Barnyard Comics v1 #27, 1949 - The first of two text stories introduces Nubby, a lamb that does the least amount of work possible. Rather than the typical single piece of horizontal art, Frank Frazetta draws two illustrations (see interior page below). Their small size seems underwhelming, but upon close inspection, there's a high level of draftsmanship. Other artists in this issue include Jack Bradbury. This is number 15 of 16 Barnyard Comics issues with Frazetta art and/or covers. Find >this issue or more >Frazetta or >Barnyard Comics issues on ebay.
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"Nubby the Lamb" Frazetta text illo pencils and inks 1 page = ***

Frank Frazetta
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Iron Man v1 #100 marvel comic book cover art by Jim Starlin
Jim Starlin
Iron Man v1 #100, 1977 - Touting the one hundredth issue, Jim Starlin does a splendid job designing the cover. Iron Man snaps a steel girder in two, calling attention to the masthead. In the background, stone-carved numerals splinter and crack from age. Note how the hero's right leg is shadowed, positioning it further back for more interesting symmetry and depth. Starin's layout is deceptively simple yet powerful. Other artists in this issue include George Tuska and Mike Esposito. This is number 4 of 6 Iron Man issues with Starlin art and/or covers. Find >this issue or more >Starlin or >Iron Man issues on ebay.
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Starlin cover pencils and inks = ****

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John Byrne
Batman and Captain America v1 no #, 1997 - Although Marvel and DC collaborations occurred in the past, this is the first time these two characters  appear in the same story. They both debuted in the 1940s, which John Byrne chooses as the setting. To break the monotony of over sixty pages, the writer/artist uses plenty of full page splashes throughout. Even on normal pages, usually one large panel commands attention. Byrne's renditions are softened and slightly simplified, a nod to the more primitive artistic styles of the early golden age. This is number 1 of 1 Batman and Captain America issues with Byrne art and/or covers. Find >this issue or more >Byrne, >Batman or >Captain America issues on ebay.
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Byrne cover pencils and inks = ***
Byrne story pencils and inks 64 pages = ***

John Byrne
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Barry Windsor Smith
New Mutants v1 #48, 1986 - Mirage and Cannonball face off against a mutant-hunting Sentinel on this last Barry Smith cover of the series. The nicely positioned layout draws the focal point toward the antagonist rather than the heroes. The Sentinel's size is amplified by not only the relative scale, but the enormous foreshortened hands on either side. The pink and purple hues skew toward an unusually feminine palette, but does reinforce Smith's sophisticated lines. Other artists in this issue include Jackson Guice and P. Craig Russell. This is number 10 of 10 New Mutants issues with Smith art and/or covers. Find >this issue or more >Smith or >New Mutants comics on ebay.
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Smith cover pencils and inks = ****

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Battlestar Galactica v1 #18, 1980 - When the ship's biologist turns into a red-hued man-ape, Apollo and company must cure him of his condition while avoiding his bloodlust. Between Sal Buscema's layouts and Klaus Janson's inks, Walt Simonson's contribution is simply unrecognizable. The drawings are largely& mediocre and the panel sequences monotonous. The sole exception is the bold splash on page 17, depicting a confrontation between Apollo and the newly transformed Enoch. The high point of the issue, however, is Michael Golden's terrific simian-themed cover. This is number 10 of 14 Battlestar Galactica issues with Simonson art and/or covers. Find >this issue or more >Simonson or >Battlestar Galactica comics on ebay.
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"Forbidden Fruit" Simonson story pencils (Sal Busecma layouts, Klaus Janson inks) 17 pages = *

