Featured here is a breathtaking photograph of Apollo 11 lifting off from the Kennedy Space Center on July 16, 1969. This past week marked the 50th anniversary of one of America’s crowning achievements and fulfilling President John F. Kennedy’s wish to land a man on the moon by the end of that decade. I was fortunate to see the Space Shuttle launch at night back in 1989, but it must have been something else to see a Saturn V rocket launch from Cape Canaveral. The Saturn V was the most powerful machine that mankind has ever built piercing the sky at 6,000 mph and 8 million pounds of thrust. You can see the Saturn V breaking the sound barrier and going supersonic in this photograph. ‘First Man’ is an excellent portrayal of the launch, but nothing can compare to the real thing.


Pittsburgh and many of its major companies and talented citizens during the late 60’s played a historical and pivotal role in the Apollo 11 moon landing. The command module Columbia which ferried the astronauts from the Earth to the lunar orbit had been developed and built by North American Rockwell, a Pittsburgh-based aerospace firm. The lunar module Eagle had touched down on shock-absorbing legs built by Alcoa which also designed the aluminum hatch door. Clark McClelland, a retired astronaut from Pittsburgh designed and built launch towers for NASA at the Kennedy Space Center in Florida. McClelland is also known for designing the famous Apollo 11 patch the astronauts wore on their spacesuits. The Apollo 11 emblem features an American bald eagle circling the Moon and the Sea of Tranquility where the Apollo 11 astronauts landed with the Earth shown in the background. Commander Neil Armstrong planted the American flag using a special pole designed by Pittsburgher, Jack Kinzler who was a NASA engineer and is credited with the lunar flag assembly. Bruce Hapke who was a University of Pittsburgh professor of geology and planetary science worked at the Allegheny Observatory and Buhl Science Center. His knowledge of the surface of the moon, which NASA was unaware of at the time led to the design of astronaut boots, landing pads and the moon rovers which would roll on its surface. Westinghouse Electric Co. cameras broadcast the moment to 600 million people around the world.


First Man Apollo 11 Launch Scene

Flight 93 National Memorial fine art painting by Pittsburgh artist, Charles Ott.

Featured here is a painting I created of the Flight 93 National Memorial. The Flight 93 National Memorial is located near Shanksville, Pennsylvania at the crash site of United Airlines Flight 93 which was hijacked in the September 11th attacks. The memorial was created to honor the passengers and crew of Flight 93 who heroically thwarted the terrorists in reaching their intended target which was likely the U.S. Capitol.

Steel City Artist Illustrations

Fred Rogers fine art painting by Pittsburgh artist, Charles Ott.

Featured here is a colorful painting I created as an everlasting tribute to Fred Rogers and one of Pittsburgh’s enduring treasures. Mr. Rogers as many know created Mr. Rogers’ Neighborhood right here in my hometown of Pittsburgh which was launched from the WQED studios fifty years ago. The U.S. Postal Service released a forever stamp earlier this year honoring the television icon who would have turned ninety years-old. His legacy and the lessons he left us will continue to capture the hearts and imaginations of children in Pittsburgh and around the world for generations to come.

Legendary Hollywood actor and filmmaker, Tom Hanks will begin shooting his upcoming feature film as Fred Rogers in Pittsburgh this Fall which is called “You Are My Friend”. The film will be released by Sony Pictures on October 18, 2019.

It was ten years ago that I launched Steel City Artist Illustrations which features many of my Pittsburgh-themed pen & ink illustrations and fine art paintings. I have been been very blessed with the artistic abilities given to me and humbled by the thousands of people who have brought my fine art into their homes and businesses over the past decade. I have met so many great people and have been fortunate to be involved with many memorable events through my artwork. I look forward to the next ten years and beyond and to continuing to share the history and wonder of our beautiful city with fellow Pittsburghers and the world.

Steel City Artist Illustrations – Pittsburgh Art

Roberto Clemente fine art painting by Pittsburgh artist, Charles Ott.

Featured here is my popular painting of the “Great One”, Roberto Clemente as we honor and remember him on his birthday today. His legacy and the lives that he touched will live on forever in Pittsburgh and around the world.

