44. I am currently working on book two of that series: "Pirates of the Zombie Coast." In my day job I am a contractor for the U.S. federal government in what could best be described as the ‘Force Protection’ field. In this I am an NRA-certified firearms, and less-than-lethal combat instructor.

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