We are so sad to know that Darwyn Cooke has passed away, and it prompted me to share some thoughts about my relationship to him and his work.
When I started working at a comic shop at 16 I wasn't interested in main stream superheroes at all. I was busy looking at work by Eisner, Allred, Kyle Baker, etc and rifling through independent publications.
Then CATWOMAN happened.
I started seeing the issues come in on Tuesday nights, and was instantly hooked.
I had never seen a woman in mainstream comics who looked like that, talked like that, acted like that. I had never seen an artist approach a title character with such style, power and aplomb.
Suddenly Cooke had bridged the gap I had perceived between comics and high art.
Cooke showed me superhero comics COULD BE HIGH ART,
not just Maus not just Blankets.
I would continue to follow his work voraciously for over a decade.
At HEROESCON 2014 I was approached by a very nice man who commissioned me for a piece inspired by my Mulholland Drive painting. In passing he said, "Well I might end up giving it to Darwyn and Marsha!"
A while later he told me he was their legal council and close friend, often visiting them at their incredibly stylish (OF COURSE) mid-century Miami home.
And a while after that Mark was very kind to send me a photo of my piece hanging in their living room.
I was overcome with emotion.
I'd never met Darwyn in person, but his art changed my life.
To be accepted into his home meant a nod from a HERO.
A sense of real validation.
The fact that he saw something good in my work was an embarrassment of riches.
Anyway, it makes me feel very strange to post this because this isn't about me, it's about HIM and his incredible legacy.
So with that I will leave you with just a bit of his stunning work on Catwoman