Tuesday, May 28, 2013

What Lurks in the Longbox? #38 - The Creativity of Ditko!

The Creativity of Ditko
IDW Publishing
$39.99, color, 203 pgs.
Edited and Designed: Craig Yoe
Introduction: Paul Levitz

The following is one of several reviews that was scheduled to appear in the pages of Comics Buyer's Guide Magazine, but unfortunately never made it, due to the magazine's untimely cancellation on January 9th, 2013.  This review would have probably been featured in Issue #1700, which would have been a huge anniversary issue for the publication.

From the moment readers open this beautiful hardcover celebrating the art of Steve Ditko, they will realize it’s one of those rare books in which every page has purpose.  Whether it’s the self portrait on the cover, the title page illustration, or even the back cover panel, everything in here is absolutely breathtaking. 

Ditko’s genius is brought to life through a mix of early photos; essays by luminaries like Mike Gold and Jack C. Harris; and of course selections of Ditko’s best works, ranging from horror and science fiction, to mainstream superheroes.  Most of the book contains little dialogue, as Ditko’s work speaks for itself.  It’s even more enjoyable in this large format, and a great companion piece to The Art of Ditko, which Craig Yoe released in 2010.
Perhaps the best way to describe this stunning collection is to quote the illustration used on the title page: “You’re holding the book in your hand now, and you’re staring at it…even now, you can hardly believe that it’s yours, that you finally have it in your possession.”     

Whether you're a casual fan of Ditko's work, or a devoted completist, this book is a fascinating look at the artist Yoe refers to as "the greatest mainstream comic book artist of his time."  Highest possible recommendation.

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