Monday, May 10, 2010
Artists I Admire: Frank Frazetta
Frank Frazetta died of a stroke today. And it is strange because I am more sad than I thought that I would be. I'm not depressed by any means. But I just didn't imagine that his death would affect me at all. So to feel this kind of pang of sadness is surprising.
I always liked Frank Frazetta's art. I thought his Conan was unparalleled and his Death Dealer was an inspired design. His environments were super moody and ominous. I liked that he drew women with big butts... but it wasn't off putting like R. Crumb's women with big butts.
Then I saw a movie called "Frank Frazetta: Painting with Fire" when I was exposed to more of his work. Aside from all of the fantasy stuff he painted, he also drew a lot more straight-forward comic book work. I particularly enjoyed his Western work. But that wasn't the big thing that I took away from this movie.
The whole movie they talk about how Frazetta is a natural artist. How he has almost perfect recall of his own visual library. How if he needed to draw a rabbit, he just sat there for a second thinking... then would proceed to draw out a perfect rabbit. Then, they talked about how he had a stroke so severe that he lost use of his right hand. His drawing hand. This is a terrifying thought to any artist. But, Frank Frazetta learned to draw with this left hand. And some say that he drew BETTER with his left than with his right.