All written content ©2013 Mike Pascale. Visual content ©2013 its respective owner(s).

 

There’s no shortage of posts griping and sniping about the portrayal of women in comics–especially in the superhero titles. Anorexic arms and legs, waists as thin as ankles, with giant, circle-template breasts, callipygian backsides, impossibly tight and/or revealing costumes, pouty lips, seductive poses and gratuitous sex (implied or actual). Funny thing is, people have been complaining about such things since the 1950s. Since most superhero comics are drawn by and for men, the complaining won’t cease for a while (if ever). But when I come across depictions of fantasy females that appeal to me as both a hetero and an artist, I’d like to point them out.

 

Here are a few, courtesy of the great Nick Cardy (born Nicholas Viscardi), one of DC’s best of the Silver Age., who’s also known for his early work on Will Eisner’s LADY LUCK in the ’40s. (He’s also one of the nicest men I’ve had the joy of meeting. Surprisingly humble.) I’m going to do a “Top Ten Favorite Covers” segment on the site of just Nick’s covers, but this gives me an excuse to squeeze in some extras. (This way, they won’t all be filled with gorgeous women and I don’t look like a total letch.) Nick is not only still kicking, but kicking butt with some lovely personal commissions.

 

Teen Titans 23 cover

 

Aquaman 22 cover

 

Aquaman interior pages

nick cardy  wonder woman

Nick Cardy Girls Romances 154

Nick Cardy Lilith 100

Cardy wondergirl portrait

Nick Cardy superman 261 cover art

 

Also included is the original art for one of my top ten SUPERMAN covers of all time (first series, #261). Seriously, how many times have you seen Supes so submissive to a woman before or since? Not many, that’s for sure! This is pure Italian art.

I see nothing wrong with idealizing the female form as the male one is, but I prefer those female figures that that don’t look like pencils with attached balloons. It’s possible to be curvy without being crazy–beautiful and believable. Though idealized (as most art should be), Nick drew real women.

Most of the Silver Age and even Golden Age greats drew this way. Today, it’s Adam Hughes, Frank Cho, Terry Dodson and a few others that have taken up the mantle. Who are some of your favorites?

 

Bru-Hed CloseupBest,

Mike

 

 

P.S.: If you’d like an original art commission of any fabulous fantasy female or femme fatale (or magnificent, manly man) — I’m more than happy to create it for you at a very reasonable price. Just ask Craig here!

 

Published by Mike Pascale

Mike is a freelance storyboardist, artist, writer, comic book/web comic creator, graphic designer, award-winning senior art director/copywriter, Kubert School alumnus, Spectrum Fantasy Art award-winner, guitarist/songwriter, future novelist and full-time, life-long comics fan, pop culture collector, and book hoarder. His creations include Bru-Hed™ (America’s favorite Blockhead™), The Game Buzz!™ weekly webcomic, Nasti: Monster Hunter™, Mikey Moo-Moo™ and more “™s” waiting to be unleashed from his crazy cranium.

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7 Comments

  1. Man ‘o man, I love Nick’s work! I still drool over the shot of Lilith dancing in the birdcage when the Titans first discover her! That guy has always known how to capture the essence of expression and gel it down into something dynamic! Thanks for the tribute, Mike…it’s long overdue in this field!

  2. I have enjoyed Nick’s art since I first saw it in an early issue of Aquaman; his Mera is the best looking woman to ever appear in comics.

    I’ve been blessed with two Cardy original commissions:

    1) Bat Lash – http://cafurl.com?i=19492
    2) The Original Teen Titans – http://cafurl.com?i=20331

    I was hoping for a recreation (or OML) of the cover to Aquaman 18 (the wedding of Aquaman and Mera), but he retired just before I could afford it. Drat!

    Anyone that hasn’t read them should get a copy of:
    1) Nick Cardy – Behind the Art
    2) The Art of Nick Cardy

    Full of wonderful Cardy goodness.

    PS. Nick called me to ensure that the commissions were good enough; I about died. 🙂

    1. Thanks, gents!
      Love the commissions, Alex. Is he not doing them anymore? A loss for all of us! Such skill, talent, ability and passion.

      Thanks, James–agree with you and wish you success with Madame X!

      Hey Steve, thanks for stopping by. I am Hulk green with envy for your upcoming visit!! I’d probably ask him so many questions he’d throw me out…especially after I drooled over every piece of art I’d see there. Please give him my very best and tell him we’ll make sure he lives forever through his wonderful work!

  3. Hi Mike, fellow Comicart member Steve Lipsky here. This really is a long overdue tribute to not only one of the best good girl artists in the industry but, as you mentioned, one of the all-time nicest guys in comic. As it happens, i will be visiting Nick in 2 weeks at his home and will pass on your comments and a link to this tribute! (Don’t know if Nick has a computer or not but, I’ll find out when I call him later this week.)

  4. I just love the work he Nick put out on his years at DC. I was a big fan of the old Teen Titans. But not I too am one person whose tired of the Ballooned Up Slinky Spine woman in comic books these days. Even though these artist have a brain they seem to create nothing but Pin Up Girls with nothing up stairs anymore. Or they’re Blood Thirsty Mom ma’s that Shoot up the bad guys just before lunch is served. So I welcome anyone out their to compare them to my MADAME X INCORPORATED! A character whose got CHARACTER AND A BRAIN TO BOOT!

  5. OOPS! In my haste to get out my thoughts on this site I made a Boo Boo. In my comments I meant to say that I was a big fan of The Teen Titans but not anymore. For I am one person whose …
    Well you can see the rest of my thoughts on the comment box above. Thanx

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