Thursday, November 13, 2003

Oh my God.

Thanks to Mark Evanier via ¡Journalista!, I have found something that I've looked for with a million Google searches: A Jerry Grandenetti website!

When I was at that impressionable stage of my childhood, when I first discovered that I could string together pencil lines in something that approximated the human figure mostly from copying Kirby and Ditko pages, there was another whose work I saw in Creepy and Eerie magazines, doing some really hallucinogenic-looking, highly expressionistic stuff, unlike anything I'd ever seen before. I wanted to try to draw like that, but I couldn't copy that stuff, no way. This artist's work came from somewhere else uniquely inside him. The artist's name was Jerry Grandenetti, a former Eisner assistant (I later learned) and I really loved his work not only on the Warren titles, but later as an illustrator for DC comics, especially on The Spectre. Of course, as time went by, his work grew less and less idiosyncratic and more lackluster, which reflects (I'm sure) DC's apathy towards his work as well as his own apathy at plugging away on such fare as The Green Team and Prez. Like Evanier says, he went into advertising and then into obscurity, a lot of it self-imposed. Our loss.

I've been hoping to see the man get his due for a long, long time now, and this website (which I haven't had the chance to explore as of yet) is a great first step. If you're reading, Mark, thanks for the informative spotlight on JG, and thanks for linking to that site!

Update Well, having looked the site over, I'm not disappointed, but I wish that there had been some examples of the work that kicked my ass so hard back in the day. Instead, all the art reproduced is stuff Grandenetti's been doing recently- some of it is outstanding and some of it is eh. But there are a couple of nice text pieces, including an informative biography, plus you can commission art from him! If I could only afford it I'd send the email right now. Maybe get him to do a Green Team, or even Uncle Creepy or Cousin Eerie.

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