Tuesday, July 30, 2013

Mark Schultz's Carbon

I received my copy of Mark Schultz's new book Carbon in the mail today. This handsome 56 page book is described as "Volume 1" and says it is the first in a series to pickup where Schultz's Drawings of... series left off.

Carbon is a delightful start to this new series, and sets a high bar for future volumes. But then again, Schultz has always seemed to top himself. The book consists of drawings completed mostly over the last two years, with the majority of them being unpublished. It starts with an interesting short essay by the artist about recreating from just a few fossil bones the newly discovered dinosaur Xenoceratops foremostensis A series of drawings, along with Schultz's self-deprecating comments, show the process he went through with a paleontologist to achieve an accurate rendering of the saurian.

There's also four foldout pages. Almost all of the pieces displayed show at least one preliminary and the finished piece, giving a peek into into the artist's process. There's some Xenozoic pieces in there you may recognize and some drawings from Schultz's upcoming illustrated novella Storms at Sea. The other drawings are fully rendered depictions of Burroughs-esque princesses and heroes, plus other heroines, tough guys, jungle girls and otherworldly creatures.

I'm not sure what some of the drawings are for, if they are intended for publication as book covers someday, or illustrations from the Storms at Sea project, which I don't know much about. The only possible negative criticism I could offer about this book has to do with that, a little bit of context and explanation about the art would have been nice, but hey, less text means more room for pictures, right?

I last was paying attention to Schultz during the waning days of Xenozoic Tales. At that point, he really had the Alex Raymond thing going on, and it was a blast. And always with the other wonderful EC and classic illustrator influences shining through. I always enjoyed Schultz's work, it was fun seeing the different influences being distilled and made new again. Looking at his art almost 20 years later, I can really see a unique and individual style that is only Mark Schultz. There's a much more solid and surer line, while at the same time remaining loose,and the compositions are exacting. Looking at Schultz's current output, it's obvious the work is informed by classic illustrators and artists like Williamson, Wood, and Krenkel, but the influences aren't worn as much on the artist's sleeve as his earlier work. I hope I'm getting across how much I loved his 1980's and 1990's work, but it's just a wonderful breath of fresh air to see Schultz continuing to grow and become more individual without straying to far from his roots.

The softcover edition of Carbon is available from Flesk Publications. I got the limited hardcover (appears to be sold out) through their Kickstarter campaign and also received a nice signed print. Here's an interview by John Flesk with Mark Schultz about this book and Mark's recent work.

This is the biggest batch of new Mark Schultz art dumped in my lap in years, and I'm thrilled. If you're a fan of Schultz already and don't have this book, hopefully you're returning to this page after you clicked the link to buy it. If you don't know about Mark Schultz, you're in for a treat. Any fan of pulp heroes, dinosaurs, science-fiction and fantasy art will find something in this book to love. All thumbs up, four stars, and highly recommended!

Marvel Superhero Stickers, 1975

Monday, July 29, 2013

Bat Grenade!

Batman Bat Grenade toy, 1966.

Saturday, July 27, 2013

Harry Ekman, February 1962.

"I Don't Go Far in Any Direction", by Harry Ekman.

Thursday, July 25, 2013


Moonpool by Bernie Wrightson. Created in 1978, this painting was intended for Bernie's series of prints he did for Christopher Enterprises. It wasn't used for that series, it was later published as a back cover for the September 1982 issue of Heavy Metal magazine.

Comic Book Movie Serials

Atom Man vs. Superman, 1950.

Captain America, 1944.

New Adventures of Batman and Robin, 1949.

Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Sharon Tate

Sharon Tate, from The Fearless Vampire Killers, 1967.

Tuesday, July 23, 2013


Selections from Bill Sienkiewicz's Vampire portfolios from Blackthorne, 1985.

Monday, July 22, 2013

Girl vs. Ape

Here's an Alex Schomburg of a girl in leopard-skin bikini chasing a giant gorilla.

Thrilling Comics #65, April 1948.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Quatre Bras

I love stuff like this.

The 28th Regiment at Quatre Bras by Elizabeth Thompson (Lady Butler), 1875.

Frank R. Paul Pulp Illustrations

Off to Space, 1953.

On the Attack, nd.

The Biological Revolt, 1953.

The Experiment, nd.

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Ghost Rider

Oh look, a maze made out of Ghost Rider's flaming head.

Harry Fisk's First World War

A couple of World War I paintings by Harry Fisk.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Tales of the Incredible

Tales of the Incredible, cover by Frank Frazetta, 1965.

Frank Kelly Freas: Ace Doubles

Some covers for Ace Doubles by Frank Kelly Freas.

Destination Saturn, 1967.

The Space Barbarians, 1969.

Winds of Earth, 1967.

Friday, July 12, 2013

Vampirella #5

The original painting by Frank Frazetta and the published cover for Vampirella #5.


Murphy Anderson's classic covers for the first five issues of Hawkman.

Hawkman #1, May 1964.

Hawkman #2, July 1964.

Hawkman #3, September 1964.

Hawkman #4, November 1964.

Hawkman #5, January 1965.

Thursday, July 11, 2013

Roots of the Swamp Thing

Roots of the Swamp Thing #1, by Bernie Wrightson, 1985.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Daring Mystery Comics

Golden Age mayhem from Timely Comics.

Daring Mystery Comics #2, February 1940. Cover by Alex Schomburg.

Daring Mystery Comics #3, April 1940. Cover by Alex Schomburg.

Daring Mystery Comics #7, April 1940.

Monday, July 8, 2013

Great Gift Books of Fantasy Art

Ad from Heavy Metal magazine, 1977.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Punch Comics

Some random golden age weirdness from the Harry Chesler shop.

Punch Comics #18, July 1946.

Punch Comics #19, October 1946.

Punch Comics #20, July 1947.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Bare Essentials

by Gil Elvgren, 1957.