Photoart for MLC-3 Box
Here you see several pieces of the original photoart used to create the box for the MLC-3 mini-rig. Basically, the term photoart applies to photographs that have been modified or enhanced in some way--usually using airbrushed paint effects--so that they may be used as the masters for mass-produced printed images. Today, with most commercial graphics work being done on computers with the help of programs like Adobe Photoshop, I suspect there is little need for hand-created photoart in the toy business. But during the '80s, when Kenner was producing their Star Wars line, it was standard practice. The first photo on this page displays the piece of black paper that covers one of these pieces of art. Since all the covers of the various images featured here look more or less the same, I've only included one as an example. As you can see, "MLC-3" is written in crayon on the cover. That's the logo of the graphics company you see in the lower right corner.

This first image is for the front of the package and it's larger than the rest. You can make out some blue airbrush overspray off the right edge of the image.

Next up is one of the smaller images that appeared on the package.

Another secondary image, this one demonstrating the movable guns of the toy.

Lastly, we have a closeup of the previous image. The blur effect you see on the guns was created with airbrushing effects. I think there is a risk that these pieces will come across as boring or insignificant to some collectors. But one has to keep in mind that they are the original masters for images that were eventually printed on many thousands of toy packages. And a lot of care went into creating them. Neat stuff. One of the later phases of the development of the MLC-3 box, the cromalin print of the package, can be seen here.

Description by: Ron Salvatore
Photo: Ron Salvatore
From the collection of: Ron Salvatore
Country:United States
Film:Empire Strikes Back
Category:Prototypes / Product Artwork


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