Sunday, October 16, 2011

Everett Raymond Kinstler, artist

Master Strokes

In my scrap file, under "Pen and Ink," I found these two tear sheets of illustrations by master penman Everett Raymond Kinstler. The first is the inside front cover from an issue of Avon's Prison Break comic book.
The other is from some digest-size fantasy pulp...probably also published by Avon.Everyone knows that Kinstler left comics to become a renowned portrait painter. I'm sure the money was much better. Still it's a shame that when he started painting he stopped producing these incredible pen-and-ink drawings. The inside front covers of Avon comics were the ideal place for Kinstler to strut his stuff. Slick paper meant precise reproduction of his linework, while the montage format let him go wild with elaborately-rendered heads...
...and swirling action scenes.Looking closely at these drawings one is amazed by the apparent haste with which they were inked. The hook-shaped ends of Kinstler's strokes make them look like sketch strokes banged down at furious speed. Yet so precise is Kinstler's control that the drawings never look slapdash.Kinstler learned many of his licks from his friend and mentor, James Montgomery Flagg. To Flagg's classic turn-of-the-century penwork he added more elaborate rendering and a wild sense of drama. I offer this gallery of Kinstler IFC's from Avon comics for your enjoyment--and amazement.

ERK tackles child endangerment:
Kinstler ventures into horror-host country:
A bravura display of Kinstler's ability to build mood:A nice clinch with a dollop of history:And to wrap things up, the best drawing of Broderick Crawford ever (not a bad Barbara Hale, either).
Sidebar: Did you notice that several of these pages were lettered by Wallace Wood?

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