Thursday, April 16, 2009

Artist Spotlight - Jim Steranko

This week the MMOB Artist Spotlight is focused squarely on a man who in a very short period of time had a tremendous impact on the world of comics: Jim Steranko

Here' a little background from

James Steranko (born 5 November, 1938, Reading, Pennsylvania, United States) is an American graphic artist, comic book writer-artist-historian, magician, publisher and film production illustrator. His most famous comic-book work was with the 1960s superspy feature "Nick Fury, Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D." in Marvel Comics' Strange Tales and in the subsequent eponymous series. Steranko earned lasting acclaim for his innovations in sequential art during the Silver Age of comic books, particularly his infusion of surrealism, op art, and graphic design into the medium. His work has been published in many countries and his influence on the field has remained strong since his comics heyday. He was inducted into the Comic Book Hall of Fame in 2006.

Steranko's art is strong, with robust use of blacks and whites, and it reflects influences from outside the comics world, including advertising, film noir and the work of Salvador Dali. He brought a thundering, lightning bolt approach to artistic styling during his stint as an artist and art director at Marvel Comics (1966-69 and 1972-73). His pages and covers are certainly influenced by his artistic precursors, most notably Jack Kirby and Will Eisner. Check out Tony Robertson's Steranko Bibliography for a full listing of Jim's comic book work.

Apparently, Mr. Steranko put everything he had into his work, and because he handled the writing, drawing, inking and coloring, he found it increasingly difficult to keep up the necessary speed to meet the production deadlines. He moved on to other creative endeavors, including advertising and as a paperback artist. He continued to reflect his passion for comics by creating The (Steranko) History of Comics (at least the first two volumes of a planned six volume series) and took a short stint as the editor of Marvel's official fan magazine, FOOM (Friends of Ol' Marvel).

More than anything, I like Jim's distinctive visual imagery and commitment to doing it right. Check out his work for yourself and see what you think!

A small GALLERY of Jim Steranko art pulled from the Internet
All art and copyrights are the property of their respective owners

Next Up - Frank Miller

- Jason

1 comment:

Tony said...

The Steranko bibliography has moved to