Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Steve Ditko, comic artist legend, turns 84 today

A very Happy Birthday to Steve Ditko, the great comic book creator who's creations/co-creations include Spider-Man, Dr. Strange, The Creeper, Hawk & Dove and Mr. A., among many others.

Here's some artwork I did that was featured recently on the back cover of DITKOMANIA #85, the fanzine dedicated to the work of Steve Ditko. That issue featured stories on Ditko's work for black & white magazines, and one of the stories he did for EERIE Magazine that I wanted to pay homage to was one called 'The Fly':

Ditko's career began in 1953, and almost 60 years later, the man is still producing new work! Published under the Robin Snyder/Steve Ditko banner, his latest book was just released:

This is his 14th new comic book released in the last 3 years, so Steve Ditko still has some stories to tell. This one features another chapter in the saga of Miss Eerie, and also introduces The Distorter, a character who never once appears in the actual story (unless you count a trail of energy an appearance!) but you still see the results of his/her/it's crime fighting abilities.

In addition to his singularly imaginative artwork and storytelling, what's specifically appealed to me, as a self-published comics creator, about Ditko's work is his reliance for the last 20 years or so on creating his work for himself, without the editorial oversight or worse, marketing input, of any third parties. He's creating pure art at this point, and he leaves it up to others to decide the merits of that choice. His desire is to create personal work and release it to the marketplace, no other considerations come into play. I'm not saying I have the exact same mindset, but his example is one that inspires me tremendously often keeps me going in this crazy comics business.

Ordering info for Ditko's new books is available at the DitkoComics Blog. To order DITKOMANIA, visit the Ditko-Fever site. Bleeding Cool.Com, a comics news site, has a nice gallery of original Ditko comic book pages you might be interested in checking out.

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