Brian Bolland is a legend in comics, and would be just for his covers alone, but he’s also responsible for drawing classics like Batman: The Killing Joke, and Judge Dredd. He started his art career in his native United Kingdom illustrating his own fanzines while at art school, and then he moved on to contributing to underground publications like Friendz, Oz, and International Times. After he finished his course at The Central School of Art & Design in London in 1973 Bolland joined the talent agency Bardon Press Features, and was assigned various small comics jobs including a bi-weekly Nigerian comic called Powerman about an African superhero. Steady work continued from there, and he would eventually get to work on future comics hits 2000 AD, and Judge Dredd in the late 70’s.
He was recruited by Green Lantern artist Joe Staton who discovered him at a comics convention while visiting England, and thus the British Invasion of comics officially began! He started off doing covers for DC Comics, and then moved onto bigger projects like the 12 issue maxi-series Camelot 3000 with writer Len Wein. Later on he would be put more to use as a cover artist exclusively, rather than an interior artist, because his cover work is so detailed, and striking that I can only imagine how many thousands of comics he sold just based off his cover illustrations alone! Legendary covers for Grant Morrison’s Animal Man, The Invisibles, Wonder Woman, and The Flash solidified Brian Bolland as a legend in the industry. Throughout his carreer Bolland would also work on personal projects like the more sketchy styled Mr. Mamoulian, and the provocative The Actress and the Bishop.
In 2006 the book The Art of Brian Bolland was published, and it provides a very comprehensive overview of Bolland’s career including just about all of his classic covers, and examples of his photography work that he took while traveling the world over the years.
Brian Bolland has won numerous comics industry awards including over 5 Eisners, an Inkpot Award, and Favourite Artist in the British section of the Eagle Awards.
You can follow Brian Bolland on his blog here.
For more comics related art, you can follow me on my website comicstavern.com – Andy Yates
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