Friday, February 11, 2011

Harold Edge

You know, it occurs to me that a lot of the comic creators that get talked about during Black History Month are the same ones everyone always chats about during Black History Month. Herriman, Ormes, McDuffie, McGruder, etc. I'm guilty of that to some degree myself. It's a lot easier to talk about a creator when there's already been a lot written about them. And to be fair, a lot of those creators that do get repeatedly brought up did some really awesome things and are worth talking about.

But, today, let me call your attention to someone who's perhaps not as well known: Harold Edge. Edge is a 33-year-old artist working out of Yonkers, currently drawing Dynagirl for Red Handed Studios. His first professional comic was Sixgun Samurai for Alias in 2005. He went on to draw Fallen Justice for which he was nominated for the Project Fanboy Best Independent Artist award in 2009.

Although Edge has been drawing a lot of superheroes the past few years, his character designs don't follow after many typical conventions of the genre. Not so much with the basic costumes themselves -- they still have capes and chest emblems and all that -- but the way Edge draws them, they're often ill-fitting and dropped on differently proportioned body types. Very few characters look like they the perfectly toned guardians of justice that we've come to expect in comics.
Usually most women [in comics] are thin and slightly muscular. I always wanted to see a thick or husky woman getting the job done. "Meaty" woman win my heart time and time again. Needless to say DynaGirl isn't bony at all, she has a thick physique but isn't fat; there's a big difference.
Edge doesn't have an easy way to describe his illustration style. Something between anime and American animation. Which points to his interest in movement. He doesn't just draw characters posing; they have a dynamism about them like they're always doing something even when they're standing still. Though his actual illustration style and design sense seem to have little obvious comparison, it's a technique that comic greats like Jack Kirby and John Romita Sr. always adhered to. They felt (rightly so, in my opinion) that a comic is much more interesting and compelling when the characters are doing something.

Edge may not be as well-known as Herriman or McGruder, but he's a very talented artist and worth keeping an eye on. I've only really studied his work on Dynagirl so far (hopefully, a situation I'll correct soon) but even within that, he's shown a range of abilities, handling major fight scenes and quiet, personal moments with equal skill and aplomb. Keep an eye on this guy!

2 comments:

Matt K said...

I remember you posting on Dynagirl once. I think it was the first time I ever encountered the word "zaftig..."

In the category of Black History Month and under-the-radar comic creators, may I give a mention to Sterling Clark? I met him at MidOhioCon before last, and he sold me on a couple of books of his Ntombinde: The Girl Who Loves Danger strip. Cool stuff; his image of the spider god Anansi is very awesome and fun.

http://ntombinde.com/

If U doubt me I will grow stronger said...

I don't know what to say. I'm literally speechless. I'm so pleased you enjoy my work to the degree you've expressed. I'm glad to see that more people than just myself enjoy "Meaty" women. I've just recently gotten into a lot of conversations about the body type I choose to draw my woman in. Oddly enough more women enjoy them than men do. In this day and age I don't understand why that is but I was starting to think I was going crazy until I read this.
I remember the first time someone told me I needed to work on making my women more attractive.
I thought they meant I needed to work on my technique and simply, drawing better woman. Meaning I thought they meant I was drawing woman poorly. But no. Apparently, it was clarified that I was drawing woman to "Fat". That pissed me off to no end. I think I would have taken it better if they felt I was bad at drawing woman.
Of course I began to draw woman even more thicker than before. Soon I found a happy middle ground that I'm comfortable with. I know you spoke on more than just the way I draw woamn but it stuck out to me the most and it's what I get the most flack about.
Anyways,
Thank you so much. You have no idea how much this means to me.
Warm regards,
Harold Edge