David Bowie by Boo Cook

Comic Creators Worldwide Pay Homage to David Bowie

Artist Andrew Kolb published this wonderful tribute to David Bowie's "Space Oddity" back in 2011
Artist Andrew Kolb published this wonderful tribute to David Bowie’s “Space Oddity” back in 2011

 I don’t know where I’m going from here, but I promise it won’t be boring.
David Bowie

David Bowie‘s work – and indeed, Bowie himself – has often inspired comic creators across the globe, be it as they listened to his music as they worked or in their work itself. With his death at 69 after a long battle with cancer, just after his new album Blackstar was released, many comic artists have quickly published their own tributes to the innovative rock star, who counted British comics The Beano and VIZ among his Top 100 favourite reads (and, as comics writer Peter Hogan reminds me, quoted from the X-Men way back in 1971).

Among those I’ve seen so far are portraits by The Beano, Steve Bright, Boo Cook, Stephen Collins (for The Guardian) and Sarah McIntyre, to mention but a few.

David Bowie by Boo Cook
David Bowie by Boo Cook

This sad occasion isn’t of course the first time Bowie has appeared or inspired comics or art work. In 2011, the Comics Alliance website highlighted the work of Andrew Kolb for example, who created his own telling the story of David Bowie’s classic “Space Oddity” in the style of an illustrated children’s book. The tale of doomed Major Tom plays out in Kolb’s bright and retro animation style and you can download the whole book as a PDF at Kolb’s website.

The Side Effects of Cocaine by Sean T. Collins and Isaac Moylan charts some of Bowie’s darker aspects with a slice-of-life comic (more information on that work here), while Stormfront Comics documented his life in Fame: David Bowie in 2014, a comic written by Mike Lynch, drawn by George Amaru that’s available via Comixology. Four covers in the series were by Graham Hill.

But for me, one of the best collections of comic tributes I’ve come across come in “The Thin White Sketchbook” – drawings collected by Sean T. Collins of Bowie that include the work of Kate Beaton, Seth, Bill Plympton, Roger Langridge (below) and many others, which you can view online here on Flickr.

Rest In Peace, Mr Bowie. You will be much missed.

david bowie by roger langridge
Roger has posted a new tribute to Bowie here

More Bowie Tributes

Bowie: A Celebration by Lizz Lunney
Bowie: A Celebration by Lizz Lunney

• In 2012, Lizz Lunney put together a Bowie zine to celebrate her love for the musician. It sold out of the 300 Limited Edition copies printed and so she decided to upload the PDF, free to any other Bowie fans who might enjoy it

• Artist John Riordan is giving a talk to the Blake Society tomorrow (Tuesday 12th January at Waterstones Piccadilly, 7.30). Admission is free – you’re supposed to email piccadilly@waterstones to put your name on the door. He’ll be showing off some of his work, including sketches of Bowie, William Blake and his Taxi Driver cartoons

Mark Blamire Bowie Designs

• In 2013 designer Mark Blamire asked 100 designers to express their love for the artist David Bowie using just the five letters from his surname and in the typeface of their choice. They all came back with something unique and lovingly crafted and each submission was created out of admiration for him and his work

David Bowie by Kev F Sutherland
David Bowie by Kev F Sutherland

• Cartoonist, writer and comedian Kev F Sutherland has been a Bowie fan since 1973, when he bought Life On Mars. “Not being as tech-savvy as he always was, I only have three albums on my phone,” he says. “One is the Best Of Bowie. And the Scottish Falsetto Socks would be nowhere without him, from their mashup of ‘Laughing Gnome’/’Ashes To Ashes’ to the version of ‘Starman’ that closed our Socks In Space show, Bowie wrote some of our best stuff. Loving the alien.” Check out ‘Socks in Space Oddity’ here

• There’s a selction of Bowie images, including some featured or mentioned here, over on the Forbidden Planet International blog here

 

 

David Bowie by Rob Moran
David Bowie by Rob Moran

David Bowie by Jesus Antonio Hernandez

 

Published by

Avatar

John Freeman

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.

Let us know what you think about this story

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.