WHAT? A NEW CONTROVERSY? (see below and weigh in with your opinion)
- Note: The information in this post has been proven to be innaccurate because of false information published in a bootleg publication that was believed by me to be legitimate. Thanks to knowledgable readers and their helpful comments, the information has been conclusively discredited. I leave the rest of the original post to illustrate how controversies can be developed, and how people with knowledge sharing information respectfully can bring resolution to such controversies. -
Over the past several months, while I have been 'away', several giants of comic book illustration have passed from our midsts into the great beyond. Among these artistic giants was Frank Frazetta. You can see my initial tribute to Mr. Frazetta over at Black 'N' White And Red All Over.
Here I present to you some apparently little known or perhaps overlooked information regarding Frazetta's very first published oil painting. Of course as every serious art fan knows, Frank Frazetta is well known for (among other things) his amazing oil painting covers for the CONAN and TARZAN paperback books published in the 60's and 70's, as well as several Warren covers. What every serious art fan does not know, as evidenced by the Grand Comic Book Database (or GCD), is the fact that his very first published oil painting was done for Avon Comics in July of 1950 for WILD BILL HICKOK comics.
As presented by the GCD, the above cover art was by artist Harold Winfield Scott(click here to see GCD's entry). That is erroneous. I am here to set the record straight, using Frank Frazetta's own records.
This painting was done fairly early in Frazetta's career, before he began the habit of demanding the rights to keep his original paintings after publication. Where the original painting is now is unknown, and the records to indicate authorship are incomplete. Therefore the attribution by the GCD to Harold Winfield Scott was made as an educated guess by art experts, at first a mere suggestion and now widely accepted as a fact.
As comic book enthusiasts know, the GCD is an indispensable tool and are to be praised for all their efforts to catalogue every legitimate comic book every published, which is an almost impossibly daunting task indeed. One cannot fault them for displaying occasional false information, and they themselves ask for help from the public in clarifying some of these questionable entries. After I post this, I will contact them with the correct information. I encourage every comic book fan who has knowledge that can fill in the blank spaces over at GCD to please inform them of the correct information, so true facts will not be lost to history as time goes by.
My proof for the validity of Frazetta's authorship of the painting in question comes from Frank Frazetta's own records, as listed by him in his own publication, THE FRAZETTA TREASURY(1975), which includes Frank's own checklist of his work up to that point in his career. The checklist in that volume is hand-typed, most likely by Ellie Frazetta and verified by Frank himself, and on page 5 of the list is the entry:
WILD BILL HICKOK (Avon)
# 4 Cover [First published painting]
Beside the written entry, there is also a full page which reprints the cover in black and white, with the words underneath,
FIRST PUBLISHED PAINTING.
So it is Frank Frazetta himself claiming that the painting is his.
This revelation should be of importance to comic book/art historians, as well as comic book collectors. Anyone possessing this comic book (such as myself) should immediately reassess the value of WILD BILL HICKOK # 4, as it is a collector's item.
(I will consider any offers for this comic, if any collectors are interested in acquiring it.)
Since posting this and other Frazetta material on Black 'N' White And Red All Over,
two readers have informed me that there is controversy surrounding the authenticity of THE FRAZETTA TREASURY. One of the people saying so is none other than Mr. Door Tree, art historian and the provider of the excellent GOLDEN AGE COMIC BOOK STORIES, whose personal knowledge regarding Frazetta is more extensive than my own, and therefore I must report that this post is not definitive, and any information contained in THE FRAZETTA TREASURY, as accurate as it appears, may not be 100% accurate after all. If the information wasn't coming from him, I might still not be convinced, but I am convinced of his knowledge of such facts. Now I welcome any comments, information, or opinions on this apparent controversy. Just leave your comment below. Thank you!
- THE APOCOLYTE Speaks
Finally, one last bit...
After contacting the GCD, their investigation, though hardly extensive, resulted in them sending me this link to a comic thread...you tell me, is this proof of the inauthenticity, or merely hearsay? http://boards.collectors-society.com/ubbthreads.php?ubb=showflat&Number=3279160
GCD did say they would at the least consider printing a small bit expressing the possible spurious information of The Frazetta Treasury.
Now I ask all of you - WHAT DO YOU THINK? ___________
Alright, alright! I'll shut up now!
The controversy is over!
Here is the undeniable proof, as provided by the very knowledgable Daniel (of An OEconomist.com), who provided the link to this image of the original cover art which appeared on a 1947 issue of SPEED WESTERN magazine (see comments below). Thank you to Daniel, and of course to Mr. Door Tree at the always amazing Golden Age Comic Book Stories for his invaluable insights.
image from "A Message From The Editor/Publisher - Allen Freeman", SLAM BANG Comics #2
artwork by Michael Wurl -copyright 2006
Hello, comic lovers!
