Doug: Last Monday's introductory post on the Frank Miller/David Mazzuchelli classic "Batman: Year One" brought about some discussion on line art and coloring, and to be honest it got a wee bit contentious. We've had these sorts of art/artist discussions in the past during various post-commenting, but what the heck -- let's have it again! Maybe some of you have updated thoughts, or just want the opportunity to put all of your opinions regarding comic book art down in one place. Certainly we hope to have some newcomers participate in the conversation. Overall, you know this may branch off in some tangential direction, and isn't that the beauty of a bunch of pals sitting around talking four-color shop?
Doug: There's no doubt that once the cover of your favorite mag is peeled back you're going to be faced with what some of us consider a better-than-50% element of the story, and that's the pictures. As I've remarked many times, the art is slightly more important to me than the writing. I've said that I can still look at and admire the pretty pictures, even if I don't want to read the story again. A great case would be the first issue of Neal Adams' recent effort Batman: Odyssey. After reading the premiere, I didn't care if I saw issue #2 or not -- Adams' writing was off-putting to me, and I did not at all care for the graphic violence. But there are panels and pages in that book that are wonderful!
Doug: Many of you sing the praises of Gil Kane; you also like John Buscema and Jack Kirby. These masters' work, laid side-by-side, couldn't be more different. Yes, there are similarities in terms of cinematic storytelling, but the detail of the figurework is what separates them. All quality, but all recognizable in their uniqueness. But there are others of you who dig Kane yet don't like Ross Andru. For me, there are definite similarities!
Doug: So today we want you to lay it all out -- what do you like and not like? How important is coloring? Who can surpass any inker's line, and who needs some help? Do certain artists excel at creating moodiness, or do others suffer in that regard? Why is Sal Buscema "steady" and many of us denigrate Al Milgrom? Today is "put your money where your mouth is" day on the BAB.
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