Updated at 10:57 AM to reflect Marie Severin’s passing
Longtime Marvel Comics artist and colorist, Marie Severin, who was inducted into the Will Eisner Hall of Fame in 2001, has passed away at the age of 89, following a recent stroke.
Former Marvel staffer and close friend to Severin, Irene Vartanoff shared the news of her passing on her Facebook page.
Severin broke into the comic book industry in the early 1950s when her older brother, comic book artist John Severin (1922-2012), asked her to color one of his stories for EC Comics. She did such a good job that she was soon the regular colorist for EC Comics. When EC Comics’ comic book line went out of business following the institution of the Comics Code Authority (which seemed almost designed specifically to put EC Comics out of business), Severin worked for Atlas Comics a little bit before leaving comic books entirely to go work at the Federal Reserve.
In the late 1950s, Severin began to get back into comic books, working for Atlas again doing some production work. As Atlas turned into Marvel and began to expand, Severin’s work for them expanded, as well. By the end of the 1960s, Severin was the main colorist at Marvel while also doing the occasional penciling job. When the Hulk gained his own series, Incredible Hulk, Severin was the penciler for the first five issues of the series.
Severin was a particularly gifted artist when it came to likenesses, so she was a perfect artist for Marvel’s parody comic book series, Not Brand Echh. In the early 1970s, Severin gave up her job as Marvel’s lead colorist (handing the assignment over to comic book veteran George Roussos, who continued in the role until the 1980s) so that she could do more penciling work.
She co-created Spider-Woman in 1976, designing her iconic costume. In the 1980s, she began working in Special Projects for Marvel, doing a lot of licensed work (again, her likenesses were always amazing). She was let go by Marvel during their restructuring following their late 1990s bankruptcy. She continued working as an artist until retiring in the mid-2000s.
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