The term “comic book artist” usually conjures images of superheroes and super villains, or perhaps light hearted kid stuff like Archie and Jughead but Bernie Wrightson became one of the greatest and most loved comic book artists despite comparatively little work in these genres. Bernie grew up reading the remarkably disturbing EC Comics in the 1950s and set off on a different path: one of horror, muck, rotting flesh and stinking ooze.
As a kid I remember actually being a bit frightened by Wrightson’s art. It always seemed a bit too “adult” for kids to be reading. Not in terms of nudity or violence, it was just so creepy, so fetid and moldering. In 1971 he (along with fellow ACE guest Len Wein) created Swamp Thing, a half man/half swamp muck beast that was perfect for Bernie’s style.
In 1974 Wrightson left DC for Warren to work on their more adult themed black and white magazines, most notably Creepy.
Bernie worked for seven years on his adaptation of Frankenstein, probably his most personal work and an amazing achievement.
Bernie has also worked extensively outside of comics, designing posters (Creepshow), album covers and even the Reavers for the Serenity movie.
Bernie Wrightson is in the pantheon of great comic book artists so get out to the Albuquerque Comic Expo and meet the man.
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