Book: Alex Ross, Chip Kidd «Mythology: The DC Comics Art of Alex Ross»

Mythology: The DC Comics Art of Alex Ross

Mythology returns, in a newly expanded paperback edition of the book Entertainment Weekly awarded a grade of A, saying: "Alex Ross brings to his work an unparalleled sense of the real. His heroes - both super and mortal - have weight; they exist in space, and that space is affected by them in ways never before seen on the page" . And so here they are, the incomparable cast of the DC Comics universe: Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, the Flash, Aquaman, the Green Lantern, and the rest of the Justice League as you've never seen them before. Mythology brings together the best loved comic characters in the world, brought to life by Alex Ross, one of the most astonishing young artists working in the medium today. The award-winning designer/writer Chip Kidd and photographer Geoff Spear have teamed up to create a book like no other, with an introduction by M. Night Shyamalan, the acclaimed director of The Village and The Sixth Sense. Ross has often been called the Norman Rockwell of comics,...

Издательство: "Pantheon" (2016)

ISBN: 9780375714627

Купить за 2076 руб на Озоне

Alex Ross

Infobox Comics creator

imagesize =
caption = Alex Ross
birthname = Nelson Alexander Ross
birthdate = birth date and age|1970|01|22
location = Portland, Oregon
deathdate =
deathplace =
nationality = American
area = Painter, Illustrator
alias =
notable works =
awards = Will Eisner Award (1997)
National Cartoonists Society Comic Book Award (1998)

Nelson Alexander "Alex" Ross (born January 22, 1970) is an American comic book painter, illustrator and plotter, acclaimed for the photorealism of his work. Ross is known for his love of the vintage looks of classic characters and the more mythic elements of the superheroes.

From the late 1990s, Ross has done much work for the industry’s two largest and most historically important publishing houses, Marvel and DC Comics, but Ross is also the co-creator of "Astro City", an original series that explores superhero mythology.

Although he is a prominent figure for both DC and Marvel, he is better known as a DC artist, as much of his work (such as "Kingdom Come") was created for DC. Due to the time and effort required to render his complex paintings, he is often hired to craft covers rather than interiors. Almost all of his Marvel work since 1994 has been as a plotter or cover artist.


Ross was born in Portland, Oregon, but grew up in Lubbock, Texas. His mother, Lynette C. Ross, was a commercial artist best known for her paper doll books. His father is a minister. From childhood, he wanted to work in comics. He was particularly influenced by George Pérez, Bernie Wrightson and Neal Adams. The telling facial expressions and realism of Adams’ work can be seen in much of Ross’. He was also interested in mainstream American painters such as Andrew Loomis, J. C. Leyendecker and especially Norman Rockwell. He was even influenced by his favorite band, Queen, specifically the cover to their second album, "Queen II", the composition of which, (black background, grouped figures with faces partially shadowed,) would go on to be used many times in Ross' work.

In 1987, Ross moved to Chicago to attend the American Academy of Art, where his mother had studied. His first published work was the five issue series, "" (1990), penned by Ron Fortier. Ross created all of the art, from pencils through coloring for the series. He performed similar work on a variety of titles over the next few years. In 1993, he completed his first painted superhero assignment, the cover of a Superman novel: .

During this time, Ross met writer Kurt Busiek and the two began submitting proposals for series that would feature paintings as their internal art, an unexplored idea at the time. Marvel agreed to a project that would tell much of the history of the Marvel Universe from the perspective of an ordinary person. That limited series, "Marvels," was released in 1994, and chronicled the life of a photojournalist, as he reacted to living in a world of superheroes and villains. Many fans were astonished by Ross’ uncannily realistic portrayals of Spider-Man, Captain America, The Fantastic Four, The X-Men, Silver Surfer, The Human Torch and others.

Busiek, Ross, and penciller Brent Anderson went on to create "Astro City," first published by Image Comics in 1995 and later by Homage Comics. The series features an original superhero world and continues the theme of "Marvels," exploring how ordinary people, and superheroes and villains too, react to a world where the fantastic is commonplace. Ross paints the covers and helps set the costumes and the general look and feel for the series, which has been published sporadically in recent years due to Busiek’s health problems.

