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Wow, have I got an issue for you. I have five great illustrator interviews and /or editorials that will appear in the Spring Issue of The Illustrators Journal.
Joanne Lew Vriethoff is an illustrator who contacted me or I contacted her through Linkedin (I think) I saw her work and was dazzled. I learned she and I are both Art Center Alumni and I learned she’s an ex-patriot living in The Netherlands. (Love the Netherlands as they are big fans of the Journal).
I have a feature interview with Leslie Cober-Gentry whose father Alan Cober was a teacher of mine and one of the best illustrators of the last half century. However make no mistake Leslie is a fabulous talent on her own and her candid interview will give readers an insight into what it takes to be a top illustrator today. In addition through a bright PR marketing strategist named Susan Raab I was able to get interviews with Roxie Munro who is a childrens illustrator who has turned her talents loose in the digital world of apps and digital content. I preview some of her upcoming work and it’s really stunning.
Also Steve Light, a former corporate designer (I can relate) who struck out on his own a while back, became a teacher of young children and a children’s book illustrator. Over the course of his career he came up with the”Storybox” combining his talents as a storyteller, illustrator and sculptor to create an all-one-box that employs everything you need to tell a children’s story.
And finally a lady who I’ve known since first grade. Mona Shafer-Edwards is a renown court illustrator who has witnessed history by sketching the courtroom drama on cases like OJ Simpson, Paris Hilton, Michael Jackson and most recently Lindsay Lohan. If that wasn’t enough she is a talented fashion illustrator as well. Books featuring her artwork have been in bookstores for years. I had the pleasure of sitting with Mona revisiting our past and her career and she is a wonder. All in all this issue is going to be a great read and I will do my best to make it fun, informative and enlightening. Of course we’ll have the usual features, Lonfellow’s Corner, The Masters View and Mark Susnow’s Inspire Possibilities. And for all of you who love fantasy art the Journal will have a section where we unveil our five favorite fantasy artists and a small tribute to Frazetta and Boris Vallejo. So stay tuned, browse the site and keep a watch out for the Spring Edition schedule for release 3/22
For all of you sci-fi aficionados Frank Frazetta is the pinnacle of super-hero fantastical artists, the “uber-godfather” of them all.
I had the honor of working as an apprentice sort of for Ralph Bakshi when I was still in high school and for a few days I sat in on sketching sessions with Frank Frazetta. I had no previous knowledge of his work but it was obvious he was beyond awesome. So if you love Boris Vallejo, and by the hits on my site I know you do then bask in the glory that is Frazetta!
Frank Frazetta (February 9, 1928 – May 10, 2010 was an American fantasy and science fiction artist, noted for work in comic books, paperback book covers, paintings, posters, LP recordalbum covers and other media. He was the subject of a 2003 documentary.
In 1964, Frazetta’s painting of Beatle Ringo Starr for a Mad magazine ad parody caught the eye of United Artists studios. He was approached to do the movie poster for What’s New Pussycat?,and earned the equivalent of his yearly salary in one afternoon.
Frazetta also produced paintings for paperback editions of adventure books. His interpretation of Conan visually redefined the genre of sword and sorcery, and had an enormous influence on succeeding generations of artists. From this point on, Frazetta’s work was in great demand. His covers were used for other paperback editions of classic Edgar Rice Burroughsbooks, such as those from the Tarzan and Barsoom (John Carter of Mars) series. He also did several pen and ink illustrations for many of these books. His cover art only coincidentally matched the storylines inside the books, as Frazetta once explained: “I didn’t read any of it… I drew him my way. It was really rugged. And it caught on. I didn’t care about what people thought. People who bought the books never complained about it. They probably didn’t read them.”
Once Frazetta secured a reputation, movie studios lured him to work on animated movies. Most, however, would give him participation in name only, with creative control held by others. An advertisement based on his work was animated by Richard Williams in grease pencil and paint and shown in 1978. In the early 1980s, Frazetta worked with producer Ralph Bakshi on the feature Fire and Ice, released in 1983. The realism of the animation and design replicated Frazetta’s artwork. Bakshi and Frazetta were heavily involved in the production of the live-action sequences used for the film’s rotoscoped animation, from casting sessions to the final shoot. Following the release of the film, Frazetta returned to his roots in painting and pen-and-ink illustrations. Frazetta’s paintings have been used by a number of recording artists as cover art for their albums. Molly Hatchet‘s first three albums feature “The Death Dealer“, “Dark Kingdom”, and “Berserker”, respectively. Dust‘s second album, Hard Attack, features “Snow Giants”. Nazareth used “The Brain” for its 1977 album Expect No Mercy. Frazetta also created new cover artwork for Buddy Bought the Farm, the second CD of the surf horror band “The Dead Elvi”. The U.S. Army III Corps adopted “The Death Dealer” as its mascot.
Frazetta retained the original Conan paintings, and long refused to part with them. Many were displayed at the Frazetta Museum in East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania. In 2009, Frazetta’s “Conan the Conqueror” painting, the first to be offered for sale, was purchased for $1 million.
Frazetta died of a stroke on May 10, 2010, in a hospital near his residence in Florida.