Classic Comics Illustrators: Frank Frazetta, Russ Heath, Burne Hogarth, Russ Manning, Mark Schultz

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Tom Spurgeon
Fantagraphics Books, 2005 - Comics & Graphic Novels - 147 pages
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Frank Frazetta, Burne Hogarth, Russ Manning, Russ Heath and Mark Schultz are the modern masters of illustration, here collected in their own words under one gorgeous, wrap-around cover. Together, these artists bridge almost 70 years of comics and fantasy art tied to tradition, craft, and an emphasis on the human form.

Frank Frazetta is unquestionably the preeminent fantasy and science fiction painter and illustrator of the second half of the 20th century. He began his career in comics, and from there he revolutionized the paperback cover aesthetic with his paintings that graced the novels of Edgar Rice Burroughs, Robert E. Howard, and other sword & sorcery and fantasy authors. In his longest and last great discussion recorded for posterity, the painter and cultural touchstone throws down the gauntlet to interviewer Gary Groth and a generation of adventure painter wannabes.

Burne Hogarth is well known as the visionary illustrator of the Sunday Tarzan series from 1939 to 1950, and the innovative educator who founded New York's school of Visual Arts in 1947. His educational booksDynamic Anatomy, Dynamic Light & Shade, etc.have become staples of colleges and universities all over the world. Hogarth gives one of the most charged interviews by any artist in any art form over the last 30 years, passionately and decisively explicating the value of great art and the moral foundations upon which all great art rests.

The Classic Comics Illustrators is also proud to present extensive interviews with three other artists who continued the tradition of men like Hogarth and Frazetta:

Russ Heath was born in New York in 1926, and his best work was on Westerns, especially Arizona Kid and Kid Colt, Outlaw, which stood out for their realistic artwork and details. Other genres Russ Heath drew were love stories, science-fiction and adventure, such as MAD and Frontline Combat for EC Comics. In 1950, he joined National, where he worked on the full range of comic book features, among which were Silent Knight, Sgt. Rock, Sea Devils and Golden Gladiator.

Russ Manning, meanwhile, created the fondly-remembered science fiction comic series Magnus, Robot Fighter, a superhero series that stood out because of Manning's excellent artwork. It was published by Gold Key Comics and started in 1963, and Manning drew it until 1968; Dark Horse Comics is currently reprinting the series.

Last but not least, Mark Schultz (Cadillacs and Dinosaurs) is a man caught at the apex of his work's influence within the field and provides an altogether different perspective on great art's role in great comics, discussing his forays into Hollywood and more.

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Classic Comics Illustrators: The Comics Journal Library (Burne Hogarth, Frank Frazetta, Mark Schultz, Russ Heath and Russ Manning)

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TheComics Journal has been publishing comics criticism and journalism for adult readers since 1976. This fifth volume in an oversized (12"x12") series of collections drawn from the magazine reprints ... Read full review


Burne Hogarth
Russ Manning
Mark Schultz 31

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About the author (2005)

TomSpurgeon is the co-creator of theaward-winning The Comics Reporter, whichpublishes journalism, criticism, and history, and the co-writer of a Stan Leebiography. He edited The Comics Journal forfive years. He currently lives in Ohio, where he is organizing the CartoonCrossroads Columbus convention.

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