Eli Katz wrote:Put another way, do you think the average comic book artists today (however you define and determine average) is better today than in previous decades?
Eli Katz wrote: Or do you think that an older generation of artists was able to put out higher quality art?
I know they could given the fact that from everything I've read, they were actually trained and educated for being illustrators and more.
Many chose to use a simpler easier style to grind out the work and survive.
Eli Katz wrote: Or do you think that the art has remained relatively stable in quality over the years?
I think it has been de-stabilized with the numerous of "self-taught" types whom were later and repeatedly in one form or another, duplicated. However, this is also what art is about, so this is not a bad thing. Quality here is as always with art, a subjective thing... an opinion.
Eli Katz wrote:
I'm not sure I have an answer for these questions. But I started thinking about the quality of art after seeing this cover:
This is a 1938 cover, and it knocks me out. I don't know who Leo E. O’Mealia was, but, man oh man, that guy could put together a beautiful, startling image. His work definitely holds up. And I imagine that there are many forgotten artists out there who put out exceptional work over the years.
Many artists that worked through the 30s to the 70s and even into the early 80s were very capable of doing great illustrations or paintings. But many also worked during a time while the pay was low and quantity and being fast is what made the living. Fans turned pro who started showing up at the end of the 60s and could do illustrative styles caused the shift as they appeared to be new and better. Berni Wrightson compared to Mike Sekowsky. Wrightson could produce a comic maybe every other month. Sekowsky produced a comic over a weekend. Illustrative style versus cartoonist style always is comparing extremes.
There are TONS of covers from then and the 40s plus 50s that are gorgeous to see. Mind you, the 60s and 70s had masters of the cover like Nick Cardy.
Today, many artists look more at producing a piece of art to sell down the road over the telling of a story. There's a very fuzzy line that is easy for them to fall over.. trip.. with moving from the one to the other. As with the modern generations, the desire to experiment is far stronger and far more allowed then it was back then.