Saturday, October 13, 2007

Claire Wendling

Claire Wendling
Claire Wendling is a French comics artist, illustrator and cover artist who made a quick impact when she arrived on the scene. She won the “Alph’Art Avenir” prize while still her third year at the École des Beaux-Arts in Angouleme, and the next year began the comics series Les Lumiéres de l’Amelou with writer Christophe Gibelin. The first volume of that series won the critics’ prize and she received the best young illustrator prize two years later for her magazine covers for Player One. The following year she started Garance, a comics story serialized in the magazine Schtroumpf (image above).

Wendling ventures into areas usually associated with male artists, sword and sorcery, barbarians, sexy pin ups, and jungle animals. She covers a lot of stylistic ground, from loose, gestural drawing to detailed rendering.

Along the way she has picked up a range of influences. I see the elements of Frank Frazetta and Roy Krenkel and Jeff Jones, some Manga/Anime artists, French comics artists like Giraud and Valerian, Disney style animation artists and Art Nouveau artists and Symbolists like Mucha and Ergon Schiele.

Her own site is in French, but not hard to navigate; though I can’t give you direct links because the site is in frames. The Galleries are divided into sections like “Albums (“graphic novels”) and Portfolios”, “Lithos & Affiches” (prints and posters), “Ex-libris & Marque” (book plates), and “Dessins (dreawings) & Animation”. Within those are often subsections that contain numerous (if somewhat small) examples of her work.

In the Albums section, Under “Albums collectifs & magazines” is a selection of nice pin-ups for Barbucci and Canepa’s Sky Doll: Making-of. (See my posts on Barbucci and Canepa and Sky Doll.)

There is also a gallery of Wendling’s work here on the site of one of her publishers. You can get a quick overview of her work, as well as a look at some of the publications of her work that are available as imports here in U.S. on the Stuart Ng Books site (he caries a lot of imported comics and related material).

[Note: links should be considered mildly NSFW]

 
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3 thoughts on “Claire Wendling

  1. Tanja

    One of my favorite artists — wish I had half her talent and experience! My thanks to the Dallas sketchgroup for that first introduction with her book, Drawers 1.0; I’ve since picked up some of her other books myself. Excellent work! :)

  2. Charley Parker Post author

    Thanks for the comments, Tanja.

    For the benefit of other readers, I’ll point out that Tanja is being modest, as she is an accomplished concept artist and illustrator with a very pleasing style. You can see preliminary images and works in progress on her appropriately titled, “My Work in Progress” blog. Unfortunately, her web site is still under re-construction (and has been for a while now). Hopefully, she’ll keep us posted when it’s up again.

  3. Li-An

    Well, I had the opportunity to speak with Claire (ah ah, I say “Claire” like she is an old friend but she is not :-)) some years ago when she was easy to meet and I remember asking her to make her own comics because I have an odd theory about “complete comics artists/vs scenarist&illustrator teams”. She said it was too difficult for her to make a story but Soleil editor announced just after that it should publish some new comics from her. It was a long time ago and no comics… I like very much her drawings and her narration and when she draw “les lumières de l’amalou” I thought she was the best new artist to give some fresh air to the european classic comics drawings. But she had the opportunity to work for animation (less pression, more money and probably private reason) and we only see from time to time some nice drawings. But no comics and it’s too sad.
    (for the real fans, there is a calendar from Delcourt where artists pose naked for a photo and she was one of them. I am not with them because my wife said “I don’t want you to make such silly things !” :-))
    (sorry for my bad english)

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