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Comic Covers "Swiped" from Fine Art

Comics vs. fine art? The secret X-Over?

“What is with this violent perspective? And these hard, harsh lines? Where did you learn to draw like this?”

Comic books, of course, was the answer, but I wasn’t going to tell her that.

Those questions were asked of me by my professor when I took a 101 drawing class back in college.  I went in hoping to learn about anatomy and line widths and foreshortening and came out with a lot of time spent staring at hairy, out-of-shape, middle-aged naked men for life-drawing studies.   The conclusion I reached from the experience was that the worlds of comics and fine arts were antithetical, more at odds than even Marvel and DC.  

But must it be so?

At G-Man’s suggestion, I got to thinking about a number of comics covers over the years that have paid tributes to works of art.   So here are the first five that popped to my mind… see if you can guess from what each one takes inspiration.

EXHIBIT A -- WORLD'S FINEST COMICS #305
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

EXHIBIT B -- SPIDER-MAN: THE OTHER
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

EXHIBIT C -- SHADE, THE CHANGING MAN #35
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

EXHIBIT D -- NEW X-MEN #42
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

EXHIBIT E -- A promo for SOLAR: MAN OF THE ATOM
(with art by today's special podcast guest, Darick Robertson!)
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
So put up on your thinking caps and scratch your noggins. See if you can guess what wellsprings of art these cover's flow from.  And when you want answers, reveal the hidden spoilers beneath.
 


-- Tom Pinchuk is the writer of UNIMAGINABLE for Arcana Comics and HYBRID BASTARDS! for Archaia Comics.   Watch out for the HYBRID BASTARDS! hardcover collection this March - - available for pre-order now on Amazon.com

18 Comments
Posted by Bearded Justice

Neat.  The only one I didn't know was the X-Men.
Posted by Emperor Gonzo Noir

art imitates art which then regurgitates more art

Posted by Tyler Starke
@Bearded Justice said:
" Neat.  The only one I didn't know was the X-Men. "
Same here
Posted by CATMANEXE
Posted by DoomDoomDoom
Batman on the cover of the first issue resembles M.C. Escher's Rind quite a bit I think.
Posted by Nyogtha

I liked all the covers that Marvel did for the Wolverine Appreciation month.

Edited by Riezner
Posted by Emperor Gonzo Noir
@CATMANEXE: damn I can't believe I forgot that one
Posted by The Psyentist

That's awesome.

Posted by Marshal Victory

"Those question were asked of me by my professor when I took a 101 drawing class back in college.  I went in hoping to learn about anatomy and line widths and foreshortening and came out with a lot of time logged staring at hairy, out-of-shape, middle-aged naked men for life-drawing studies. " 
 
An now you know why i didnt go on to collage with art scholorships an grants.But this man http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burne_Hogarth can teach even me how to draw the human form better. Including cloth he surely can help any one. 
 
A former inker of Andy kuberts work turned me on tho these books  .. 
  • Dynamic Anatomy (1958, reprint 2003, ISBN 0823015521)
  • Drawing the Human Head (1965, reprint, 1989, ISBN 0823013766)
  • Dynamic Figure Drawing (1970, reprint, 1996, ISBN 0823015777)
  • Drawing Dynamic Hands (1977, reprint 1988, ISBN 0823013685)
  • Dynamic Light and Shade (1981, reprint 1992, ISBN 0823015815)
  • Dynamic Wrinkles and Drapery (1995, ISBN 0823015874)
  • IF you can find them they will help alot.Better than a collage teacher who gives A's for beer each week by far.
Edited by Grendel

One of my favorites (Both the original painting and the cover): 
 
 



 

Posted by MrMiracle77

How about the JLA/JSA thanksgiving based on the Norman Rockwell?

Posted by xerox_kitty

There is a small (very small) section for fine art tributes in the Homage Covers page.  It could do with some more examples like these to bolster it up a bit more :)

Moderator
Posted by Illyana Rasputin
@xerox-kitty said:
" There is a small (very small) section for fine art tributes in the Homage Covers page.  It could do with some more examples like these to bolster it up a bit more :) "
That's a really great entry, by the way. Very well done.
Posted by ClockworkDrago

like that one avengers issue with hawkeye and scarlet witch based on klimts works

Posted by JimmyKudo09

I especially like the Spiderman/Da Vinci cover.

Posted by ArtisticSean

 I have posted several examples of many comics doing this
here:
 http://forums.superherohype.com/showthread.php?t=237002&highlight=fine
 
Artists in comics paying homage to an artist's style or work of art, including  MC EscherMichelangelo's PiataNorman Rockwell
 
check it out.

Posted by Lissbirds

I'm surprised all of DC's references to The Pietá didn't make the list.  (Well, it's sculpture, but still.)  It's been used a LOT.