In 1996, Ross teamed up with writer Mark Waid for the DC Comics limited series "Kingdom Come," which unveils a possible future for the DC universe, in which Superman and several other classic superheroes return from retirement to tame a generation of brutal anti-heroes. Ross redesigned several important superheroes, such as Superman, Batman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern, The Flash, Hawkman and Captain Marvel for the series. He also hid numerous visual references in his images, such as recognizable graffiti, objects and posters, and modeled Rev. Norman McCay, a minister who The Spectre appoints with judging who is responsible for a prophesized tragedy, on his own father, Clark Ross.

"Kingdom Come" helped cement Ross' place as a comic book industry superstar. He followed it with the risky "Uncle Sam," a non-superhero work. A project of DC’s Vertigo line, it was an experimental work that examined the dark side of American history. While not a sales success, the mini-series garnered favorable reviews from comic fans.

In the early 2000s, with writer Jim Krueger, Ross plotted and designed characters for a trilogy of Marvel limited series, "Earth X," "Universe X," and "Paradise X," which combined dozens of Marvel characters from various time periods in one galaxy-spanning epic. Alex Ross's decision to not paint the internal art hurt the series.

Ross has also been the subject of a minor controversy over his refusal to draw certain characters (most notably Kyle Rayner, who at the time of Ross' refusal was the Green Lantern).

Between 1998 and 2003, writer Paul Dini and Ross produced annual tabloid-sized editions celebrating the 60th anniversaries of DC Comics’ Superman ('Peace on Earth'), Batman ('War on Crime'), Shazam ('Power of Hope'), and Wonder Woman ('Spirit of Truth'), as well as two specials featuring the Justice League, 'Secret Origins' and 'Liberty and Justice'.

In 2001, Ross won acclaim for his work on special comic books benefiting the families of those killed in the September 11, 2001 attacks, including his portraits of paramedics, police and firefighters. He has also designed much DC merchandise, including posters, dinner plates, and statues.

In 2004, DC compiled the coffee table book "Mythology: The DC Comics Art of Alex Ross", written and designed by Chip Kidd. In late 2005, a paperback version of the book was published to include new artwork by Ross, including sketches for his "Justice" mini-series.

Also in 2004, Ross designed paintings for the opening credits of the film "Spider-Man 2". The paintings presented key elements from the first film, including a rendition of the classic upside-down kiss between Tobey Maguire and Kirsten Dunst.

In August 2005, Ross reunited with writer Jim Kreuger and penciller Doug Braithwaite to begin the epic 12-issue, bi-monthly limited series "Justice" for DC Comics. The series focuses on the enemies of the Justice League of America banding together to defeat the League.

After "Justice" he started on projects showcasing his love for Golden Age characters: "Project Superpowers" with Jim Krueger for Dynamite Entertainment. [ [ Ross! Krueger! Dynamite! "SUPERPOWERS!"] , July 18 2007, Comic Book Resources] and, starting in 2008, Ross launched "Avengers/Invaders" [comicbookdb|type=title|id=18419|title="Avengers/Invaders"] featuring Marvel characters but published by Dynamite Entertainment. The story will pit World War II versions of Captain America, Namor, and other classic war characters against the modern Avengers groups. He has not stated what will happen in the series, but he has stated the recent death of Captain America has improved the story, since it was conceived a year before his death. [ [ Interview: Alex Ross Returns to Marvel] , IGN, August 11, 2007] [ [ Ross' Return = "Avengers/Invaders"] , Comic Book Resources, August 14, 2007] [ [ Alex Ross Talks Avengers/Invaders] , Newsarama, August 14, 2007] He also collaborates on DC's Justice Society of America. Ross is also set to draw the covers of Dynamite Entertainment's comic book series featuring "The Phantom". He will also redesign the hero's costume.

During an interview in "Wizard Magazine" #167, Ross stated that his favorite Flash is Barry Allen, as he says that Barry Allen's character was "screwed".


