Month of Art Stars: Artist's Choice - Irv Novick

Every day this month I'm going to feature the work of a great artist, only instead of me picking the artist to feature, they will be picked by their peers, fellow professional comic book artists who are picking out artists (from the past and present) who they think deserve special attention. Do note that most artists I asked about this gave me multiple answers and I picked out one choice out of a number of suggestions, so these are not definitive answers, like "Artist X likes Artist Y and he thinks all other Artists are terrible!" Here is an archive of the artists featured so far!

Today, we have the pick of Stuart Sayger, creator of the independent comic, Shiver in the Dark and artist on Lego/DC Comics' insanely popular Bionicle comics (very likely the first introduction to comic books for thousands of young children). Stuart also happens to have a forum on CBR, so we CBR-ians stick together! Check out Stuart's website here (and you can come check him out on CBR's forums here).


Stuart's pick is Irv Novick.

Irving "Irv" Novick worked in comics for almost fifty years before poor eyesight ended his career in the 1990s.

His first comic work came when he was in his late 20s, working for MLJ (later Archie) Comics, where he introduced the first patriotic superhero, The Shield, in Pep Comics #1!

Novick was the most popular superhero artist at MLJ/Archie, but by the end of World War II, Archie was getting away from superheroes, and Novick spent five years or so working in advertisement and comic strips.

He joined DC in the early 1950s, where he began a professional relationship with Robert Kanigher that ran for basically the next two decades, drawing Wonder Woman covers (a book Kanigher wrote and edited)...


but mostly becoming one of DC's amazingly talented group of war artists. Novick began with drawing Our World at War...

then All-American Men of War...

and even a short-lived new series, Capt. Storm....

Novick mostly stayed out superheroes until the very end of the decade, which certainly is ONE of the reasons that he is less well known than his contemporaries.

He eventually spent the late 1960s and all of the 1970s (and even the early 1980s) drawing superheroes, primarily a notable run on Batman (but never really a consistent run - just filling in on either Batman or Detective - whichever book needed an artist that month)...


but also a long run on the Flash...

Novick's "problem" was that he was drawing Batman at the same time as Neal Adams, Jim Aparo and, to a lesser extent, Don Newton, all of whom are great artists who tended to get a bit more attention than Novick (especially Adams - how must it feel to be Novick and have your work stuck in the middle of an Adams storyline - as great as Novick was, fans were likely, "Hey! Where's Adams?!?!")

Novick's work is marked by a wonderful sense of storytelling, but also the ability to come up with striking panel designs that would practically leap off of the page.

Here's a rare Superman story by Novick...

Novick's last DC comic (that I'm aware of) was 1990's Flash 50th Anniversary Special #1...

Novick passed away in 2004.

Thanks to Stuart for the pick!

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