Thursday, February 28, 2013

Gene Colan pencils, Detective#523 gallery

Hi, this was scanned from photocopies sent to me by DC Comics in around 1986, I think, in order to entice me to ink this Gene Colan Batman story. One page is missing here, and page one was redrawn, I assume at the editor's request.
I grew up reading and loving Gene's work on Daredevil, and all the other stuff he did at Marvel, so I turned this assignment down with much regret. I just didn't have the time to ink it, and figured I would always get another chance to ink a childhood favorite of mine! Well, it never happened, with the sole exception of a commission I did via light-box, in the early 2000's. 
The thing to remember when studying these pencils, is that there is a lot to interpret, as an inker, here. You could ink it exactly as drawn, but would have to interpret areas where gene indicates tone, not solid black. This is where many inkers went astray on his work, and why guys like Tom Palmer, Klaus Janson, and Dick Giordano, to name a few, excelled on his pencils. They used varying techniques such as dot patterned films, or lines the approximate the grey tones on the pencils.

Batman and all related characters are trademark and copyright 2013 by DC Entertainment. Used here for educational purposes only, no reproduction is allowed without permission.


Terry Beatty said...

Too bad you didn't get to ink this -- I'm sure it would've been fantastic. That said -- I would've loved a shot at this, too!

Graeme said...

Tony DeZungia did it in the end. He wasn't a bad inker for Colan, though not the best, but I must confess I would have loved to have seen what you did with him, Jerry.

As ever, Colan really works best in pencils. I loved Nathaniel Dusk, the detective series Colan did with Don McGregor, which was shot from Colan's pencils for that reason.

Tom Mandrake said...

These are great! Put me down as another guy who always wanted to work with Colan and never had the chance.

Unknown said...

Merciful Zeus! His pencils always leave me wanting to learn to draw better. Tom Mandrake, I'd have very much liked to have seen you ink him--I think you would have 'gotten' his pencils as only a handful of inkers have. Having just finally gotten hold of 'X-Files/30 Days of Night' crossover, I'm certain it would have killed.

Shazamaholic said...

Gene was my favorite Batman artist of the 1980s. Seeing what DC is currently doing, I really really miss those days.

Mike Mikulovsky said...

Hey Jer
I was lucky enough to get to know. As well as meet & be friends with Gene from 1999-mid 2000's. I'll never forget getting calls from Gene. Especially once at 11:15 pm! I was working super late as a mover.

When my cell phone rang. thinking who could be calling me at this hour. Only to be shocked it was Gene"The Dean" Colan! Saying he was sorry so late for getting on my commission! Which it had only been two weeks. I was thinking it might be 6 months before he even got started on it.

I was just greatful he was willing to do it. So happy you atleast got to light box/ink me a version. After Tom Palmer also had inked the original. Never thought as a boy/teenager.I'd one day be friends with some of the old Marvel Bullpeners! Nuff Said!

Unknown said...

Hello Jerry,old school fan boy here,wondering if you would do a recreation of Deadshot (zeck) cover anyone your choice for me ,how much do you charge?