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Monday, January 24, 2011

POST # 37 - THUN'DA plus FRANK FRAZETTA INTERVIEW



In Memoriam 
Frank Frazetta
(2/9/28 - 5/10/10)


This is my first opportunity to post a tribute to legendary Frank Frazetta, who passed from our midst over 8 months ago. His name is recognized the world over as one of greatest fantasy artists of the last generation, yet even to say that pays him a disservice. He was more than that, as his body of work stretches well beyond fantasy and science fiction. To comic book artists, he was the ultimate comic artist; to painters and cover illustrators his work has been regarded as the epitome of the genre for decades. He has done work ranging from comic strips (ghosting for Al Capp on Li'l Abner, Johnny Comet, etc.), to westerns, to funny animals, to horror and science fiction, to animated film design, movie and fantasy posters (if you owned at least one Frazetta poster in your life, raise your hand with me), and his name will be forever linked to Edgar Rice Burroughs and Robert E. Howard as the cover artist who brought new life to the pulp characters they created in 1912 (Tarzan) and 1932 (Conan) respectively. Modern enthusiasts will remember his invaluable contributions to the Warren magazine line in the 60's. To most of you, a history lesson isn't really needed. But, for those who know little about him, here today you will find much to enlighten you. Not in my words, but in Frank's own words.

There's much we can learn from the master of illustration. Some information here is taken from FRAZETTA #1, a black and white volume produced and published by Frazetta himself in 1969, as his fame and fortune were still rising. Included here is also a biography from 1975, written by Frank himself, telling us what he thought were important accomplishments in his life up to that point, telling us himself the things he thought were important for us to know about him.

Also here from The FRAZETTA Treasury (1975) is a rare interview with Frank and his wife Ellie Frazetta, who was also his business manager and contributed greatly to his success. Sadly, she passed away in 2009, a year before Frank.
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[APOCOLYTIC ADDENDUM-
As readers Rick Tucker and Mr. Door Tree have pointed out to me, there is apparently major controversy surrounding the authenticity of the information contained in the volume THE FRAZETTA TREASURY...until today I had never heard of this. Since it was published and then purchased by myself I have always believed it was an authentic Frazetta volume, published with the full authority and under the supervision of Frazetta. Allegedly this may not be the case. As I mention in my comments below, it is still hard for me to accept, since it reads like a real interview and 99.9% seems verifiably accurate!
Still, I cannot ignore Rick Tuckers assertion, as well as Mr. Door Tree's comments on my other blog. I know that Mr. Door Tree has extensive knowledge in this area, and when he weighs in, I therefore have to consider it as accurate.
Thank you, Rick Tucker and Mr. Door Tree.
The rest of you can read it and comment below with your opinion or any information that may shed more light on this controversy.
Thank you all.
- THE APOCOLYTE Speaks]

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So much has been said before, so many books have been written about him, and other blogs paying tribute to the man are impossible to count. As an artist myself, one cannot help but be influenced by his genius.

So I'll keep it short and let the man speak to you himself, through his words and his artwork.

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(Thun'da was a creation of Frank Frazetta, published by Magazine Enterprises in 1952.
Here is his origin from Thun'da #1.)

THUN'DA!
(click images to enlarge)











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As I leave you for now, I want you to look at the 1st panel of Thun'da page 10 (last page) done in 1952, and now go back and look at the photo of Frank painting Conan facing the giant snake (photo taken in 1967).
Frazetta certainly knew how to create compelling and thoughtfully designed imagery, and where the giant snake looked fantastic in '52, he recycled and further refined the imagery 15 years later and it became the basis for Lancer paperbacks classic and stunning CONAN THE USURPER cover art.

 There is so much Frank Frazetta contributed to us that I will assuredly be sharing more of his genius with you in days and months to come. In the next day or two, on my other blog, I will be posting little known information about Frank Frazetta's first published oil painting (click here), and trying to set GCD's record straight. Stay tuned!




KREEE - GAAHH!!


Just when I thought things couldn't get any worse!

After being sabotaged by hackers, after months of exile beyond my control, I finally managed to get a new computer up and running, to return to the online world of comics, art, and blogging, I returned only to discover that one of the greatest comic blogs ever, TEN CENT DREAMS just shut down within hours of my return. Created and managed by comic expert, writer, artist and film-maker Lysdexicuss (aka Jamie Wilson), TEN CENT DREAMS was a haven for wonderful comic book stories and art from the early Golden Age through the Silver Age and sometimes beyond. I know and you know that there are plenty of comic blogs around, but only a handful that were/are as entertaining and fun to visit. A prolific talent, Jamie has several projects to occupy his time right now, and at present can no longer maintain TEN CENT DREAMS.
I know that I speak for many who have spent hours and hours enjoying what he had created for us all, and for all of us who are going to miss his one-of-a-kind blog, I can only offer this plaintive cry of
"KREEE-GAAHH!!"
It is a cry of sorrow, and of hope, that one day he will return.
Thanks for the memories, Lysdexicuss.
If I may be so bold as to speak for your many fans, we wish you success on whatever you do. Godspeed.
An era has passed, and we are better for what you contributed to us all.

As of this writing, you can still find the genius of Jamie's artwork and writing on his other blogs,
and

Please take the time to drop by and check them out,
and tell him THE APOCOLYTE sent ya..

Saturday, January 22, 2011

RETURN OF THE APOCOLYTE!



Hello, fans of great art!

The Apocolyte has returned.
More great black and white comic stories coming soon.

First, a brief message.
For anyone who cares, I didn't forget about you or abandon you, but the truth is I was the victim of cyber terrorism which destroyed my computer and has played havoc with my personal life as well as my income for the past several months. That is why I haven't been able to post anything for nearly a year.

To anyone who fancies themselves a computer hacker, go get a real job and stop destroying peoples work. The fact is I have a family and an elderly father who depend on me to take care of them, and when you attack my computer and my personal work, you are attacking and hurting not only me, but several people who depend on me. Life is hard enough nowadays.

Not only did these cyber-schmucks ruin my life for the past year, but they prevented all of you wonderful folks from enjoying the posts I had prepared. For that alone, I am angry at these spoiled cyber-creeps. So, you break-a my computer, I break-a you face! Go find a real hobby instead of destroying what someone else created...

Well, I'm back, and starting from scratch once again. Please be patient as I begin to re-scan all my stories and then soon enough I'll be posting with regularity.

Though I had never intended to do so, I will be setting up a PayPal link here and on my other blogs so that anyone who wishes to may offer donations, and I again say that I must do so as a real neccesity at this point. If you enjoy this blog, or any of my other blogs, please consider a gift of any size if you are able. I thank you for considering this, and I and my family thank you for your viewership and support. The link is on the right just above the Followers - Please click on the PayPal / Donate button (you don't need a PayPal account). I am grateful for any amount you can manage. Thank you again.
Please stay tuned for much more to come.

Thank you!

To commission original artwork of any type, email me at theapocolyte@hotmail.com