Is our comics “Art”?

3 Jun

by Mike Hansen

Bleeding Cool says the original cover painting for Tintin in America just sold for $1.6 million, a new world record. To which I say – to my university art professor, who claimed “illustration” was not “art”: SUCK IT!

Tintin in America original cover art

I’ve got 1.6 million bucks that says this is art.

That same “teacher” criticized me for presenting the class with this classic Frank Frazetta cover:

Weird Science-Fantasy #29 cover

from Weird Science-Fantasy #29 (1955). Note the masterful placement of every element of the drawing to lead the viewer’s eye.

The previous year, I had a much more open-minded art professor. For an assignment to replicate a masterwork using the same materials (I assume, to see if any students had a career in counterfeiting!), he let me do this instead:

Deathblow splash by Mike Hansen (after Jim Lee)

photo of Deathblow splash page by me (after Jim Lee), I think from Deathblow #2 (1993).

I learned more from this assignment than from anything I did in art class the following year!

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