If it were not for comic books, I would not be a Graphic Designer today. I am a major comic geek. Comic books sparked my imagination and interest in making awesome graphic images growing up. For a majority of my childhood my dream was to become a comic book artist. When I went to college there was not a “comic book art” major, so I majored in graphic design because it seemed like the most relevant degree for my aspirations. Although becoming a full time comic book artist is no longer my dream, my style as an illustrative designer is largely influenced by the comic book genre. So, I though it would be fun to list my top 5 favorite comic book artists in no particular order.
- Greg Capullo – Greg Capullo is possibly the the best storyteller through his art in comics today. He as an amazing ability to capture particular moods (especially creepiness) and has the ability to draw pretty much anything really well. I became a big fan reading his current run on Batman and his art was so impressive (along with Scott Snyder’s writing) that it made me cross over to DC comics for the first time.
- Dale Keown. The Incredible Hulk was my favorite comic book character growing up and Dale Keown has in my opinion the quintessential hulk style. When it comes to depicting the muscle-bound hero with intricate detail and awesomeness, Dale Keown Has no rival.
- Travis Charest – Travis Charest started out as a Jim Lee clone drawing the 90’s comic book “Wildcats”. Almost everyone was a Jim Lee clone back then, but Charest’s raw talent became apparent when he soon began to draw Jim Lee’s style better than Jim Lee himself. His style has since evolved to be much more photorealistic, reminiscent of iconic movie poster artist Drew Struzan (“The” movie poster guy).
- Cary Nord – I was introduced to Cary Nord’s art with his run on Conan for Darkhorse comics. Cary has a loose and fluid style that made his story telling immensely dynamic. His pencil stroke is so beautiful that most of the time his pencil work is not inked over as is the custom.
- Jim Lee will always have to make my top 5 list because of his personal influence on me growing up. He was my favorite comic book artist and a large part of what made me want to be a comic book artist myself. Jim Lee is given a bit of a bad wrap today because he is the closest thing to a “popstar” artist and has perhaps gotten comfortable drawing the same images and poses repeatedly. However, his influence on the comic book industry as a whole cannot be denied as he has also influenced other people on this list.