Monday, May 10, 2010

Frank Frazetta: 1928-2010

Word spread quickly today that one of the great illustrators of the 20th Century had passed away. I'm far from a Frazetta expert, but it's impossible for anyone not to be a fan. In the realm of fantasy illustration, his work raised the bar to a level that few could match. Without Frazetta's powerful covers, I doubt that characters such as Conan and Tarzan would have maintained their popularity through the years. He infused an incredible sense of power into each of his pieces. He turned Conan into such a powershouse, that only Schwarzenegger could portray him. Aside from his comic book and paperback illustrations, he also did some terrific movie poster, including this poster for The Gauntlet. I like it because he's able to make Eastwood and Locke look like an urban version of John Carter and Dejah Thoris.

He did some of the finest work the comic book industry had ever seen. His Shining Knight, Buck Rogers and Thun'da work remain highly desirable to this day. He also played a large role in making the Warren magazines such a success. I'm not sure what we would have seen the great work by the likes of Boris Vallejo and Ken Kelly had Frazetta not been such an inspiration. I know that there has been some controversy within the Frazetta family over the last little while, but none of that should take away from the treasure trove of fanstic artwork produced by Frank. R.I.P. and thanks for everything!

1 comment:

Ray R. said...

I updated my blog to note Frazetta's passing as well. I included the link of an interview Frank did with Gary Groth at The Comics Journal in 1994. It's a pretty good capture of the rugged individualist that Frazetta exemplified. You might want to check it out.