365 Reasons to Love Comics #237

Wrapping up our look at colorists, we've got one of the coolest ladies in comics! (Archive.)


237. Laura Martin

Laura Martin (nee DePuy) is one of the best colorists currently in the biz.I love her work because it gives the reader a sense that the characters and objects on the page actually take up space and have full definition. They exist due to her excellent colors. Her skin looks just like skin in all its tone and suppleness. And yeah, she's the perfect colorist for John Cassaday's artwork. Her work with him on Planetary and Astonishing X-Men is gorgeous, and her painterly digital brushwork on books like Serenity, or her moody colors on the Ultimates, beg to be seen.

Look at the top of the post-- check out Colossus' shiny skin and Kitty's rounded features. It's all done with the colors, and it all works marvelously. She also quite often puts an entire scene under one dominant shade in order to sell the mood or emotion. And boy, does she sell it.

Here's what Laura herself says about the art of coloring:

A colorist should be an artist first. That doesn't mean school-trained; that means having a natural inclination toward visual aesthetics. It helps a lot if the colorist also draws or paints; this helps lend a better understanding to the penciler's and inker's intent.A good colorist understands his or her role within the creative vision of a comic book. The colorist should understand how the colors can complement the artwork and tell the story, without disrupting the natural flow or overpowering the writer's, penciler's or inker's intent.

A good colorist also knows how to hit a deadline.

You can read more on her website (currently under construction) and see more of her work at this fine gallery. And here, have an interview, courtesy of Sequential Tart.

It's been fun looking at colorists. I know what you're thinking, though: what about the other guys? The men and women who colored comics before the digital revolution? Fear not, I love them too. For years, they worked with nothing but brushes and papers and colors, and brought comic book stories to vivid life. They most certainly deserve our undying appreciation.Name your favorite colorist!

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