Tag Archives: Classic Collection Artist

A Ride With Greatness———Chung Kim’s Exclusive In-Car Interview With “Classic Collection” G.I. Joe Artist-Illustrator Extraordinaire, Larry Selman

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Ready to Fly— GIjOE B-17 Bomber Crewman (Art: Larry Selman)

Okay, let’s all take a deep breath, sit back and just CHILLAX. Even with yesterday’s jarring news that the GIjOE Collector’s Club and its “JoeCons” will soon be no more, there’ll still be a plethora of GIjOE-related shows for fans and collectors to attend for the foreseeable future, especially in fan-rich, high-population states such as Georgia, California, Ohio and Texas. In addition to those events, GIjOE “expatriates” and Action Man fans living in countries such as the UK, Mexico and Brazil have long proven that they can survive (and yes, THRIVE) without control from a so-called “official” GIjOE or Action Man fan organization, and that they will continue to do so for many years to come.

So… Let’s all just take a moment to regroup, relax and enjoy some insightful “insider-intel” from ace TJR field reporter, Chung Kim, who graciously provided the following exclusive interview with GIjOE Classic Collection artist, Larry Selman; conducted interestingly enough, during a car ride through the streets of beautiful downtown Atlanta, GA, in the waning hours of Joelanta 2016. Enjoy!



Intrepid TJR Field Reporter, Chung Kim (Photo: Chung Kim)


“I attended JOELANTA 2016 this past weekend. I enjoyed myself. I experienced a truly one of a kind moment when I (and my friend Scott Norris) had the opportunity and pleasure to ride with Mr. Larry Selman. He is the artist responsible for the painted artwork used by Hasbro for their line of GI JOE Classic Collection figures. After the show ended, a number of attendees usually go out to a nearby restaurant as a post-show ritual for dinner, conversation, and to also watch THE WALKING DEAD. I’m not that familiar with the Atlanta area, so Buddy Finethy arranged for me and Scott to ride along with Mr. Selman.


Larry Selman, renowned GIjOE packaging illustrator and artist (Photo: Larry Selman)

He drove us to the post-show dinner at Mellow Mushroom Pizza. During the ride there, I apologized in advance to Mr. Selman for going into fanboy mode and asked him some questions about how he came to the opportunity of creating some truly memorable artwork on the GI JOE Classic Collection box covers.” He told me prior to his involvement with Hasbro, he was primarily known for doing western-themed artwork and the opportunity presented itself for him to create a variety of painted artwork used for the GI JOE Classic Collection boxed figures. This was during a time when Hasbro had an actual art department dedicated to the GI JOE product line. His personal favorite GI JOE Classic Collection artwork is the one used for the Blue Angels Pilot figure. In addition, when he did the artwork for the series of Classic Collection figures based on real life Medal of Honor recipients, he told me that the artwork used to portray the real life HOH recipients had to be approved by the actual recipients (who were still alive at the time) or through their estate/family.”

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Whoosh! Selman’s outstanding artwork for GIjOE’s Blue Angel Pilot box. (Art: Larry Selman)

“In particular, he told me how he spoke with Audie Murphy’s son and the discussion they had with regards to appearance and depiction of Audie Murphy used on the box cover for the figure as well as some historical references and research he performed to capture the action moment that earned Audie Murphy the MOH.”


This will BLOW YOU AWAY— Can you imagine a better way to decorate the wall of your Joe Room than a new 2016 calendar (available HERE) from famed GIjOE artist, Larry Selman? His stunning painting of MOH recipient, Audie Murphy (above) was featured for January. Out-STANDING! (Photo: Mark Otnes)

“Given how my collecting niche is 1:6 scale female figures, I asked him about the background behind the artwork used for the GI JANE figures produced by Hasbro under the Classic Collection line. It turned out he used a variety of female models. In particular, he told me how he used a number of female models carrying a guy on a stretcher a number of time in order to capture the visual used for the artwork on the GI JOE Vietnam Nurse figure.

On the flip side, around the time the Vietnam Nurse figure came out, the focus on artwork presentation on the box packaging was beginning to change to a marketing perspective in terms of product packaging, size, and display visual, where the artwork was no longer a concern. This was primarily due to retailers requesting greater display and packaging efficiency.”


The Beginning of the End— According to Selman, Hasbro’s desire for GIjOE paintings was “beginning to change” around the time he completed this masterful depiction of US Army nurses in Vietnam. As a result, many of the pieces he created for the toy company were (sadly) never used. (Art: Larry Selman)

“I asked Mr. Selman if doing artwork for toys like GI JOE and others from that period is now a ‘lost art;’ because nowadays, the display box and packaging for most toys found at large mass retailers are usually devoid of any real and true artwork and simply a clear packaging that shows the toys with very basic and minimal visual graphics and not any true artwork. He agreed, because back then, the artwork used on the GI JOE Classic Collection figures was also a visual, attention-generating selling point of the figure as well.

