Sunday, June 20, 2010

Al Williamson 1931 - 2010

In the last few months, we have lost some true legends in the industry, but none hit me harder than the loss this week of Al Williamson. I never had the honor of meeting the man in person, but his work has been a constant presence in my life for as long as I can remember. It was his version of Flash Gordon I was introduced to first. When I fell in love with Star Wars, he thrilled me with a daily dose in the funny page of the newspaper. In the 80's and 90's, he was hard to miss inking such greats as Curt Swan, Mike Mignola, Rick Leonardi, John Buscema, John Romita Jr., Erik Larsen, Mark Bagley, Lee Weeks, Gene Colan, Bret Blevins, Pat Olliffe, and many others. Over the last ten years, I enjoyed his work on Spider-Girl and only recently have I made an effort to discover his earlier work. In fact, it was only one week ago that I was in a comic store looking over the new collection of his Flash Gordon work and wished I had the funds to take it home. It will be mine someday!

Whenever I have sent samples of reference concerning the space-opera that I am writing, I have made sure to include some Al Williamson art in the hopes that it will inspire the artist as much as Al's work has inspired me. Below are a few personal faves, but I strongly suggest seeking out more. I have posted a few additional pieces on the Invisible Scarlet O'Neil blog, and, as always, a great resource to view his work is the Golden Age Comic Book Stories blog.

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