A Classic Comic Illustrator...
I learnt on Monday afternoon that the world of American Comic Books lost another great artisan yesterday, with the passing of the legendary EC artist, Al Williamson.
I was never lucky enough to meet the man, himself, but know that my great friend and fellow comic writer and artist, John Ridgway had and spoke very highly of the man.
He leaves behind a wealth of great artwork and I can only hope that someone publishes all of his work as a series of books showcasing this incredibly delineated artwork. For me he was the ultimate in black and white draughtsmanship. His lush backgrounds have been an enormous influence on my own work, when producing jungle scenes, alien landscapes and incredible lost cities and for that I will be ever grateful for the opportunity to see his artwork in print over many years.
Like I said only a few weeks back, when discussing the sad passing of Frank Frazetta, his work makes him immortal and Al’s work is up there with Frank’s and Roy Krenkel’s. It was their drawing from the school of thought of the great illustrators of the late nineteenth and early twentieth century that inspired their own work.
The page of artwork I have chosen to show is typical of the work he produced throughout his career, although in later life he is known for his inking of other people’s artwork. The page is taken from a story written by Archie Goodwin, entitled Relic and appeared in Marvel’s full colour, Epic Illustrated Magazine, cover dated, December 1984.
I have to admit I have always loved seeing his work in black and white, as I felt he was the consummate black and white comic artist of the illustrative kind, and a master craftsman. It was what first drew me to the work of John Ridgway back in the early eighties, when I first saw John's work and from then on placed his work in the same category.
God Speed, Mr Williamson, I wonder if Heaven is as neat a place as the world’s you imagined for us all here on Earth?
Until next time, have fun!
June 15th 2010
Leo Baxendale 1930 - 2017
13 hours ago