The Great Debate

Greetings from the desert fellow CBSI members! I trust everyone had a memorable Thanksgiving. There are many quirks about comics that make us scratch our heads. This is especially true now in the “Covers before story”, or “Outside not inside” buying process we live in with today’s flavor of the week. Pop quiz…Can anyone correctly answer why Alex Ross covers do not get more love in the secondary market? Print runs on his variant books may play a part yes, but what else? Is it just as simple as his superior art has become vanilla? Like the NES games of the 80s, Yankees of the late 90s, LOTR movies of the early 00s, and Gal Gadot’s of current, alright there is only ONE of her, but you get the picture! Has Ross’ work suffered a similar fate and it’s just come to be expected? None of us will know the answer in totality, but it will be debated in barber shops for years.

 

The Great Debate

 

In honor of Mr Ross, we are going to specifically view a bit of his Marvel work for this piece – DC and others will be soon I promise! However, first let’s look at his process and how he captures such lifelike qualities in his art. This was taken from an interview from WTTW News, and does a great job of capturing how his mind works in terms of capturing art.

 

 

Pretty cool huh? Alex and his attention to detail is superb! I don’t think there is anyone that does a group shot better than this man. He is a clinic on fine art. Alright, here is the All New, All Different Avengers run from Alex’s portfolio. It’s does a good job of highlighting his strengths including emotion, detail, and multiple interactions throughout the cover.

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 1

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 1 1:200 Sketch

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 1 Variant

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 1 1:200 Sketch

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 2

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 3

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 4

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 4 1:50 Variant

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 5

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 6

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 7

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 8

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 9

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 9 1:50 Variant

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 10

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 11

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 12

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 13

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 14

 

All New, All Different Avengers # 15

 

Bonus Section

 

Midnight Sons Unlimited Vol 1 # 9

 

Torch Vol 1 # 6

 

Vengeance of the Moon Knight # 1 Variant

 

Infamous Iron Man Vol 1 # 11

 

Wow! There is some amazing covers in that group. Another feather in Alex’s cap is he can draw any character. He really has no weaknesses, nor will he shy away from controversial subject matter. I keep going back to the “Devil in the details” way Mr. Ross captures his art. As seen above, this starts at the very beginning of a project.

Perhaps someday, his covers will get the credit they are deserved. This includes on the secondary market as well. With greatness comes expectations that are at times unable to met. Alex Ross has done some brilliant work on covers over the years. Let’s not cast this aside as lesser monetary valued books due to print runs regardless of ratio.

I will leave you with a photo of Alex reading a illustration book of previously unreleased work by one of his biggest influences, Andrew Loomis. He was another underappreciated artist of his time. The talent between those two alone is unprecedented.

 

 

Talk soon,

 

 

 

 

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