DC Direct (the exclusive collectibles division of DC Comics) has produced 3 waves of action figures from the comics book Kingdom Come based on Alex Ross' artwork. The first wave of figures included Superman, Wonder Woman, Green Lantern and Hawkman. The second wave included Batman, Red Robin, Captain Marvel and Kid Flash. The last wave included Magog, Flash, Armored Wonder Woman and Deadman. An exclusive figure of Red Arrow was released through ToyFare magazine. DC Direct also released several other characters through their Elseworlds toylines. These figures included The Spectre, Norman McCay, Jade, Nightstar, Aquaman and Blue Beetle. Ross also designed the costume the current incarnation of Batwoman wears; this character has been released in action-figure form by DC Direct as part of its "52" line of toys.

DC Direct has also released a line of action figures for the comic book Justice based again on Alex Ross' artwork:

*Series 1: Bizzaro, Sinestro, Cheetah, Flash, Superman, Superman (Variant)

*Series 2: Aquaman, Batman, Black Canary, Black Manta, Parasite

*Series 3: Green Lantern, Joker, Plastic Man, Poison Ivy, Wonder Woman

*Series 4: Black Adam, Hawkman, Shazam!, Solomon Grundy, Zatanna

*Series 5: Brainiac, Green Arrow, Lex Luthor, Martian Manhunter, Martian Manhunter (Translucent), Red Tornado.

*Series 6: Batman Armored, Green Lantern Armored, Hawkgirl, Scarecrow.

*Series 7: Aquaman Armored, Gorilla Grodd, Green Lantern John Stewart, Superman Armored

*Series 8: Batgirl, Captain Cold, Supergirl, Toyman

Other media

*Alex Ross drew the cover picture on the Anthrax albums "We've Come for You All" and "Music of Mass Destruction".
*Had a notable feud with filmmaker Kevin Smith because Smith's film "Mallrats" seemed to imply that Stan Lee was the sole creator of the Marvel Universe. Ross stated that he feels that Jack Kirby should have half the credit. This feud was referenced in the DVD for "Mallrats".
*Had designed a series of costumes for the 2002 film "Spider-Man", but director Sam Raimi instead chose not to use Ross' outfits. Rather, many of the costumes were redesigned prior to filming. In the film's video game counterpart, as an easter egg, it is possible to unlock a playable version of Ross' Spider-Man design. When using this unlockable, the Green Goblin will also feature one of Ross' unused character outfits. As such, Ross was commissioned to do a series of drawings for the opening credits of "Spider-Man 2", which recapped the major events from the first film.
*Painted a picture of Ace and Gary, The Ambiguously Gay Duo in his trademark form.


His numerous awards include a 1997 Will Eisner Award for the limited series "Kingdom Come" (with Mark Waid) and a 1998 National Cartoonists Society Comic Book Award for "Superman: Peace on Earth".



*comicbookdb|type=creator|id=292|title=Alex Ross

Audio Interviews

* [ Around Comics] Interview on Around Comics 01/01/08

External links

* [ Alex Ross at]
* [ Comic Book Pros] , represents Alex Ross
* [ A video showcasing Alex Ross at work on the cover to JLA: Liberty and Justice]


* [ Interview at Alex Ross Art (1997)]
* [ Interview at The Jack Kirby Collector (1999)]
* [ Interview at FilmForce (2003)]

Источник: Alex Ross

Chip Kidd

Chip Kidd

Kidd at the New York Comic Convention in Manhattan, October 8, 2010.
Born Charles Kidd[1]
September 12, 1964 (1964-09-12) (age 47)
Reading, Pennsylvania, United States
Education Pennsylvania State University
Occupation Graphic designer, Writer
Notable credit(s) Jack Cole and Plastic Man: Forms Stretched to Their Limits,
The Cheese Monkeys,
The Learners,
Official website

Chip Kidd (born September 12, 1964)[2] is an American author, editor, and graphic designer, best known for his book covers.


