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In General, Has Comics Art Improved over the Years?

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S.F. Jude Terror

OMCTO

Postby S.F. Jude Terror » Tue Apr 22, 2014 2:56 am

I'm surprised to see so many people think art looks better today. I think great art looks better because of better printing techniques, but more often art is made uglier by the photoshop rendering.
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Lord Simian

The Lord of the Monkeys

Postby Lord Simian » Tue Apr 22, 2014 9:32 am

Overall, art today is obviously more beautifully colored, but I dont think it LOOKS as good...
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Arion

Twenty-Something

Postby Arion » Tue Apr 22, 2014 2:13 pm

S.F. Jude Terror wrote:I'm surprised to see so many people think art looks better today. I think great art looks better because of better printing techniques, but more often art is made uglier by the photoshop rendering.


Yeah, that's what I sad that with today's technology I don't expect art to be just as good as it was decades. I expect it to be better, and although I hate generalizations most of the times the art I see in recent comic books is very bad.

The Old Doctor

Postby The Old Doctor » Tue Apr 22, 2014 5:45 pm

I'll say it again. You really cannot compare based on the difference in the tools available. Comparing the over all end product is unfair.

But comparing the basic part - the pencil work - you can begin to judge.

adamiani

Helter Skelter

Postby adamiani » Tue Apr 22, 2014 6:27 pm

UnionJack wrote:Modern comic art, I think, is now over-produced with tools such as photoshop and the advanced colouring techniques and 'special effects' it brings with it.

What modern/newer artists seem to lack is the story-telling ability that older artists had/have. Too much of modern comic art is like looking at a still, which of course is exactly what a comic panel is. The key to good comic art is to read it without realising you're looking at stills - comics should flow like a movie almost. At least that's what I feel when I'm reading them.

Modern comics have become more splash-page oriented partly because of lack of story-telling ability and partly to get the most out of photoshop and its effects. That's my take on things anyway.


While I strongly believe comic art-- at least the interiors-- has gotten radically, noticeably, almost undeniably better over the decades, and thank Photoshop for a large part of it-- I think you may actually have a point vis a vis stills.

When a significant fraction of an artist's income is selling the out-of-context original page art, we should rather expect them to be generated with an eye towards that presentation.
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Arion

Twenty-Something

Postby Arion » Tue Apr 22, 2014 11:01 pm

achilles wrote:An interesting aside is that the art the old guys used to put out in comics often looked radically simpler than the stuff they did elsewhere. For example, Wally Wood had a simple style in comics, but when I look at a cover he did for a novella my dad wrote back in the day, (way before I was born), it was complex, detailed, and in fact looked closer to something you might see on a fine painted cover in today's comics.

So those guys were versatile and adjusted according to the medium and how much time they had. Plus, I think they showed more raw creativity than most of today's crop. The art may or may not have been cruder back in the day, but there was a vibrancy missing from much of today's stuff.


Your father was a writer? That's amazing!
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achilles

Fagorstorm

Postby achilles » Wed Apr 23, 2014 9:53 am

Arion wrote:
Your father was a writer? That's amazing!


Thanks. He had a brief career where he wrote short stories and novellas for mags like the now defunct Galaxy, Analog, and Ellery Queen Mystery. Translated into a bunch of languages and collected in their anthologies. Wood did a cover for one of his novellas. Which was a thing Wood was doing back then as a side-line. It was such a shame about Wood. Though I know how he must have felt, I feel that way regularly.

Draymond

Whippersnapper

Postby Draymond » Wed Apr 23, 2014 2:20 pm

It just depends on the artists there are some artists who have really revolutionized some styles recently and there are still some artists from way back who were way ahead of their time, with styles I dont see many artists nowadays matching.
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Arion

Twenty-Something

Postby Arion » Wed Apr 23, 2014 6:23 pm

achilles wrote:
Thanks. He had a brief career where he wrote short stories and novellas for mags like the now defunct Galaxy, Analog, and Ellery Queen Mystery. Translated into a bunch of languages and collected in their anthologies. Wood did a cover for one of his novellas. Which was a thing Wood was doing back then as a side-line. It was such a shame about Wood. Though I know how he must have felt, I feel that way regularly.