Mr. Selman attended past JOELANTA conventions where he is a featured guest. He autographs the GI JOE Classic Collection boxed figures featuring his art. In addition, his table features a variety of prints featuring his artwork, of which he’ll also autograph. I found him to be very approachable and his experiences and insight with Hasbro were very enlightening.” —Chung Kim

Bottom Line: Our sincerest thanks to Chung Kim for his excellent reportage today, and to Larry Selman (once again) for all of the superb artwork he’s created utilizing military and western subject matter and themes. If you’re a Selman fan (and who isn’t?) HERE again is Larry’s official website.

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G.I. Joe Classic Collection Artist, Larry Selman, Unveils “Washington’s Review,” in Ceremony at National Constitution Center, Philadelphia, PA

Brig. Gen. Tony J. Carrelli, Pennsylvania National Guard deputy adjutant general – Air (left), Maj. Gen. Wesley E. Craig, Pa. National Guard adjutant general (right) and artist Larry Selman pose in front of Selman’s painting, "Washington’s Review," Dec. 6, 2014, at the National Constitution Center, Philadelphia, Pa. The painting was commissioned on behalf of the Pa. National Guard and unveiled during its 267th birthday celebration. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Master Sgt. Christopher Botzum/Released)

Atten—HUT! In a formal ceremony held December 6th, 2014 at the National Constitution Center in Philadelphia, PA, renowned artist and illustrator, Larry Selman (center), presents his latest work entitled, “Washington’s Review,” to Brig. Gen. Tony J. Carrelli (left) and Maj. Gen. Wesley E. Craig (right). Congratulations, Larry! (Photo: Master Sgt. Christopher Botzum/Released) Click to enlarge.

Larry Selman's masterpiece, "Washington's Review," measures in at a whopping 60" x 30" and carries on the tradition of fine military art he honed while working as an illustrator for '90s GIjOE "Classic Collection" boxes for Hasbro. Out-STANDING! (Photo: Larry Selman)

“Washington’s Review,” measures in at a whopping 60″ x 30″ and carries on the tradition of fine military artwork Selman first honed to perfection while working as an illustrator on various GIjOE “Classic Collection” packages for Hasbro Toys. Out-STANDING! (Photo: Larry Selman) Click to enlarge.

Larry Selman, renowned GIjOE packaging illustrator and artist of military history. (Photo: Larry Selman)

Larry Selman (Photo: Larry Selman)

Artist’s Latest Masterpiece to be Displayed Permanently at Pennsylvania National Guard Joint Force Headquarters in Pennsylvania

GIjOE fandom’s favorite illustrator and artist, Larry Selman, made the news again recently when he unveiled his latest painting, a superb work he’d completed for the Pennsylvania National Guard. According to an official press release describing the event, as penned by Tech. Sgt. Andria J. Allmond (edited for length):


“A painting commissioned by the Pennsylvania National Guard, and slated for display at the Pa. National Guard’s Joint Force Headquarters at Fort Indiantown Gap, Pa., entitled “Washington’s Review” by artist Larry Selman of Waynesboro, Pa., was unveiled at the National Constitution Center here Dec. 6.

The 60 by 30-inch image depicts Gen. George Washington assessing the 1st City Troop of Philadelphia June, 1775. The painting illustrates Washington returning the salute from the artillery officer while the enlisted men are at present arms as the officers pass by in review.”

The more you study Selman's work, the more you see. There are actually stories within the story being depicted and historic details that astound the viewer. Amazing! (Photo: Larry Selman)

Unbelievable! The closer you study Selman’s work, the more details you’ll discover. (Photo: Larry Selman)

Selman said he painstakingly conducts research before applying paint to his canvas, in order to provide not only a beautiful piece of artwork, but also an accurate account of history. One of America’s foremost historic artists, his body of work is comprised of capturing military scenes from the Revolutionary War to current military engagements.

Selman continued by stating that each painting is comprised of mini portraits, with research done on everything from the style of clothes worn and weaponry used, to how people would be positioned, to the correct landscape of the time and place. He explained that after conducting research, he obtains the correct clothing, equipment and people to serve as models in order to construct the original picture. Even body language and the emotional affect of individuals during the time the painting is portrayed are considered.”


“When a picture is completed, if it’s wrong you have to defend it, it will always be wrong. But if it’s right, you’ll never have to defend it.” —Larry Selman

Selman's depiction of George Washington will ring a bell with fans and collectors of GIjOE action figures who remember a previous Selman painting of America's first President graced the packaging of an outstanding George Washington "Classic Collection" figure. (Photo: Timewarptoys)

Selman’s latest depiction of George Washington will ring a bell with GIjOE fans and collectors. Its layout and poses are similar to a painting the artist had previously created for the packaging of Hasbro’s George Washington “Classic Collection” GIjOE action figure. (Photo: Timewarptoys)

Bottom Line: Over the span of his illustrious 31-year career, Selman continues to “wow” and amaze his legions of fans with ever-more astounding works of artistic, technical and historic accuracy. Larry’s latest masterpiece, “Washinton’s Review” takes a well-deserved place among those works as one of his best and most memorable. Proceeds from the sales of prints of this painting will go to benefit soldiers and airmen in need (complete information HERE). Our sincerest thanks go out to Mr. Selman for all he’s done for the world’s GIjOE collecting community and for honoring members of the U.S. military. Visit Larry on Facebook HERE or at his website HERE.

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