Lines and Colors art blog

John Severin 1921-2012

John Severin
John Severin was an excellent and underappreciated comics artist whose career spanned a good part of the 20th century and into the 21st.

Severin was prolific during his long career, and though he never developed the devoted following of flashier artists (except among a discerning few), he produced consistently high-level work for a variety of publications.

He held his own among comics legends like Wally Wood, Will Elder and Jack Davis as part of the core group of artists working with Harvey Kurtzman on the original, insanely terrific Mad comics (which eventually devolved into the pale shadow Mad Magazine as we know it).

He worked on other EC titles, notably for the western and war comics Two-Fisted Tales and Frontline Combat, where his solid draftsmanship and superb command of texture served the stories well.

He worked for Marvel, DC, Dark Horse, Warren and other publishers, as well as Mad Magazine competitor Cracked.

He is particularly known for his work, often in collaboration with his sister Marie Severin, on the Marvel sword and sorcery title King Kull.

John Severin died on February 12, 2012 at the age on 90. I’ve listed some obits and tributes below, many of which have artwork.

There is a 1999 interview with Severin on The Comics Journal.


3 responses to “John Severin 1921-2012”

  1. Charlie,that sword-fight illustration at the top is especially nice.I’m guessing it was from his Kull portfolio.I’ve never seen it before.Severn did a lot of quality work.Thanks!

    1. You can see other pieces from the portfolio by searching for John Severin on the Comic Art Fans site.

  2. Randall Ensley Avatar
    Randall Ensley

    John Severin was an influence on me from an early age. A lot of people are probably getting introduced to his art due to his passing. He was great!