With the fourteenth issue of ‘Illustrators’ out, we have a selection of six artists work to look at and take your breath away. This time, there’s even one I know and interviewed a couple years back.
The first is Tara McPherson. An artist with an unusual bent for painting ladies with holes in the heart, reflecting her own heartbreak from years ago which has become somewhat of a trademark of her material plus an oriental feel to them. In many respects, these have a surreal feel to them which tends to make them a little unsettling. From the interview with her, McPherson reveals she is always learning and adding to her art. She has also painted covers for DC Comics’ Vertigo line and Bill Willingham’s ‘Fables’ comics amongst others.
Artist Joe Jusko should need no introduction and there is a selection of his super-hero art for Marvel, ‘Tomb Raider’ and ERB’s Tarzan and John Carter of Mars. He says he does change his colour palate depending on what he works on. I’ve seen many of these before but the most startling was that of the Fantastic Four which really captures the motion. Interestingly, he includes a painting of Wonder Woman for his own amusement which does make me wonder why DC have never hired him for any paintings.
In contrast, Maurice Leloir’s work from the turn of the last century is a definite different take as its water-coloured pen and ink pieces. This doesn’t mean he can’t do oils and modern printing certainly brings out his work. His main claim to fame is illustrating Alexander Dumas’ ‘The Three Musketeers’ and it struck Douglas Fairbanks Jr. so much that Leloir was invited from France to Hollywood to design the 1929 film ‘The Iron Mask’, which he also illustrated the book, and ensuring the period was done correctly. Seeing his work, you really do have to admire Leloir’s style and patience where so much of the tonal lines would be done by commercial tone these days. He was also of the type when told that a panel needed to show an entire army, he did the lot. This doesn’t mean that ‘The Three Musketeers’ was all that Loloir was known for as he also contributed to a lot of magazines of the period. I’m just gobsmacked by his technique.
As a direct contrast to this, we have cartoonist Adam Stower who shows that the simplest lines can still express a picture or idea. His interview also reminds people who want to do art of any kind that they really must learn how to draw first and develop their own technique.
Finally, there is the pencil work of Mike Zagorski that demonstrates a surreal spookiness that displays its own emotions with a touch of foot fetishness.
With every issue of ‘Illustrators’, it reminds me that I really must do some more drawing and painting when I can fit it in. Being bathed in such talent is one way to do it and ‘Illustrators’ will certainly inspire you or if you just like to look at attractive art and gape, the you are well served here.
(pub: The Book Palace, 2016. 98 page illustrated squarebound magazine. Price: £18.00 (UK), $21.99 (US). ISBN: 978-1-907081-34-7. ISSN: 2052-6520
check out website: www.thebookpalace.com