Thursday, October 23, 2008

Autographed "Designing Disney" Book by John Hench with Peggy Van Pelt

This is the book, "Designing Disney" by Walt Disney Imagineer John Hench, with Imagineer Peggy Van Pelt.

This features some very cool artwork, upon which the design of many Disney shows and attractions were based and built from. In the book, John talks about what Imagineering is, and what an Imagineer does. John worked at Disney as an animator in the beginning of his career at Disney. His artisitic ability and curiosity led him to become one of the premier Imagineers at WED Enterprises, which, years later, became known as Walt Disney Imagineering. John was also the master painter of Mickey Mouse for the Walt Disney Company, and since his death, he has not been replaced as such (although there will soon be a replacement for him).

Walt Disney Imagineering is the master concept, design, and building organization created by Walt Disney himself. It was originally created to design and build Disneyland. Since then, it has designed and built all of Disney's theme parks, resorts and hotels all over the world, including at Walt Disney World Resort in Florida, Disneyland Paris Resort, Hong Kong Disneyland Resort, and Tokyo Disneyland Resort. In all, it has built 11 theme parks and the Disney Cruise Line. Wow.

I got this book a few years ago at an NFFC Convention Show and Sale in Garden Grove, California. I got to the Convention a little late, and I saw the table where John was supposed to be, signing his book. I asked the lady sitting there, co-author Peggy Van Pelt, where John was, and she said that he had to leave. He had left her a few signed copies of his book, but she told me that she had run out of those, but she sold me a book and signed it book in front of me. I was a little disappointed, because I knew about John and I wanted to meet him and get his autograph in the book.

About a month or so after that Convention, I read it in the news that John had passed away. I was sad about this, not only for the loss of a legendary Imagineer, but because I had never got the opportunity to meet him or to have my book signed.

After hearing the news of his passing, I decided to pick up my book for the first time and really look at it. I stared at the beginning, and thumbed through the pages. Lo and behold, after turning a few pages, there was John's autograph, right in the book! I couldn't believe it! I don't know if Peggy knew that it was autographed or not when she gave it to me, but I tell you this, I believe in miracles! This book is so good and enjoyable to read and look at- I can spend an hour looking at it and reading it, and never get tired!

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