Stranger Dweef #2 Frank Frazetta
This month’s Hero of the Month at Stranger Comics is the immortal Frank Frazetta. He was around for many, many years and his portfolio is massive. From movie posters to pulp comic covers to paintings, Frazetta was the master of the craft. There is no aspect of science fiction or fantasy that has not been affected by his existence. I love Frank’s work.
My true love affair with Frank began with a gift from one of my post-college roommates and friends. On my birthday back 2001, he gave me a print of the “Silver Warrior,” framed even (thanks Mark P). I was captivated by the painting’s majesty and quickly hung it above my bed. A few years later, I finally got out on my own and hung it in my bathroom above the toilet. I would gaze into it every day as I relieved myself.
That may sound a little weird but, hey, I’m a weird guy. Seeing this image day after day, I found myself pondering the many facets that make this painting so amazing. Of all of Frank’s paintings that I have seen, this is it. This is the one for me.
From the detail of his arm, to the dark shadows of his face, to the scale of the warrior driving his beast of burden, this image is powerful. We all know how big polar bears are and he drives a team of them. Need I say more? Yes, I need to say more. I feel the cool nature of the scene by Frank’s choice of color. The mountain in the background is masked by a chilling fog that has obscured the detail of the icy plane behind him. I see all of this and imagine a host of enemies (fire trolls or giants, you pick) as he rides toward them, preparing to slay them for stepping foot into his icy realm of permafrost.
Frank was a master of his craft and there are not many of those out there today. There are, however, hundreds of Frazetta wannabes roaming the eternal canvas as we ponder this great piece of work. He has inspired many to pick up the pen, brush and oil, creating a tidal wave of escape. That is what masters do; they change the battlefield. They expand the creative tapestry and inspire us to create new places, places to build, to dream of, to conquer.
Thanks, Frank, for being such a weirdo. You inspire me. Even as you paint the halls of the dead, you still inspire me.