Friday, March 19, 2010

All You Need Is Art

Friday Comic Book Day.

Today I am sharing a couple of seemingly random love stories. What connects them, is the fact that they are all by artists who were known at the time for other work, or for similar work at a different company.

Most artists in the fifties took their jobs where they could get them, but some landed at a particular publisher, which, for collectors at least, became synonimosu with their work. Bill Everett, the subject of an upcoming and eagerly awaited book for Fantagraphics Press (I believe), landed at the Stan Lee run Martin Goodman company Timely (or Atlas), where he drew many great and well-remembered horror stories, as well as a few selected stories in other genres. He drew relatively few romance stories, but here we have him apparently drawing an unsigned story for Famous Funnies' Personal Love #24, not noted in the Grand Comicbook Database. This book is mostly know for having a short run of Frank Frazetta drawn stories (some of which have been collected a couple of years back by Fantagraphics in a one shot comic), but the appearance of Bill Everett in this issue suggests that a closer look at this book might be welcome. The date is weird; this story appeared in the November 193 issue, when Everett must have had no shortage of work from Stan Lee.

Before that I have two sories from a 1954 issue of First Love Illustrated. Under a spectacular cover by Lee Elias (who usually didn't go all-out on his romance covers, or at least not as far as he did on the Harvey war and horror books) we find Bill Draut and John Prentice, who at that time were both doing plenty of work for Prize and probably even for Jack Kirby and Joe Simon's own shortlived Mainline company (which produced most of their books in this period). Harry Mendrick has been doing a great issue by issue rundown of these Prize and Mainline books over at the Simon and Kirby blog at the Kirby Museum site. I think he wil be as surprises as I was to find these artists even had the time to do an outside job such as this. As this is the only issue I have from this period, I don't know if it was a single occurance, or if the gets worked nights to achieve such an output. But artwise, these stories are no rushjobs.

First Love Illustrated #44

Personal Love #24:

2 comments: said...

Fine work by Everett!

Harry Mendryk said...

No surprise about Prentice and Draut working for Harvey. I have posted about them from time to time. I am not sure why Meskin never did any Harvey romances or why Draut and Prentice never seemed to work on any of the Harvey horror. The chronology
is a bit confusing because Harvey
reprinted some of the stuff by Prentice and Draut.