We make a regular practice at ComicsAlliance of spotlighting particular artists or specific bodies of work, but because cartoonists, illustrators and their fans share countless numbers of great images on sites like Flickr, Tumblr, DeviantArt and seemingly infinite art blogs that we’ve created Best Art Ever (This Week), a weekly depository for just some of the pieces of especially compelling artwork that we come across in our regular travels across the Web. Some of it’s new, some of it’s old, some of it’s created by working professionals, some of it’s created by future stars, some of it’s created by talented fans, and some of it’s endearingly silly. All of it’s awesome.
In honor of this year’s 20th anniversary of the first appearance of Hellboy, the enduringly popular and endlessly entertaining ex-paranormal investigator created by Mike Mignola. One of comics' most idiosyncratic characters with a supporting cast to match, Hellboy is cited by many artists rivaling Batman as the most fun character to draw and reimagine in different styles. Throughout the existence of Best Art we've featured loads and loads of visions of Hellboy and his friends in the Bureau for Paranormal Research and Defense, and what follows is a compilation of some of our favorites.
The comic book, animation, illustration, pinup, mashup, fan art and design communities are generating amazing artwork of myriad styles and tastes, all of which ends up on the Internet and filtered into ComicsAlliance’s Best Art Ever (This Week). These images convey senses of mood and character — not to mention artistic skill — but comic books are specifically a medium of sequential narratives, and great sequential art has to be both beautiful (totally subjective!) and clear in its storytelling (not so subjective!). The words and the pictures need to work together to tell the story and create whatever tone, emotion and indeed world the story requires. The contributions of every person on a creative team, from the writer to the artist(s) to the letterers, are necessary to achieving a great page of sequential storytelling.
It is the special nature of comic books that we’re celebrating in this recurring feature: Best Sequential Art Ever (This Week).
Mark your calendars accordingly. A new trilogy of graphic novels by Faith Erin Hicks of The Adventures of Superhero Girl and Friends with Boys is going to kick off in 2016, and according to the far-in-advance press, it's going to be a grand, sweeping story.
The Nameless City will be in the vein of such works as Avatar: The Last Airbender, Bone, and Earthsea, according to publisher First Second Books. That's some big talk, but Hicks has the art to back it up.
Following the success of the 2012 installment, Smut Peddler -- the anthology featuring woman-made, sex-positive comics -- is returning in 2014. The newest edition will feature work from creators Spike Trotman, Faith Erin Hicks, Jess Fink, Jen Vaughn, Kate Leth, Niki Smith and, quite possibly, you.
Faith Erin Hicks' 2013 Comic-Con trip was very different from her first. Five years ago she took a "quintessential broke SDCC trip," and this year she was a special guest of the show. Like many in her situation would be, the creator of Friends With Boys and Demonology 101 was in a bit of disbelief about the difference in her experience five years later, so much so that she decided to chronicle her time at 2013 Comic-Con in a series of journal comics. The entire thing is charming and sincere, particularly the parts where she meets Joss Whedon (an idol of hers and the inspiration behind Demonology 101) and the creators of Avatar: The Last Airbender, who actually remember Hicks and are familiar with her work, a revelation that causes her head to explode. (Editors Note: Her head did not literally explode).
Peppermint Butler fans, take note: You do not want to cross Princess Bubblegum's trusted servant by forging concert tickets. Though it may seem harmless to pick up tickets to see the Land of Ooo's most popular rock band from a seedy stranger in a dark alley, it's wise to seek official admission according to the backup story in Adventure Time: Marceline and the Scream Queens #4, which arrives on October 10. Joining regular writer a
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