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A Comic Cover A Day (is awesome)

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  • mwhitt80mwhitt80 Posts: 4,060
    I've really liked the bully wars covers I've seen.
  • The late, great Russ Heath with color by Jack Adler.

    image

    Does anyone know what the coloring process was for these covers? Were they separated from full color paintings, or were they hand separated with tone washes (sort of like stone lithography... which is what they seem to look like).
  • Tonebone said:

    The late, great Russ Heath with color by Jack Adler.

    image

    Does anyone know what the coloring process was for these covers? Were they separated from full color paintings, or were they hand separated with tone washes (sort of like stone lithography... which is what they seem to look like).
    Heath did an ink wash over his blacks, and then Jack Adler used the standard comic book coloring practices of the time, using 25%, 50%, 75%, and/or 100% of the Cyan, Yellow, and Magenta plates to color the cover. But when the Black plate with Heath’s gray washes in a full range of tone was added to the mix, you end up with a somewhat painterly feel to the image. DC still saved money on the printing, using their limited color separations, but got a more sophisticated looking cover. Adler probably put a bit more thought into the work than usual, though, having to compensate for the dulling effect of the gray tones.

    Heath, by the way, was not entirely happy with the results. He thought they looked too muddy.

  • nweathingtonnweathington Posts: 6,305
    edited September 2018
    Today’s entry from the DC cover-a-day calendar: Catwoman #2 (Feb. 2002) by Darwyn Cooke.

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  • image

    Pencils and inks by Herb Trimpe, with alterations by John Romita.
  • Today’s entry from the DC cover-a-day calendar: Wonder Woman #150 (Nov. 1999) by Adam Hughes.

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  • BryanBryan Posts: 109
    Not the best cover ever released, but it made me laugh. Jason Howard is the artist.

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  • nweathingtonnweathington Posts: 6,305
    edited September 2018
    Today’s entry from the DC cover-a-day calendar: Showcase #34 (Sept.-Oct. 1961), pencilled by Gil Kane and inked by Murphy Anderson. The first appearance of the Silver Age Atom.

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  • Today’s entry from the DC cover-a-day calendar: The Power of Shazam! #40 (July 1998), painted by Jerry Ordway.

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  • nweathingtonnweathington Posts: 6,305
    edited October 2018
    Today’s entry from the DC cover-a-day calendar: Superman Unchained #1 (Aug. 2013) variant cover by José Luis García-López.

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  • nweathingtonnweathington Posts: 6,305
    Today’s entry from the DC cover-a-day calendar: Batgirl #47 (Mar. 2016) by Babs Tarr.

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  • ToneboneTonebone Posts: 860

    Tonebone said:

    The late, great Russ Heath with color by Jack Adler.

    image

    Does anyone know what the coloring process was for these covers? Were they separated from full color paintings, or were they hand separated with tone washes (sort of like stone lithography... which is what they seem to look like).
    Heath did an ink wash over his blacks, and then Jack Adler used the standard comic book coloring practices of the time, using 25%, 50%, 75%, and/or 100% of the Cyan, Yellow, and Magenta plates to color the cover. But when the Black plate with Heath’s gray washes in a full range of tone was added to the mix, you end up with a somewhat painterly feel to the image. DC still saved money on the printing, using their limited color separations, but got a more sophisticated looking cover. Adler probably put a bit more thought into the work than usual, though, having to compensate for the dulling effect of the gray tones.

    Heath, by the way, was not entirely happy with the results. He thought they looked too muddy.

    I just heard an interview with Marv Wolfman, and he said he was working in the DC production department at the time, doing cover color separations (Which were done in-house instead of being farmed out)... he said those covers were indeed done with a different type of separation, by hand, but with washes instead of solid patches, to give the colors softer transitions and gradients, and that Adler wouldn't allow anybody but himself to do them.
  • nweathingtonnweathington Posts: 6,305
    Tonebone said:

    Tonebone said:

    The late, great Russ Heath with color by Jack Adler.

    image

    Does anyone know what the coloring process was for these covers? Were they separated from full color paintings, or were they hand separated with tone washes (sort of like stone lithography... which is what they seem to look like).
    Heath did an ink wash over his blacks, and then Jack Adler used the standard comic book coloring practices of the time, using 25%, 50%, 75%, and/or 100% of the Cyan, Yellow, and Magenta plates to color the cover. But when the Black plate with Heath’s gray washes in a full range of tone was added to the mix, you end up with a somewhat painterly feel to the image. DC still saved money on the printing, using their limited color separations, but got a more sophisticated looking cover. Adler probably put a bit more thought into the work than usual, though, having to compensate for the dulling effect of the gray tones.