Early life

Born in Reading, Pennsylvania, Kidd grew up in the Reading suburb of Shillington, strongly influenced by American popular culture. While a design student at Penn State, an art instructor once gave the assignment to design a book cover for Museums and Women by John Updike, also a Shillington native. The teacher panned Kidd's work in front of the class, suggesting that book design would not be a good career choice for him.[citation needed] Kidd later received professional assignments to design covers for Memories of the Ford Administration and other books by Updike.


Cover design

Kidd is currently associate art director at Knopf, an imprint of Random House. He first joined the Knopf design team in 1986, when he was hired as a junior assistant. Turning out jacket designs at an average of 75 a year, Kidd has freelanced for Doubleday, Farrar Straus & Giroux, Grove Press, HarperCollins, Penguin/Putnam, Scribner and Columbia University Press in addition to his work for Knopf. Kidd also supervises graphic novels at Pantheon, and in 2003 he collaborated with Art Spiegelman on a biography of cartoonist Jack Cole, Jack Cole and Plastic Man: Forms Stretched to Their Limits. His output includes cover concepts for books by Mark Beyer, Bret Easton Ellis, Haruki Murakami, Dean Koontz, Cormac McCarthy, Frank Miller, Michael Ondaatje, Alex Ross, Charles Schulz, Osamu Tezuka, David Sedaris, Donna Tartt, John Updike and others. His design for Michael Crichton's Jurassic Park novel was carried over into marketing for the film adaptation. Oliver Sacks and other authors have contract clauses stating that Kidd design their books.[3]

Kidd is currently working with writer Lisa Birnbach on True Prep, a follow-up to her 1980 book The Official Preppy Handbook.[4]

Publishers Weekly described his book jackets as "creepy, striking, sly, smart, unpredictable covers that make readers appreciate books as objects of art as well as literature."[5] USA Today also called him "the closest thing to a rock star"[6] in graphic design today, while author James Ellroy has called him “the world’s greatest book-jacket designer.”[7][8]

Kidd has often downplayed the importance of cover designs, stating, "I'm very much against the idea that the cover will sell the book. Marketing departments of publishing houses tend to latch onto this concept and they can't let go. But it's about whether the book itself really connects with the public, and the cover is only a small part of that." He is also known to be humorously self-deprecating in regards to his work with statements such as "I piggy-backed my career on the backs of authors, not the other way around. The latest example of that is The Road, by Cormac McCarthy. I'm lucky to be attached to that. Cormac McCarthy is not lucky to have me doing his cover."[3]

Collectors and librarians note that The Secret History, which Mr. Kidd wrapped in a translucent acetate overlay, ultimately has not survived the test of time, as copies show that the corners and edges of the covers persistently curl up and do not maintain their pristine condition.[citation needed]

Kidd is as a fan of comic book media, particularly Batman, and has written and designed book covers for several DC Comics publications, including The Complete History of Batman, Superman, and Wonder Woman, The Golden Age of DC Comics: 365 Days, and the aforementioned Jack Cole and Plastic Man. He also designed Mythology: The DC Comics Art of Alex Ross and wrote an exclusive Batman/Superman story illustrated by Ross for the book. Kidd once stated that the first cover he ever noticed was "no doubt for some sort of Batman comic I saw when I was about 3, enough said. Or maybe not enough said: the colors, the forms, the design. Batman himself is such a brilliant design solution." Veronique Vienne, who wrote an eponymous book about Kidd in 2006, described Kidd's Batman fandom as a "childhood obsession and lasting adult passion."[9]


His first novel, The Cheese Monkeys, (Simon and Schuster, 2001) is an academic satire and coming-of-age tale about state college art students who struggle to meet the demands of a sadistic graphic design instructor. The book draws on Kidd's real-life experiences during his art studies at Penn State.

