Alan Corbett: Art Picks
Creator Art Picks, where we ask comic creators about the comics and artists they like and that influence them. Alan Corbett is an illustrator and comic creator from Cork. His works include The Ghost of Shandon and the upcoming Vampire King of Munster. He also had a story in the I’m Awake, I’m Alive anthology and was art editor on The Cork Horror and Sci-Fi comics.
Who was the first artist you took notice of when getting into comics, that made you realize it was someone’s job to draw or just made you aware of creators?
I grew up reading a lot of British comics like Topper and Beano and European kids comics like Tintin and Asterix. I remember fondly Saturday afternoons spent in Mayfield Library in Cork, reading their catalogue of Asterix comics and I absolutely loved the character designs and world building that Albert Uderzo illustrated. He would be the first comic artist that stood out to me.
Do you have a biggest influence or favourite artist, one that’s maybe affected your style or storytelling more than others?
When I was studying graphic design in Cork IT, I came across the illustration work of Ben Templesmith in comics like Criminal Macabre and 30 Days of Night. His illustration process had a big influence on my own art technique. I remember reading how Templesmith combined his fine art skills and his own graphic design schooling to create his own unique illustration style. It was a process I tried to develop myself to create my own unique illustration style. Combining traditional art techniques and creative software like photoshop and illustrator.
Do you have a favourite artistic run on a series, or simply a love of the way one artist draws a certain character or team?
I absolutely love the art of Jeff Lemire in his sci-fi story Trillium. Lemire is a fantastic writer, I loved his run on Green Arrow, but his art is equally as good. Its very emotive and atmospheric. The line work is expressive and it brings the comic to life. I love picking up a comic and seeing artwork that is fresh and new. When I first picked up Trillium I was just blown away.
Do you have a specific favourite page or sequence from an artist?
The first page of All Star Superman by Frank Quitely is absolute genius. I love how in 4 panels, Quitely has given us an awesome insight into the destruction of Krypton, Jor-El’s despair and hope, the epic travel through space and the eventual discovery of Kal-El by the Kent’s on planet Earth. It captures the epic resonance of Superman’s back story in just 4 panels.
What’s your favourite comic book cover?
I love the artwork of Ashley Wood and I think this Zombies vs Robots cover is pure class. Wood has a very expressive painterly illustration style and I love the atmosphere he creates in his work. The cover depicts ravenous zombies clambering up the legs if a giant robot. It just oozes awesomeness. I also love the rebellious tag line ‘From the Eisner Award Losing Team’
Who’s your favourite artist right now?
My favourite comic artist hasn’t changed in the past 20 years and that’s Alex Ross. Nobody can compete with his ultra realistic painterly comic illustrations. Kingdom Come is one of my all time favourite books and Ill never forget picking it up for the first time. It just looked absolutely light years ahead of any other comic I had ever picked up.
Is there a current underrated artist or up and coming one you’d like to highlight?
Well Im heavily involved in the local comic scene here in Cork so Id like to highlight the illustration work of a fellow Corkman, Damien Duncan. He is an excellent draftsman and has a strong understanding of anatomy and perspective. Here is a page he did for the Cork Horror Comic last year.
Questions by Chris O’Halloran