Comic Art Friday: The best of 2009, day three

Time to unwrap the third of our seven Comic Art Year-End special editions, taking a fond glance back at the finest commissioned artworks to enter my collection in 2009.

So far, we’ve checked out four of the best new pieces in my Common Elements theme gallery. Today, we’ll see a couple of superstar turns in my other primary theme, Bombshells! This year, the Bombshells! series expanded by six, all of which are spectacular. I could have chosen any two to single out, and not have gotten the selection wrong. But I forced myself to choose just two.

Favorite Bombshells! Commission (Pencil Division):
“Victorious!”

Pencils by Steve Mannion

Miss Victory, pencils by comics artist Steve Mannion

In my never-humble opinion, Steve Mannion (creator of The Bomb and Fearless Dawn) is one of the great unsung talents in comics. His charming, timeless style deserves a far wider audience than it presently enjoys. His pinup of Golden Age heroine Miss Victory gives testimony to Steve’s unique ability to meld beauty and whimsy.

Favorite Bombshells! Commission (Ink Division):
“Patriot Games”

Pencils and inks by Greg LaRocque

Pat Patriot, pencils and inks by comics artist Greg LaRocque

This stunning Bombshell! impressed me so much that it’s been hanging in a place of prominence on my office wall since the day it arrived in the mail. It perfectly expresses a key reason why I enjoy the Bombshells! theme — resurrecting long-forgotten characters from the classic period of comics (in this case, Pat Patriot, one of the earliest red-white-and-blue heroines of the World War II era) for a modern viewership.

Okay, okay, I know I said I’d pick two. However…

Michael Dooney, one of my all-time favorite “good girl” artists, took two shots at the Bombshells! concept in 2009. I simply can’t conclude this retrospective without showcasing at least one of Mike’s two gorgeous drawings. Unfortunately, I love them both equally. So, I flipped a coin, and here’s your winner.

Favorite Bombshells! Commission (Dooney Division):
“Valhalla or Bust!”

Pencils by Michael Dooney

Valkyrie (Airboy character), pencils by comics artist Michael Dooney

Airboy’s sometime-nemesis, sometime-comrade Valkyrie meets the power, the passion, the excellence that is Dooney. Giving the former Axis spy the Spear of Destiny — you recall, I’m sure, the Third Reich’s fascination with supernatural artifacts — was a classic Dooney touch.

In tomorrow’s installment, we’ll look at this year’s outstanding commissions featuring two of my favorite characters.

And that’s your third chapter of Comic Art Year-End, 2009.

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One Comment on “Comic Art Friday: The best of 2009, day three”

  1. Damon Says:

    All of these are stunning. I’m so blown away by that Greg LaRocque piece, I’m gonna hafta send him an e-mail inquiring about his prices.


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