I would have given my right arm to have 1) a published novella and 2) a Wally Wood cover on it.

If you don't mind me asking, what was your father's name? There is pretty big sci-fi collection here in my house (roughly 3,000 - 3,500 sci-fi books and magazines) so I might be able to find something written by him.
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guitarsmashley

Regular-Sized Poster

Postby guitarsmashley » Wed Apr 23, 2014 7:06 pm

many books have also left the house style in the past so its difficult to compare.
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The Beast

Swedish Pinata of Death

Postby The Beast » Wed Apr 23, 2014 7:59 pm

habitual wrote:
Fantastic Four #588, right after the "death" of Johnny Storm, no dialogue all art and entirely moving.

Hab


That's cool, I'm sure there are exceptions out there but I was talking about the sort of thing UnionJack mentioned here:

UnionJack wrote:There are some great artists about today but generally I prefer artists from yesteryear or those veterans who are still working in comics such as Alan Davis and George Perez.

Modern comic art, I think, is now over-produced with tools such as photoshop and the advanced colouring techniques and 'special effects' it brings with it.

What modern/newer artists seem to lack is the story-telling ability that older artists had/have. Too much of modern comic art is like looking at a still, which of course is exactly what a comic panel is. The key to good comic art is to read it without realising you're looking at stills - comics should flow like a movie almost. At least that's what I feel when I'm reading them.

Modern comics have become more splash-page oriented partly because of lack of story-telling ability and partly to get the most out of photoshop and its effects. That's my take on things anyway.

Give me Kirby, The Buscema Brothers, Gil Kane and Steve Rude any day.
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Amoebas

Son of Stein

Postby Amoebas » Wed Apr 23, 2014 8:46 pm

habitual wrote:
Fantastic Four #588, right after the "death" of Johnny Storm, no dialogue all art and entirely moving.

My favorite 'no dialogue' story ever...
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The first panel of the last page is just one the most perfectly constructed panels of all time.
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Arion

Twenty-Something

Postby Arion » Thu Apr 24, 2014 5:41 pm

Amoebas wrote:My favorite 'no dialogue' story ever...
Image
Image
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The first panel of the last page is just one the most perfectly constructed panels of all time.


Byrne and Kubert. I read this a few years ago. Byrne has a few other silent stories.He excels at it.
If you like silent stories, there were two Italians Berardi & Milazzo who could tell a very dramatic and intense story in 8 pages without using a single word balloon.
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thefourthman

Outhouse Editor

Postby thefourthman » Fri Apr 25, 2014 6:39 am

No. I would say the quality of the print and inking we get is increased, don't really care much for the glossy pages, but whatever. I would say, just like in the past, there are great artist, great stylists and crappy artists. Probably about even in all accounts. Too lazy to go into more detail.
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Eli Katz

OMCTO

Postby Eli Katz » Sat Apr 26, 2014 5:35 pm

The worst that can be said of older art: it was often boring.

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And some of it was anatomically bad:

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But today's stuff is often ridiculously over the top:

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If I had to pick, I'd say that the early '70s--especially the Marvel books--was an amazing period of comics art. Here's what was being done in 1972, for example:

Gil Kane and John Romita on ASM
Ross Andru on Marvel Team-Up
Sal Buscema on Captain America and Defenders
John Buscema on Fantastic Four and Thor
Neal Adams on Avengers
Gene Colan on Sub-Mariner, DD, and Tomb of Dracula
George Tuska on Iron Man and Luke Cage
Dick Ayers on Sgt. Fury
Gil Kane on Warlock, Kazar, and Marvel Team-Up

Just an amazing list.

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