Walt Simonson
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Cowboy Action v1 #11, 1956 - Going after his brother's killer, a gunman tracks down the man responsible to a peaceful family-owned ranch. Artfully drawn, Al Williamson employs shadows and heavy blacks to convey an ominous mood. His opening page is particularly good, rendering fine details on the determined rider and his horse. Matt Baker's effort tells of a farm boy who idolizes Billy the Kid. Past the opening splash, the artwork comes alive with texture and fluid linework. Combined with his free-form layouts, the story teems with movement and expressiveness (see interior page shown below). Other artists in this issue include Robert McCarty, Chuck Miller, Paul Reinman, George Tuska and Joe Maneely (cover). This is number 1 of 1 Cowboy Action issues with Baker art and/or covers and number 1 of 1 Cowboy Action issues with Williamson art and/or covers. Find >this issue or more >Baker, >Williamson or >Cowboy Action issues on ebay.
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"Billy the Kid" Baker story pencils and inks 4 pages = ****
"The Man-hunter" Williamson story pencils (Angelo Torres inks) 5 pages = ***

Al Williamson

Matt Baker
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Neal Adams
Deadly Hands of Kung Fu v1 #4, 1974 - Featuring the television show, "Kung Fu"photos and articles abound in this issue. Neal Adams also provides his own excellent portrayal of the actor David Carradine on the cover. His foreshortened hand snaps into position, reaching toward the viewer. Other artists in this issue include Don Perlin, Dan Adkins, Mike Vosburg and Al Milgrom. This is number 4 of 9 Deadly Hands of Kung Fu issues with Adams art and/or covers. Find >this issue or more >Adams or >Deadly Hands of Kung Fu issues on ebay.
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Adams cover pencils and inks = ***

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Marshall Rogers

Mr. Miracle v1 #23, 1977 - The tilted horizon on this Marshall Rogers cover is just enough to be disorienting. Note how the snake's body at the top follows the curvature of the masthead. Impeccably designed, Rogers displays an avid enthusiasm for this Jack Kirby character. Other artists in this issue include Michael Golden and Joe Giella. This is number 5 of 6 Mister Miracle issues with Rogers art and/or covers. Find >this issue or more >Rogers or >Mister Miracle issues on ebay.
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Rogers cover pencils and inks = ***

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Walt Disney Comics Digest v1 #5, 1968 - Regarded by some as Carl Barks' last comic book work (story and art), "The Dainty Daredevil"chronicles Daisy Duck's quest for find a job best suited to her talents. Reprinting comic book tales in digest form usually means a size reduction from the original intent. In this case, the artist seems to have drawn this story with the smaller page in mind. With only 3-4 panels per page, Barks shows no loss of skill or effort. "The Strange Shipwrecks", another Barks work, was reprinted from Uncle Scrooge #23. Other artists in this issue include Tony Strobl. This is number 1 of 1 Walt Disney Comics Digest issues with Barks art and/or covers (not including reprints). Find >this issue or more >Barks or >Walt Disney Comics Digest issues on ebay.
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"The Dainty Daredevil" Barks story pencils and inks 8 pages = ***

Carl Barks

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Bernie Wrightson
https://pencilink.blogspot.com/2013/07/master-list-of-firsts.html House of Mystery v1 #204, 1972 - Lost in the swamps, a young couple encounters a broken down shack with the oddest residents. Slimy and viscous, Bernie Wrightson's cover design sets the tone for his equally exceptional feature story. Drawn two years earlier, the work is disturbing yet beautiful. Character faces and figures are contorted into horrific displays against dark, ominous backdrops. This story was later reprinted in DC Special Blue Ribbon Digest #24. Alex Nino does nearly as well on his old European tale of a beautiful woman and her ardent suitor. His sharp layouts are both daring and contemporary in their design. Panels meld together, affecting pacing without losing clarity. This is Nino's first published work in American comics. Other artists in this issue include Win Mortimer. This is number 13 of 27 House of Mystery issues with Wrightson art and/or covers (not including reprints) and number 1 of 14 House of Mystery issues with Nino art and/or covers. Find >this issue or more >Nino, >Wrightson or >House of Mystery issues on ebay.
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Wrightson cover pencils and inks = ****
"All in the Family" Wrightson pencils and inks 9 pages = ****
"To Die for Magda" Nino story pencils and inks 10 pages = ***


Bernie Wrightson
Alex Nino
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Weird Science-Fantasy v3 #2, 1993 - Re-presenting the groundbreaking EC science fiction tales of the 1950s, this issue reprints all the stories from Weird Science-Fantasy #24 featuring art and covers by Al Williamson and Wally Wood. Other artists in this issue include Joe Orlando. Find >this issue, more >Williamson, >Wood or >Weird Science-Fantasy issues on ebay.

