10 February 2010

Solid As A Rockwell: Art of John Watson

We know Norman Rockwell never freelanced for either Marvel or DC Comics,  but that didn't keep us from doing  a double-take when we first saw comic book artist John Watson's Saturday Evening Post-style portraits of The Marvel Family. Watson's subjects may be superheroes while Rockwell's were folks of a more ordinary calling, but both artists infuse their creations with a sense of hope and spirit that suggest a kinder, simpler era.

Watson and Rockwell's commonalities don't end there, either. Like Rockwell, whose greatest legacies are the many covers he created for the Evening Post, Watson has made his name through cover art as well.  Many of Marvel Comics and DC Comics' best selling titles feature his singular style -- most notably, Marvel Apes and DC's  Justice Society of America: Strange Adventures, both perfect fits for the nostalgic essence of comics' Golden Age his art conveys.   What truly separates John Watson's comics work, however, is his choice of media;  he is one of the few remaining comic book artists who specializes in painting in oils. Aside from his occasional penciling projects, Watson's heroes come to life as oil on canvas, and on a scale (14x20) much larger than the pages of any comic book.

We've included our favorite John Watson's below, but the man's a pro and he loves himself some superheroes. A visit to his website is like a walk through an art museum, if art museums were all cool paintings of awesome super people. It's a free ticket, and your tour starts HERE.
  abbracadabbling pairs Rockwell's famous The Runaway 
with Watson's own humorous variation of the piece.  
Here, Wolverine's misguided and murderous son Daken sits in for the little hobo boy.

   Spider-Man: Return of the Lizard (2003)
 Batman vs The Joker III (2003)
 The Scarecrow (October, 2001)
 Aquaman (Original)

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