Friday, 10 June 2016

Asbury & Burns - June 10th 1977

The comic strip panels that I most chose to cut out and stick in my teenage diary came from Look-In, which was the only comic with full colour painted artwork, printed on glossy paper. Sure the Marvel reprints had glossy colour covers, but Look-In would feature two double-page action strips and a single page humour strip, along with another half dozen black & white strips, all of the highest possible quality of art, every week.

Harry North, Mike Noble, Arthur Ranson and Bill Titcombe were among the other artists wrapped in a painted cover by Arnaldo Putzu, who'd previously been most famous for the Carry On movie posters. And above we see two of my favourites, Martin Asbury - doing the Six Million Dollar Man - and John M Burns - doing The Bionic Woman.

John is still working, drawing regularly for 2000AD and is still at the top of his game, the grand master of painted comic strip artwork. His draughtsmanship is unequalled, and his stylistic flourishes constantly imaginative. I learned (and long ago forgot) everything I ever knew about drawing the folds in clothing from copying John M Burns.

Martin Asbury, no fool he, made the sensible and lucrative move into storyboarding movies, working on 7 James Bond movies from Goldeneye to Skyfall, as well as two Harry Potter films and Labyrinth.

My Records For The Day today straddled the fine line between quaint and naff. I'd clearly misheard the Alessi Brothers, but the far less memorable Gene Cotton was getting mentioned for the second time.

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