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Don Newton

Ghostly Tales v1 #115, 1975 - A giant snake emerges from the ruins, stopping an explorer in his tracks. Don Newton 's Indiana Jones-like cover is well executed with a relatively simple cover layout. The snake, figure, and stone steps all emit an eerie luminescence. Inside, Steve Ditko tells of an archeologist in search of an ancient Egyptian god. His linework is pervasive and impressive. There is increased interest and depth, particularly in key scenes and the revealing opening splash. Other artists in this issue include Tom Sutton and Pete Morisi. This is number 1 of 1 Ghostly Tales issues with Newton art and/or covers and number 51 of 61 Ghostly Tales issues with Ditko art and/or covers (not including reprints). Find >this issue or more >Ditko, >Newton or >Ghostly Tales comics on ebay.
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Newton painted cover = ***
"Wings of Death" Ditko story pencils and inks 9 pages = ***

Steve Ditko
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Alex Toth
All-American Comics v1 #92, 1948 - Kidnapped while still in his civilian identity, the Green Lantern is handed over to a would-be South American dictator by his foe the Icicle. In an early work for DC, Alex Toth shows more enthusiasm than skill. His layouts and drawings lack polish, but the level of detail is impressive. Toth's cover is a mirror image of the opening splash, presumably a way for the publisher to save money. This story was later reprinted in Green Lantern v2 #86. Other artists in this issue include Irwin Hasen and Al Smith. This is number 2 of 9 All-American Comics issues with Toth art and/or covers. Find >this issue or more >Toth or >All-American Comics issues on ebay.
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"The Icicle Goes South" Toth story pencils and inks 12 pages = **



Alex Toth

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Peter Parker, The Spectacular Spider-man v2 #28, 1979 - The robotic Tri-Man transforms himself into a flying bomb, prompting Spider-man to stop it at any cost. Daredevil also comes to his aid, depicted for the second time by artist Frank Miller. The artist's use of faded after-images on page 3 would become a recurring motif later on (particularly on Daredevil). Generally, his artwork lacks distinctiveness due to inexperience. Making matters worse, Frank Springer brings an unnecessarily rough finish to the original pencils. This story was later reprinted in Spider-man and Daredevil Special Edition #1. This is number 2 of 12 Spectacular Spider-man issues with Miller art and/or covers. Find >this issue or more >Miller or >Spectacular Spider-man issues on ebay.
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"Ashes to Ashes" Miller story pencils (Frank Springer inks) 18 pages = **

Frank Miller
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Brave and the Bold v1 #9, 1956 - Sighting a fire troll at sea, the village fisherman refuse to out again, despite the Viking Prince's urging. In both Joe Kubert's layouts and drawings, there is no lack of effort or detail. His linework and cross-hatching are masterful throughout. The fire troll in the opening splash  recedes into the background, perhaps due to a different medium (charcoal?). The technique effectively increases the scene's depth and is used no where else in subsequent pages. This story was later reprinted in >Best of Brave and the Bold #6. Other artists in this issue include Russ Heath and Irv Novick. Cover by Novick. This is number 9 of 33 Brave and the Bold issues with Kubert art and/or covers (not including reprints). Find >this issue or more >Kubert or >Brave and the Bold issues on ebay.
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"Peril of the Burning Sea" Kubert story pencils and inks 8 pages = ****

Joe Kubert
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