I am almost ready to begin re-posting here.
Usually I like to keep things light and avoid deep personal issues, but I need to take a moment and explain why there haven't been any posts for the past several months, and where I've been for so long.
For anyone who cares, I didn't forget about you or abandon you, but the truth is I was the victim of cyber terrorism which destroyed my computer and has played havoc with my personal life as well as my income for the past several months. That is why I haven't been able to post anything for nearly a year.
To anyone who fancies themselves a computer hacker, go get a real job and stop destroying peoples work. The fact is I have a family and an elderly father who depend on me to take care of them, and when you attack my computer and my personal work, you are attacking and hurting not only me, but several people who depend on me. Life is hard enough nowadays.
Not only did these cyber-schmucks ruin my life for the past year, but they prevented all of you wonderful folks from enjoying the posts I had prepared. For that alone, I am angry at these spoiled cyber-creeps. So, you break-a my computer, I break-a you face! Go find a real hobby instead of destroying what someone else created...
Well, I'm back, and starting from scratch once again. Please be patient as I begin to re-scan all my stories and then soon enough I'll be posting with regularity.
Though I had never intended to do so, I will be setting up a PayPal link here and on my other blogs so that anyone who wishes to may offer donations, and I again say that I must do so as a real neccesity at this point. If you enjoy this blog, or any of my other blogs, please consider a gift of any size if you are able. I thank you for considering this, and I and my family thank you for your viewership and support. The link is on the right near the top - Please click on the PayPal / Donate button (you don't need a PayPal account). I am grateful for any amount you can manage. Thank you again.
Welcome! Here we will explore the wonderful world of Comic Books. A comic book can enjoyed by anyone, young and old alike, and for many different reasons -- you may be captivated by the story, the art, or both. There have been so many different kinds of comic books, and here we hope to celebrate all of them in one way or another. Together we can pull back the curtain and look at some of the legendary artists and writers, the comic book creators who have contributed to the art form over the last seven decades. We may look back even farther. You won't find the latest comic book news here, but you will find insights, information, and some of the greatest stories and art from some of the world's best comics.
There are many great comics blogs and bloggers out there, and we all love great comics! Therefore, it is natural that once in a while more than one blogger may post the same comic story. In the inevitable case that I may post a comic story or scan that has been posted elsewhere, let me state that it is not my intention to step on anyone's toes. If I feel a comic or a story is worthy of presenting, I will post it here. I do go out of my way to try and see if a certain comic I want to post has been posted somewhere else already, and if it has, I generally do not post it here. If a lot of time has passed, I am more inclined to post a duplication. I definitely promise that I do not take scans from other bloggers posts to use as my own - the stories I post here are my own scans and my own collection, and the words written on this blog are entirely my own (unless noted). In this digital age some of my present collection is now digital scans and not hard-copies of comics, though many are my own actual comic. Some scans are donated to me. When I began blogging comics I asked another well-known comics blogger if he would mind if I posted a story that I liked even though he had already posted the same story before. He told me, "Go ahead and post it. If it was worth posting once, it was worth posting again." I thought those were wise words, and I still believe that now. So, to the comics blogging community, let us post what we want and enjoy each others vision and point of view, without malice. If we happen to post the same story by coincidence, so be it. If you see something here and you want to post it, all I ask is give credit where it is due. We all share one thing - WE LOVE COMICS!
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ALL COMIC SCANS ARE SHARED FROM MY PERSONAL COMIC BOOK COLLECTION, OR DONATED GENEROUSLY BY COLLECTORS, UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED. ALL IMAGES PRESENTED HERE ARE OFFERED AS A CELEBRATION OF THE TALENTED ARTISTS, WRITERS, AND CREATORS OF THE ARTFORM, AND WITH ALL DUE RESPECT TO THE RIGHTFUL OWNERS. IT IS WITH THE BELIEF THAT THESE TREASURES DESERVE TO BE HONORED, LOVED, SHARED, AND ENJOYED, AND WITH THAT GOAL IN MIND, IN CONJUNCTION WITH COMIC BOOK LOVERS EVERYWHERE, THAT I THEREFORE OFFER THIS SERVICE FREE OF CHARGE. ALL IMAGES ARE OWNED AND COPYRIGHTED 2014 BY THE RESPECTIVE HOLDERS, AND ARE PRESENTED HERE FOR EDUCATIONAL PURPOSES WITHIN THE "FAIR USE" TERMS OF US CODE: TITLE 17, SEC. 107.