Thursday, June 24, 2010

Artists I Like: Adam Hughes

Okay then, time to do one of those text-based blog posts I promised a couple of days ago. Since I picked up a copy of Cover Run: The DC Comics Art of Adam Hughes at the comic book store today, I thought I'd write a little something about one of my favorite artists: Mr. Adam Hughes.
Born in Riverside, New Jersey in 1967, Adam Hughes got started in comics in the late 1980s, drawing a detective comic called Maze Agency, but it didn't take long before he was drawing DC's top super-team book, Justice League America. He also had brief runs of titles like Ghost, Penthouse Comix, Gen13: Ordinary Heroes and the Star Trek: Debt of Honor graphic novel, but his meticulous art style was probably never meant for monthly comics. For the last decade or so, he's been the cover artist for first Wonder Woman (drawing the covers for most issues between #139 and #197), then Catwoman (#45-83).
Hughes' forte is drawing gorgeous women, drawing inspiration from classic good girl artists and painters like Gill Elvgren, Norman Rockwell, Alphonse Mucha and Drew Struzan, as well as his comic book contemporaries such as Dave Stevens, Steve Rude and Jaime Hernandez.
There are many reasons I love his artwork (in addition to the pretty girls, obviously): the graceful and elegant linework, the expressiveness of the characters, his masterful use of color theory and his ability to tell a whole story in a single image.
The book I bought today, Cover Run: The DC Comics Art of Adam Hughes, features almost a hundred of his best covers in an oversized hardcover coffee-table book format. Every cover is accompanied with a "behind the scenes" commentary by Adam and, in most cases, preparatory sketches. The artwork is arranged chronologically, spanning his 20-year career at DC Comics, which means it's also a document of the artist's journey. Along the way, Adam reveals some of the secrets he learned, dropping some helpful art tips for us wannabe artists. Even at $40, this book's totally worth it.
If you want to know more about Adam Hughes, check out his website or his DeviantArt page.

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