Kidd's second novel, The Learners, finds the protagonist of The Cheese Monkeys drawn into the infamous Milgram experiment, thanks to an incidental newspaper ad assignment. The novel uses the experiment as an extended metaphor for advertising, wherein the "content" is masked and fed — sometimes unwillingly — to its consumers.[10]

It was announced at New York Comic-Con 2011 that Kidd would be writing Batman: Death By Design, an original graphic novel.[11]


In early 2008, Kidd started a new wave/alternative rock band, writing and recording music under the name Artbreak. He takes the role of song writing, vocals, and percussion, and while the group began as hobby, Kidd has expressed interest in making a serious project out of it.[12] As of 2008, the group performs across the United States and has a tour schedule on their MySpace. They plan to record their original songs for an album entitled Wonderground.


In 2010, Kidd collaborated with the writing staff of the animated series Batman: The Brave and the Bold on the episode "Bat-Mite Presents: Batman's Strangest Cases!" The episode contained a segment that was heavily inspired by the Batman manga from the 1960's.[13]

Personal life

Kidd lives on Manhattan's Upper East Side.[14] A biographical survey, Chip Kidd by Veronique Vienne (Yale University Press, 2003), was followed by Chip Kidd: Book One, Work: 1986–2006 (Rizzoli, 2005), curated and designed by Mark Melnick with text by Kidd.

The author is also a serious collector of Batman merchandise which fills his Manhattan apartment. In 2001, Kidd designed and wrote Batman: Collected which features his childhood photos and several pieces from his vintage Batman collection as photographed by Geoff Spear. In the 287-page book, he writes extensively of his nostalgic memories and of Batman as a merchandising icon.[15] Kidd also worked with fellow Batman collector Saul Ferris on another book of a more particular subject matter, Bat-Manga!: The Secret History of Batman in Japan, which hit stores shelves in October 2008.[16][17]


  1. ^ Gordon, Amanda. "Out and about: A Chipper Launch For Chip Kidd," New York Sun (Feb. 21, 2008). Accessed Sept. 18, 2008,.
  2. ^ Chip Kidd Bio Retrieved April 2, 2008.
  3. ^ a b Somaiya, Ravi "Warning: graphic material" (Nov. 4, 2007). Retrieved on April 2, 2008.
  4. ^ Rich Motoko "Rejoice, Muffy and Biff: A Preppy Primer Revisited", The New York Times (April 3, 2010). Retrieved on April 3, 2010.
  5. ^ Chip Kidd: Book One: Work: 1986-2006 Barnes & Noble (November 1, 2005). Retrieved on April 2, 2008.
  6. ^ Minzesheimer, Bob (2003-09-03), "Chip Kidd, book cover designer, unmasked ; Prolific artist is on the front of a new book -- about him", USA Today 
  7. ^ Heer, Jeet (2003-09-18), "In his good books: Asking us to both see and read, Chip Kidd's book jackets contain the essence of comics", National Post 
  8. ^ Heer, Jeet. "Chip Kidd" National Post (September 12, 2003)
  9. ^ Minzesheimer, Bob "Chip Kidd, book cover designer, unmasked" USA Today (September 3, 2003). Retrieved on April 1, 2008.
  10. ^ "Hot Chip". CBC News. 
  11. ^
  12. ^ Eberhart, John Mark "Author/designer Chip Kidd has a new novel and a long resume of impressive artwork" (February 27, 2008). Retrieved April 2, 2008.
  13. ^ "Learn how Superman, Wonder Woman and Scooby Doo will appear on Batman: The Brave and the Bold!". 2010-09-16. Retrieved 2011-01-04. 
  14. ^ Kennedy, Sean (2005-11-22), "Kidd dynamite: the first collection of book jackets by Chip Kidd prompts the question "would there be books without him?" An exclusive talk with the out designer.", The Advocate, archived from the original on February 24, 2006,, retrieved 2008-01-24 [dead link]
  15. ^ Batman Collected (Paperback) Retrieved on April 1, 2008.
  16. ^ Bat-Manga!: The Secret History of Batman in Japan (Hardcover) (2008). Retrieved April 2, 2008.
  17. ^ Aoki, Deb Interview: Chip Kidd and Saul Ferris Manga. (February 2008) Retrieved on April 2, 2008.


Further reading

  • Forward by Chip Kidd to Just my Type by Simon Garfield, Profile Books, 2010

External links


Источник: Chip Kidd

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