Coming in 2020: Masters of British Comic Art

Masters of British Comic Art, Artist and writer David Roach‘s history of British comics and the artists who made them is due for release from Rebellion in April 2020.

Masters of British Comic Art, Artist and writer David Roach's history of British comics and the artists who made them is due for release from Rebellion in April 2020

This mammoth, 300-pages plus new title from the Treasury of British Comics should prove a huge boon for anyone interested in knowing more about British comic book illustrators, and much more besides.

Having discussed elements of the project with author and 2000AD artist David Roach in recent months, and knowing who has supported it with original artwork from comics across several decades, this will be a must buy for me.

In Masters of British Comic Art, a high-production hardcover compendium perfect as a coffee table book or academic encyclopaedia, David delivers a painstakingly researched insight into 120 years of British comic book art: a wildly entertaining and educational tome, that journeys through the history of the British comic industry that looks set to be a definitive study and celebration of a beloved industry.

Behind a brand new cover by superstar artist Brian Bolland, and featuring artwork from a vast number of highly-acclaimed artists – all carefully scanned from original artwork – Masters of British Comic Art details the surprising and fascinating evolution of the art form, from its humble beginnings at the beginning of the 20th century to its current world-conquering status

Inspirational: P.R.Garriock’s “Masters of Comic Book Art”, released back in 1978Inspirational: P.R.Garriock’s “Masters of Comic Book Art”, released back in 1978

“It’s my biggest book so far, and quite possibly my best I think,” says David, revealing the book features well over 100 artists and is “as complete a history of British comics and artists as I could put together” which, like his previous books takes some inspiration from Masters of Comic Book Art, published way back in 1978.

Examining key periods in British comic history, overall, it’s a veritable Who’s Who of talent when it comes to artists who contributed to British comics down the years, including Brian Bolland, Yvonne Hutton, Dave Gibbons, and celebrated greats such as Don Lawrence and lost masters like Reg Bunn and Shirley Bellwood.

David tells us he’s highlighted quite a mixture of humour and nursery artists, too, such as Ken Reid, Leo Baxendale, Hunt Emerson, Dudley D Watkins, Tom Brown, Bob Dewar, Gordon Hutchings, Bert Felstead and Roy Wilson.

Leading with a historical section at the front, followed by a lengthy gallery of all the great Britiah artists, the contributions overseas creators made to British comics isn’t forgotten either, as Masters of British Comic Art includes a chapter devoted to agencies, which includes work by the likes of creators like such as Solano Lopez, Jesus Blasco, whose work David documented brilliantly in his earlier work, the highly recommended Masters of Spanish Comic Art.

“I’m including over 400 scans shot from original artwork, so it’s going to be a real treat for the eyes too – sort of an all British Artists Edition,” he continues. It features all the well-known greats but also lots of forgotten or unknown talents, so I really think it’s going to be an eye-opener for even the most committed fan.

“Plus, there’s the amazing cover art by Brian Bolland too, who’s done a truly fantastic job, I’m sure you’ll agree.

“Really, I couldn’t be more thrilled that I’ve been given the chance to put this book together and genuinely can’t wait to see it in the shops. Roll on April!”

Masters of British Comic Art will be published in early April 2020, retailing at £34.99/$45 – pre-order it here from Amazon (Affiliate Link)

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The founder of downthetubes, John works as a comics editor, writer, as Creative Consultant on the Dan Dare audio adventures for B7 Media, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. Working in British comics publishing for over 30 years, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Star Trek Magazine and Babylon 5 Magazine. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War and “Dan Dare”. He’s the writer of “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz, published on Tapastic; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood for digital comic 100% Biodegradable.



Categories: British Comics, British Comics - Books, downthetubes Comics News, downthetubes News

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5 replies

  1. Really looking forward to this!

  2. I seriously can’t wait for this. David’s an excellent comics historian as well as a wonderful cartoonist.

  3. There appears to be an grinning octopus standing in front of a taxi.

  4. Absolutely brilliant. This looks like a must-have book. I’m very pleased to see Rupert Bear crossing that road too! Thanks for the post.

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