    Heath, by the way, was not entirely happy with the results. He thought they looked too muddy.

    I just heard an interview with Marv Wolfman, and he said he was working in the DC production department at the time, doing cover color separations (Which were done in-house instead of being farmed out)... he said those covers were indeed done with a different type of separation, by hand, but with washes instead of solid patches, to give the colors softer transitions and gradients, and that Adler wouldn't allow anybody but himself to do them.
    Okay, cool! I either slightly misremembered what I'd read about it, or got it mixed up with another series of covers. For whatever reason I was thinking only the black plate had washes. But I do know that Heath did the black ink wash and wasn't completely satisfied with the final results. I think that was an indictment of the technology of the time, and the quality of the paper, rather than any slight towards Adler’s work though. Adler was excellent at his job.
  • ToneboneTonebone Posts: 860

    Tonebone said:

    Tonebone said:

    The late, great Russ Heath with color by Jack Adler.

    image

    Does anyone know what the coloring process was for these covers? Were they separated from full color paintings, or were they hand separated with tone washes (sort of like stone lithography... which is what they seem to look like).
    Heath did an ink wash over his blacks, and then Jack Adler used the standard comic book coloring practices of the time, using 25%, 50%, 75%, and/or 100% of the Cyan, Yellow, and Magenta plates to color the cover. But when the Black plate with Heath’s gray washes in a full range of tone was added to the mix, you end up with a somewhat painterly feel to the image. DC still saved money on the printing, using their limited color separations, but got a more sophisticated looking cover. Adler probably put a bit more thought into the work than usual, though, having to compensate for the dulling effect of the gray tones.

    Heath, by the way, was not entirely happy with the results. He thought they looked too muddy.

    I just heard an interview with Marv Wolfman, and he said he was working in the DC production department at the time, doing cover color separations (Which were done in-house instead of being farmed out)... he said those covers were indeed done with a different type of separation, by hand, but with washes instead of solid patches, to give the colors softer transitions and gradients, and that Adler wouldn't allow anybody but himself to do them.
    Okay, cool! I either slightly misremembered what I'd read about it, or got it mixed up with another series of covers. For whatever reason I was thinking only the black plate had washes. But I do know that Heath did the black ink wash and wasn't completely satisfied with the final results. I think that was an indictment of the technology of the time, and the quality of the paper, rather than any slight towards Adler’s work though. Adler was excellent at his job.
    I wasn't trying to correct you... just thought it was cool it came up in the interview. Those covers are soooo good.
  • nweathingtonnweathington Posts: 6,305
    Tonebone said:

    Tonebone said:

    Tonebone said:

    The late, great Russ Heath with color by Jack Adler.

    image

    Does anyone know what the coloring process was for these covers? Were they separated from full color paintings, or were they hand separated with tone washes (sort of like stone lithography... which is what they seem to look like).
    Heath did an ink wash over his blacks, and then Jack Adler used the standard comic book coloring practices of the time, using 25%, 50%, 75%, and/or 100% of the Cyan, Yellow, and Magenta plates to color the cover. But when the Black plate with Heath’s gray washes in a full range of tone was added to the mix, you end up with a somewhat painterly feel to the image. DC still saved money on the printing, using their limited color separations, but got a more sophisticated looking cover. Adler probably put a bit more thought into the work than usual, though, having to compensate for the dulling effect of the gray tones.

    Heath, by the way, was not entirely happy with the results. He thought they looked too muddy.

    I just heard an interview with Marv Wolfman, and he said he was working in the DC production department at the time, doing cover color separations (Which were done in-house instead of being farmed out)... he said those covers were indeed done with a different type of separation, by hand, but with washes instead of solid patches, to give the colors softer transitions and gradients, and that Adler wouldn't allow anybody but himself to do them.
    Okay, cool! I either slightly misremembered what I'd read about it, or got it mixed up with another series of covers. For whatever reason I was thinking only the black plate had washes. But I do know that Heath did the black ink wash and wasn't completely satisfied with the final results. I think that was an indictment of the technology of the time, and the quality of the paper, rather than any slight towards Adler’s work though. Adler was excellent at his job.
    I wasn't trying to correct you... just thought it was cool it came up in the interview. Those covers are soooo good.
    No, I'm glad you posted the info. I just hate when I get things in my memory banks mixed up. It's annoying. Who was the interview with? I'm curious as to who'd think to ask Marv about it, or how it came up.