Roberto Clemente was a Puerto-Rican MLB right fielder who played his entire eighteen season career with the Pittsburgh Pirates from 1955-72. Clemente is regarded as one of the greatest baseball players of all-time and he had an illustrious career. He won two World Series championships with the Pirates in 1960 and 1971 and was awarded the World Series MVP in ’71. Clemente was on the NL All-Star team 15x, received 12 Gold Glove Awards, awarded NL MVP in 1966 and became a member of the 3,000th hit club in his last game. Clemente was elected to the Baseball Hall of Fame posthumously in 1973 becoming the first Latin American selected and the only Hall of Fame member whose mandatory five-year waiting period has been waived. In 1973, his #21 was honorably retired by the Pittsburgh Pirates and he was awarded the Congressional Gold Medal and the Presidential Citizens Medal. To this day, he is loved and admired by many in Latin America and Pittsburgh for who he was as a baseball player and as a humanitarian.

Click the link below to the Sports Art section of my fine art website to purchase this signed and numbered limited edition painting of Roberto Clemente.

Steel City Artist Illustrations – Sports Art

Isaly's fine art painting by Pittsburgh artist, Charles Ott.

Featured here is a new painting I created over the summer of another favorite storied landmark of Pittsburgh. For many generations of Pittsburghers few places evoked many wonderful and unforgettable memories quite like Isaly’s.

The people of Pittsburgh held Isaly’s in high regard and every neighborhood seemed to have one. The chain of family-owned dairies and restaurants started in Mansfield, Ohio and would eventually stretch from Pennsylvania to Iowa. Isaly’s was and still is known for its iconic BBQ chipped chopped ham which is sliced razor thin and is a favorite lunchtime meal. They were also known for creating the famous Klondike Bar ice cream treat and their towering Skyscraper Cones which were loved by children of all ages. The company employed a fun friendly atmosphere with its nostalgic high styled art deco interiors complete with comfortable sit-down booths, classic checkered green and white ceramic flooring and silver polished stools. For many of us who grew up in Pittsburgh, Isaly’s transported us to simpler and treasured times.

Click the link below to the Pittsburgh Art section of my fine art website to purchase this print which has come to be loved by Pittsburghers.

Steel City Artist Illustrations – Pittsburgh Art

The Pittsburgh Penguins are on the quest for their fifth Stanley Cup championship and their third in nearly a decade. The Penguins could soon join both the Pirates and Steelers with five championships, thus cementing their legacy among the many great teams in the City of Champions. The Penguins are led by their all-star captain, Sidney Crosby who is having a phenomenal year and winning another Stanley Cup trophy would be the icing on the cake. The Penguins have seemed to find a way to win all season with contributions from all of their players and the talents of their two goalies. There is nothing better than Penguins playoff hockey and the energy it brings to the city and the fans. We have been fortunate to witness so many great memories and players.

Featured below are two illustrations I recently created with a Penguins theme which make great gifts for any Pens fans. The first illustration depicts Pittsburgh’s magnificent “Golden Triangle” skyline emblazoned in gold color with the team in the foreground. The second illustration commemorates the Penguins 50th anniversary with the Pittsburgh skyline as seen from the North Shore with the sister bridges on the Allegheny River.

Click the link below to the Sports Art section of my fine art website to purchase either of these two prints which make great gifts for Penguins fans.

Let’s Go Pens!

Steel City Artist Illustrations – Sports Art

City of Pittsburgh & Pittsburgh Penguins Mural

Pittsburgh Penguins fine art painting by Pittsburgh artist, Charles Ott.

City of Pittsburgh & Pittsburgh Penguins 50th Anniversary

Pittsburgh Penguins 50th anniversary fine art painting by Pittsburgh artist, Charles Ott.

Kevin Greene's NFL Hall of Fame induction fine art painting by Pittsburgh artist, Charles Ott.

Featured here is an illustration I created honoring Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker, Kevin Greene who along with former Steeler, Tony Dungy were inducted into the NFL Pro Football Hall of Fame last weekend. Kevin Greene is a former NFL linebacker who played for fifteen seasons. He is a 3x All-Pro and ranks third among all-time sack leaders. Greene spent three seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers and like the “Steel Curtain” a generation before, he helped form the fearsome “Blitzburgh” defense with Greg Lloyd, Carnell Lake, Chad Brown, Levon Kirkland and Rod Woodson. During his short time with the team, the Steelers played in two AFC Championship games and returned to the Super Bowl for the first time in sixteen years. Greene was voted to the NFL 1990’s All-Decade Team and was elected to the NFL Hall of Fame.

Click the link below to the Steelers Art section of my fine art website to purchase this print which makes a great gift for Steelers fans.

Steel City Artist Illustrations – Steelers Art