“Pluto from Pluto” after Mel Hunter
By Frank McCabe
In the spring of 1963 I was a junior in high school and purchased for 75 cents a
Pyramid book titled “Nine Planets”. The author of the book, Dr. Alan E. Nourse
worked his way through medical school by writing magazine articles about science
fact and also science fiction. I found this author’s writing style riveting as a
young lad. Today most of the content of this book is quite outdated although in
1963 it was an exciting read. Planet Pluto, the “Mighty Midget” as the author
describes it is more unknown than known and will be explored. The author
speculates on the nature of this mysterious planet in the chapter titled, “Pluto
and the Outer Reaches”.
So this chapter too will become part of the discarded speculation of the past
because in another 7 years new information about Pluto will be gathered by the New
Horizons spacecraft during the July 2015 close
encounter.(http://pluto.jhuapl.edu/) At that time the former planet Pluto will go
from unknown minor planet to known minor planet.
The author had some wonderful assistance in writing and proof reading the book
from well known artist Mel Hunter. Eight of his beautiful paintings are shown in
black and white and can be found between pages 128 and 129. The last one “The
surface of Pluto, with the Sun in the distance” was the one I was looking at to
create this color crayon drawing that I made in the spring of 1963 some 45 years
I requested and happily received permission from Mel Hunter’s widow sculptor Susan
Smith-Hunter to make this post.
Information about these two talented artists can be found at Smith-Hunter Gallery