A MODEST COMIC COLLECTION PART 5

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I’m still opening a few boxes in my comics collection and first up came this  set that I’d especially boxed together featuring some more Bernie  Wrightson artwork. His artwork was extensively featured in the Warren magazines. Jim Warren hoped to emulate the span of excellent stories and artwork of the EC comic line that had fallen foul of censorship in the 1950’s. In the early 1960’s, by using many of those same EC artists ,he side-stepped any such problems by publishing stories in a magazine format which was deemed more adult.The thinking back then was that “comics” were specifically for children and magazines were for adults.The “comics” medium has since moved a long way from those ideas.  The covers were  painted  full-colour, in the style of the old pulp magazines that had been at the height of their popularity from the 1930’s to the 1950’s  .Inside the artwork was black and white .It was rendered in a variety of techniques using pencil , pen and ink and  grey washes .These were at their their best in the early years when artists such as Frank Frazetta and Jose “Pepe”Gonzales were producing the cover paintings, but Bernie Wrightson  contributed some really detailed work for them too , sometimes concentrating on depictions of Edgar Allen Poe’s  gothic horror tales.Wrightson’s work featured in “Eerie”, “Creepy” and “Vampirella” but I have here also two rare magazines called “Web of Horror” and a copy of the “Monster Times” which featured his work.Bernie , who is currently suffering from cancer  , at one point in the  1970’s  shared a studio with the late   Jeffrey Jones  an excellent comic artist and fine painter ,who transgendered into Jeffrey Catherine Jones , Barry Winsor Smith who began with Marvel Comics but became a fine art illustrator  and  comic artist Mike Kaluta.Between them they produced the excellent book “The Studio”.It’s worth searching out the film documentary “Better Things” , which features Jones’ work , life struggles and alcoholism with commentary by Bernie and Mike Kaluta among others. 

 

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I made the box to keep these  Wrightson magazines together.

COMICS JOURNAL PLUS FANZINES

These are what is now called “prozines”. They are magazines devoted to comics , comic art and comic writers. They developed gradually from the amateur- produced  small fanzines of the 1950’s and 1960’s which fans produced cheaply on old “ditto” copying machines. Gradually the production values improved with new litho-printing techniques of local printers , until eventually , professionally produced magazines tapped into the demand for more information about the comics and their creators. “The Comics Journal”, “Comic Book Marketplace ” and “Comic Book Artist” delved deeply into the history and current themes of the medium.I have many of these , of which this is a small selection.

 

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One of the “collage” boxes I made for some of my 1970’s American  comics .

CORTO MALTESE

I have various comics from around the world .These copies of “Corto Maltese” were picked up at a street market in Sicily some years ago .These  are beautifully produced fat  comic magazines, printed on excellent paper stock , featuring artwork by the likes of Milo Manara, Hugo Pratt, Federico Fellini and  Guido Crepax, with page runs of 150 in both black and white and colour.

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Another shot of some of those  comic collage boxes, featuring Jack Kirby artwork.

OZ BOX 1

This my psychedelic box which began as a wooden wine- box . It was too good to throw away, what with its tongue and grooved joints, its hinged lid and the brass locking  clasp.I used a lot of my poster imagery and badges to convert it into something a little more specialfor my collection of “OZ” magazines. These aren’t strictly comics, but I think of them as artistic fanzines which actually used a good proportion of underground comix material and obscure graphics.

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OZ BOX 2

 

 

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The collage continued into the inside of the opened box.

 

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That’s one of a few copies i have of the underground paper “Frendz” which was something like the hippie “International Times” {IT}

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OZ COLLECTION 1

My collection of  19 very collectible  OZ magazines from the early 1970s.Some with great Robert Crumb covers such as “The Acid OZ” and “Thrilling OZ Murder Comics”… and also two separate  different colour printings of the “OZ  Special PIG ” issue….Oh , the nostalgia !!

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