I'm a little surprised to not see Gene Colan make anyone's list yet, but while I might expect others to discuss his work on Tomb of Dracula or Night Force, he's made this spot on my list exclusively because of a single storyline he did -- the retelling of the Monk storyline in Batman #349, #350, Detective Comics #517, and Batman #351.
The visuals are so rife with kinetic energy, dramatic angles, and, even across two different inkers (Tony DeZuniga and Alredo Alcala), there's such an extreme contrast of light and dark to the point that eyes genuinely look like they are glowing.
It's pretty much the creepiest style I've ever seen in comics.
Last Edit: Oct 22, 2015 23:49:10 GMT -5 by shaxper
For me, successful horror art is more about setting a mood and a tone for the story than gore or horrific drawings, and my pick for Week 4/#2 on the list was a master of setting the mood with his art, particularly his horror art...
Colan was the long time artist on Marvel's Tomb of Dracula-a character he revisits here...
and here is an original art page from his ToD run...
his use of grey tones in his pencils to create shadow and light effects evokes the skills of master cinematographers form the film industry, but he also structures the stories as he draws them to keep build or ease the tension as the mood of the story demands.
His images can be layered with different levels for the eye to explore each sucking you in and horrifying you, as in this single page...
but it is his sense of pacing the visuals that is his greatest stregth, something he worked at in collaboration with his creative partners as this process page shows....
everything form the inks to the placement of lettering was taken into account to create the best narrative flow and mood/tone he could for the stories.
Even his long view establishing shots work to establish he horrific mood and tension fo the story as seen form this page form his Night Force work....
Another measuring stick for horror artists for me is how well they depict characters being scared not just what scares those characters, and as we see from this Night Force page-Colan was good at that as well...
For these and many more reasons, Colan comes in as the runner-up for me.
People don't want the Truth. They want only information that supports what they think they already know. -Vess from Invisible Kingdom
I see a comics culture that preserves and appreciates its past, but doesn't wallow in witless nostalgia. -Scott McCloud
Humans beings always do the most intelligent thing…after they’ve tried every stupid alternative and none of them have worked -Buckminster Fuller
Post by Arthur Gordon Scratch on Oct 23, 2015 5:20:31 GMT -5
My my... I never really cared for Colan - I somehow find it too "soft" - but he really is competant. Maybe that's it : he's too reliable, his set of skills was there from the get go and you didn't really get to see him grow that much, which is a big draw for me with comic book artists. But those pages you posted, I can see how it influenced many current artists such as Eric Powel or Cary Nord. Good stuff.
I'll now have to go with the most recognised horror comic book artist, even here :
#2 Berni Wrightson
He's been one of the main cause of my comic book fandom. When I discovered ebay back in 1999-2000, I was still a university student and got my first access to internet there. This is also where I discovered ebay and failed a year of study because of that and the student job I had to take to enforce the habit. Half of the money went into vinyl records and the rest into comics, mostly Wrightson, mind you, and some Jeff Jones, I even managed to get an original painting of a paperback pulp cover he did for a steal. People had no clue back then.
So here's some of his most striking horror images in my humble opinion, with first some mandatory favorite DC covers...
But he had an ongoing horror theme throughout his career which makes him my number 2 pick for this year's haloween :
How about that?
Lastly, as I picked Toth as well in my top 5, here's a detail from a HOM cover Wrightson did to illustrate a Toth story :
Admittedly, Wrightson could very well have taken the top spot (my most collected artist), as could Corben have (second most collected in this house), but I downgraded the former and eliminated the latter to showcase my number one pick who IMO deserves wider attention as a true master of horror within comic books, one with a style at the opposite end of the artistic spectrum, one less concerned with gothic imagery and more with modern urban horror. Stay tuned
The first Warren I picked up after being away from them for 3 or 4 years was Creepy #54, and the first story in that issue was The Slipped Mickey Click Flip, which Shaxper covered in his Doug Moench thread. Not only was the story unlike what I was used to, the art was very different than anything. It had a modeled, 3-D style that was totally different than most (all?) comics. Anyway, it made me an immediate Corben fan.
I started buying fanzines and undergrounds (no, I wasn't old enough) with his work. His stories ran the gamut from Sword and Sorcery to SF, to gothic, to contemporary, but all seemed to have a strong horrific streak. He had a couple of different drawing techniques, but my favorite was what he used in Rowlf and The Beast of Wolfton (Grim Wit #1): black and white penwork, sometimes with highlights scratched out of zip-a-tone.
Besides the art, he's a great storyteller, and it's easy to see his background as a filmmaker in his composition and pacing.
I just a grabbed some images off the web. Using spoiler tags for NSFW images (and there are plenty with Corben).
Post by Phil Maurice on Oct 23, 2015 17:01:11 GMT -5
#2 - Reed Crandall (Week 4)
Reed Crandall is well-known to fans for his work for Quality Comics, where he labored alongside giants such as Will Eisner, Jack Cole, and Lou Fine. In the 1950s, Crandall landed at EC Comics and began producing some of the finest horror material of the era, influenced by legendary commercial artists and painters like N.C.Wyeth, Howard Pyle, and James Montgomery Flagg.
Once again ensconced among other illustrators at the top of their field, Crandall's talent blossomed into genius. Boasting a grim, realistic style, he was perfectly suited to EC, beautifully rendering their adaptations of stories by Ray Bradbury, among them "The Silent Towns." (*Thanks to MDG for the correction. )
As well as offerings written by Gaines and Feldstein.
A personal favorite is "Carrion Death," from Shock SuspenStories#9.
I've been a fan of Tom Mandrake for many years. Best known for his legendary run on The Spectre with Tom Mandrake, his run showed that he's a modern day master of horror. Creepy, brutal and just plain ol' scary, Mandrake has given horror comics a nice spin. He also co-created a horror mini The Creeps which is a nice horror story (odd that I wrote that)...
NUMBER 2 - TOM MANDRAKE. I've been a fan of Tom Mandrake for many years. Best known for his legendary run on The Spectre , his run showed that he's a modern day master of horror. Creepy, brutal and just plain ol' scary. . .
Without a doubt, a great pick. That Spectre run is perhaps the best in the character's existence, thanks in no small part to Mandrake's masterful artwork.
"You may be as vicious about me as you please. You will only do me justice." - Richard Burton
Post by Icctrombone on Oct 24, 2015 7:34:15 GMT -5
2. Bernie Wrightson
When this Halloween thread started , I immediately thought of Wrightson as #1 but I had to change it. ( Next Week you'll find out why). His work on Swamp Thing brought true horror to DC comics and he stands as a true great in the medium.