Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Robert McGinnis's and Frank Frazetta's Women



I recently received the Robert McGinnis book and was thrilled with every page. McGinnis clearly creates a story with every illustration with the poses and expressions.

But what really stood out to me was how he illustrated the female form. Of course, all of his figures are idealized in some way. What I found most striking about McGinnis's image of women was that despite the idealization, all of the figures retain pleasing proportions. His women may have impossibly flat stomachs, long legs and full hips, but they never look grotesque. This is especially true regarding how McGinnis draws breast. Unlike the illustrations of women that have been popular for several decades with super-skinny waists and gigantic breasts, McGinnis's women's breasts are in proportion to the rest of their bodies. How refreshing!




I think the same is true with Frank Frazetta's women. He depicts them with fuller breasts than McGinnis but the breasts he draws are still in proportion to the rest of the women's bodies.



A note about Frazetta's women: they often have a full buttocks. When watching the Frazetta documentary, I noticed that his wife had the same physical trait! Basically, all of the women Frazetta illustrated were a reflection of his wife. How endearing!

I wish more of today's comics artists and illustrators would study how McGinnis and Frazetta illustrate women by maintaining appealing proportions while still idealizing the form. That's what separates the good from the great.

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