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In General, Has Comics Art Improved over the Years?

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Arion

Twenty-Something

Postby Arion » Sat Apr 26, 2014 9:53 pm

Eli Katz wrote: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:

Image


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.


Don't forget Barry Windsor-Smith on Conan the Barbarian. Best art ever !
User avatar

Amoebas

Son of Stein

Postby Amoebas » Sat Apr 26, 2014 10:35 pm

Arion wrote:
Don't forget Barry Windsor-Smith on Conan the Barbarian. Best art ever !

Also from '72...
Bernie Wrightson on Swamp Thing
Joe Kubert's Tarzan
Tony DeZuniga's Jonah Hex
Jose Gonzalez on Vampirella
Esteban Maroto in Creepy & Eerie
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Eli Katz

OMCTO

Postby Eli Katz » Sun Apr 27, 2014 9:45 am

And Curt Swan, who had been around forever at that point, was doing some of his best work on Superman in the early '70s.

Image

Anyway, I think the early 1970s represents the high point of comics art. Just a great roster of artists both at Marvel and DC, putting out solid work month after month.
User avatar

Amoebas

Son of Stein

Postby Amoebas » Sun Apr 27, 2014 10:21 am

Eli Katz wrote:And Curt Swan, who had been around forever at that point, was doing some of his best work on Superman in the early '70s.

Image

Anyway, I think the early 1970s represents the high point of comics art. Just a great roster of artists both at Marvel and DC, putting out solid work month after month.

In respect to the late 60's/early 70's. I think a mention should be given to both Archie Goodwin and Carmine Infantino for their roles in trying something different with their artist hiring practices.
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Chessack

Swedish Pinata of Death

Postby Chessack » Sun Apr 27, 2014 11:56 am

Eli Katz wrote:Anyway, I think the early 1970s represents the high point of comics art. Just a great roster of artists both at Marvel and DC, putting out solid work month after month.


I think the 70s overall, up to the early 80s, was basically the high-water mark for the industry overall, story, art, mass appeal, etc. We still had the classic versions of most of the heroes, and they were being produced by people with more talent in their pinkie fingers than most of the folks of today (especially the writers). Mantlo, Buscema, Moench, Trimpe, Swan, etc. These guys knew how to tell great comic-book stories. The comics were fun, had mass appeal, were interesting, and had just a touch more realism than they had in the Silver Age -- just enough, but not too much.

After the Crisis, little by little one title after another passed that tipping point, both in story and art, to become too "realistic," and this destroyed the sense of just good plain fun that comic-books once represented.
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Arion

Twenty-Something

Postby Arion » Mon Apr 28, 2014 12:24 am

Amoebas wrote:Also from '72...
Bernie Wrightson on Swamp Thing
Joe Kubert's Tarzan
Tony DeZuniga's Jonah Hex
Jose Gonzalez on Vampirella
Esteban Maroto in Creepy & Eerie


I love Esteban Maroto.
If we take a look at the European market in the 70s and 80s there were some truly fantastic artists: Manara, Serpieri, Altuna, Moebius, Druillet, etc., etc.
User avatar

UnionJack

Mad Hatter

Postby UnionJack » Mon Apr 28, 2014 6:17 am

Chessack wrote:
I think the 70s overall, up to the early 80s, was basically the high-water mark for the industry overall, story, art, mass appeal, etc. We still had the classic versions of most of the heroes, and they were being produced by people with more talent in their pinkie fingers than most of the folks of today (especially the writers). Mantlo, Buscema, Moench, Trimpe, Swan, etc. These guys knew how to tell great comic-book stories. The comics were fun, had mass appeal, were interesting, and had just a touch more realism than they had in the Silver Age -- just enough, but not too much.

After the Crisis, little by little one title after another passed that tipping point, both in story and art, to become too "realistic," and this destroyed the sense of just good plain fun that comic-books once represented.


Yes. Yes to all this. Absolutely nailed.

Katz posted a great list of masterful comics illustration. I'll add to that John Buscema & Alfredo Alcala's Savage Sword of Conan work. Everybody go and have a look at some. Now. Go on....
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LoganRSA

FROGMAN

Postby LoganRSA » Mon Apr 28, 2014 9:03 am

Eli Katz wrote:And Curt Swan, who had been around forever at that point, was doing some of his best work on Superman in the early '70s.

Image

Anyway, I think the early 1970s represents the high point of comics art. Just a great roster of artists both at Marvel and DC, putting out solid work month after month.


I used to have this one!

Sorry, carry on.
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Arion

Twenty-Something

Postby Arion » Mon Apr 28, 2014 7:15 pm

Mr. Log wrote:
I used to have this one!

Sorry, carry on.


Lovely cover.

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