Thursday, December 8, 2011

Jerry Robinson, 1922-2011

Jerry Robinson passed away in his sleep last night, just over 3 weeks shy of his 90th birthday.  As soon as I'm not quite so busy making funnybook, I'll post more words and pictures, but for now here's some placeholder, an all-Robinson page from Steranko's History of Comics v1.


What I love about Robinson, (and Meskin for that matter) is that his work is fast and loose with a killer design sense and top-notch storytelling.  They both were obviously aware of what Kirby was doing, but theirs was a more impressionistic approach, and though it was less explosive (not always by much) the design was more sophisticated and got more so as the years passed.  By  the time Jerry and Mort were working together in 1946 things got more structured and the deep space was brilliantly realized- they were conquering ground together that nobody in funnybooks could touch.
I would give my eyeteeth to pull off the awesome that they were capable of just past the dawn of comics.  The energy of kids treading new ground, the skillset honed by a few years of doing the work- I don't have any intention of making retro-golden age art, but I can't imagine there's a better well to draw from.  BECAUSE THERE'S NOT.
In a time when half the folks drawing comics wanted to be Caniff, Raymond or Foster, Robinson, with Meskin at his side, blazed his own trail.  Sure, there's Sickles in the landscapes, there's Kirby in the dynamics, but nobody's ever gonna mistake Robinson or Meskin for anyone else.


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