    But, yes, I love those covers.
  • nweathingtonnweathington Posts: 6,305
    Today’s entry from the DC cover-a-day calendar: Beware the Creeper #2 (Jul.-Aug. 1968), pencils and inks by Steve Ditko. I don't think Ditko was particularly good at designing covers, but the Creeper covers were all quite good. Of course, Carmine Infantino was still overseeing covers at this point, and it's quite likely he either gave Ditko a layout or at least art directed the layout with Ditko. Either way, love those tight close-ups of faces.

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  • nweathingtonnweathington Posts: 6,305
    Today’s entry from the DC cover-a-day calendar: Superman #199 (Aug. 1967), penciled by Carmine Infantino and inked by Murphy Anderson, featuring the first of many head-to-head races.

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  • Today’s entry (actually Monday’s—been a bit busy) from the DC cover-a-day calendar: Wonder Woman #177 (Jul.-Aug. 1968), layout by Carmine Infantino, pencils and inks by Irv Novick (who went way to heavy on the inking of WW and Supergirl’s faces). Klamos is not one of Carmine’s best designs.

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  • Today’s entry from the DC cover-a-day calendar is a good one: Plastic Man #11 (Feb.-Mar. 1976), penciled by the great Ramona Fradon and inked by Tenny Henson. While Henson’s first work in the US appeared in 1975, he’d actually been in the comic book industry—or to be more specific, the Filipino comix industy—even longer than Fradon (Henson in the late ’40s, Fradon in 1950).

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  • Today’s entry from the DC cover-a-day calendar: Zatanna #11 (May 2011) by Adam Hughes. I flipped through the rest of the calendar, and I didn't see anything else worth posting, so this will likely be the last of these posts, but at least it went out on a high note.

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  • Oct. 1956: It's been a long while since I posted one of these, but here's Batman #104, penciled and inked by Sheldon Moldoff. In 1953, Moldoff started ghosting for Bob Kane, becoming one of his three primary artists (along with Win Mortimer and Dick Sprang). While it didn’t pay as well as his usual rate, the job offered him steady work in an uncertain time. And because of the anonymity working as “Bob Kane” provided him, he was still able to get other work from DC on the side. He continued in this way for 14 years, co-creating the original Batwoman and Bat-Girl, Bat-Mite, Mr. Freeze, Poison Ivy, and Ace the Bat-Hound (among others) along the way. DC fired him (along with other DC mainstays, George Papp and Wayne Boring) in 1967, about a year after buying out Bob Kane’s contract. Moldoff moved to animation, initially reuniting with Bob Kane to do storyboards for Kane’s Courageous Cat & Minute Mouse, and promotional comics. He did return to DC for one last hurrah in 2000, drawing a chapter of Evan Dorkin’s fantastic World’s Funnest one-shot.

    As for this particular cover, it’s an obvious rip-off of 1953’s B-movie classic The Beast from 20,000 Fathoms.

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  • Nov. 1956: Towards the end of 1956, Quality Comics began having serious distribution problems. Like Atlas/Marvel, they were distributed by American News Company. ANC had been in decline after facing antitrust litigation from the US government in 1952, and were now on their last legs. Like Marvel, Arnold found only one option to replace ANC. Unlike Marvel, however, “Busy” Arnold (owner of Quality) had no interest in going to Independent News (the sister company of DC Comics). He’d been very successful and was willing to retire from publishing since his son wasn’t interested in carrying on the business. And so at the end of the year, Arnold called it quits. He offered to sell Quality’s catalog of titles to his editor, Al Grenet, but Grenet didn’t have the necessary funds, so he sold the titles to DC instead—though he held on to his best-seller, Blackhawk, for a while longer (it’s unclear when Arnold finally sold it to them outright). But Blackhawk was naturally the title DC was most interested in, and they worked out a licensing deal. Two months after Quality’s last issue of Blackhawk appeared, Blackhawk #108 (along with three other former Quality titles) hit the stands with a DC bullet on its cover. DC kept the same numbering, and even kept on the same creative team of writer Robert Bernstein, penciller Dick Dillin, and inker Chuck Cuidera. Cover by the aforementioned Dillin and Cuidera.

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