Cover Story: The DC Comics Art of Brian Bolland (2011)
I’ve had this book on my ‘want list’ for a while and I finally picked it up while traveling through Omaha, Nebraska last week. I took the family to the Omaha zoo, but not without a stop at Krypton Comics. The store is covered, wall-to-wall, with awesome books, collectibles and games. I bought a couple Swamp Thing series 1 books as well, to be sure our muck-encrusted friend was represented.
The title page is a Bolland illustration that features some the more notable characters he has worked on. Naturally, Swamp Thing made the cut.
Below is a detail from the title page.
If you pick up a copy of this beautiful hardcover book, be sure to take off the dust jacket for these two amazing black and white reproductions.
The first Swamp thing cover within this Bolland book is Swamp Thing Annual #3 (1987). The gorilla-filled annual was written by Rick Veitch, but the story’s concept came from Alan Moore who was off the series by October 1987.
The Swampy annual is only mentioned at the end of the article but it provides fun insight into Watchmen.
I’d like to preface the next Bolland piece by providing information about anti-nazi and anti-fascist artist, John Heartfield (1891-1968). Provided is an article that highlights Heartfield’s photomontage work – LINK. Heartfield‘s political commentary was powerful and poignant, calling out the despicable acts perpetrated by nazism and facism. The imagery below may be triggering.
Below is a piece from Jean Heartfield.
In the Middle Ages, prisoners were killed on wheels. Now, the nazi victim is broken on the swastika.John Heartfield
As you can see from the photomontage above, Bolland repurposed Heartfield’s work. Below is a detail of Bolland explaining how he borrowed from Heartfield.
Below is a great spread focused on Bolland’s work on Killing Joke.
I love the unpublished and preliminary covers that accompany many of the featured covers.
And, you can’t forget about Bolland’s Poison Ivy. This book is packed with amazing Bolland artwork. I can’t recommend “Cover Story: The DC Comics Art of Brian Bolland (2011) enough and I wish I hadn’t waited so long to add it to my collection.