'Comic Book Artist' magazine to be published by Top Shelf

Official Press Release

We are proud to announce the two-time Eisner award-winning magazine,Comic Book Artist, will now be published by Top Shelf Productions, as ofJune 2003. "CBA Editor Jon B. Cooke has long been a friend of Top Shelfand we've admired his magazine for years, so we couldn't be happier tohave CBA join us," said Chris Staros. "CBA brings an added prestige andunabashed enthusiasm about comics which complements our entire line,"adds Brett Warnock.

Winner of the 2000 and 2002 Will Eisner Comics Industry Award for BestComics-Related Periodical, Comic Book Artist has been devoted tocovering the lives and works of many an overlooked comics creator, aswell as examining hitherto unknown aspects of this wacky and wonderfulfield for the past five years, fast becoming a favorite among fans andprofessionals. "I've been gratified to receive encouragement andaccolades from such diverse artists as Art Spiegelman and Jim Lee,"editor Cooke said. "Writers as different as Michael Chabon and Stan Leehave also lent CBA their support, so needless to say it's been a longand delightfully strange trip so far. And, I promise, it's going to geteven stranger!"

Cooke plans an entire revamp for CBA, though he assures that it willretain its strong emphasis on retrospective material. "The originalincarnation of CBA focused primarily on the history of comics from the'60s to the early '80s, with occasional forays into the contemporaryfield. The magazine covered some pretty diverse material, from Sugar &Spike to National Lampoon, as well as devoting issues to some of thefield's top creators, including Neal Adams and Alex Toth. We'd take asubject -- say the comics of Atlas/Seaboard or Harvey Comics -- andexhaustively cover every single aspect every which way but Tuesday!While I don't intend to feature such wall-to-wall coverage in theregular issues of CBA, I will spotlight smaller, more manageablesubjects within (we hope) every issue, and leave the 'carpet-bombing'approach for the CBA Specials we will be releasing every so often."

"I'd like CBA to better reflect its name by looking less at companiesand more at worthy individual artists, whether they be contemporarynewcomers or traditional fan favorites." Each issue of the new ComicBook Artist will continue to feature comprehensive interviews, as wellas headlining creators who have made a significant impact on the field.Future subjects scheduled to be showcased include Frank Cho, BernieWrightson, Colleen Doran, Alex Ross, Kyle Baker, William Stout, MichaelAllred, George Tuska, Bob Burden, Tim Bradstreet, Jim Lee, Jeff Smith,Mark Shultz, Will Eisner, and many others. The revamped magazine willalso inaugurate news and review departments as well as the debut of acolor section.

"We will vigorously cover the field in typical CBA fashion, withemphasis on art and quality," Cooke explained, "pointing out what'sworthy, cool, and especially fun, from a positive and productiveperspective."

Current plans are for CBA to release #1, Vol. 2 under the Top Shelfbanner in June 2003. The magazine will publish 10 times a year, retailfor $7.50, and release one to two Specials a year. Cooke said, "We willaggressively seek advertising as well as review current material (so weimplore folks to send review copies of their stuff to CBA), and themagazine will not only showcase timeless features but alsoup-to-the-minute coverage of events and publications important to ourreaders."

TwoMorrows Publishing, the former publisher of CBA, will continue tosell back issues of CBA's first 25-issue incarnation (visitwww.twomorrows.com/comicbook artist for ordering info or writeTwoMorrows, 1812 Park Drive, Raleigh, NC 27605; phone (919) 833-8092;e-mailtwomorrow@aol.com).

"Moving to Top Shelf is important for me professionally and personally,"Cooke added. "Chris Staros and Brett Warnock so obviously love comics,and I count them as good friends, so I'm naturally looking forward tothe transition with great enthusiasm. Top Shelf has publishedoutstanding material, both timeless and cutting-edge stuff I've beenadmiring for years, and I can't adequately express how happy I am to bejoining them."

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