07/09/2018

Caleb Orecchio here with brief thoughts on Steve Ditko, and other news!

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from Charlton Action Featuring “Static” Vol. 2 No. 11, 1985

You’ve probably heard by now that Steve Ditko has passed away. Thee great Steve Ditko. I’ve been going through my annual Ditko obsession these past few months which makes his passing all the more surprising. For a while, I’d figured he’d live forever–and he will, being survived by his work.

Often, I can’t decide if I’m more in awe of his strange imagination, his incredible storytelling chops, his amazing formalistic skills or his unstoppable work ethic. Ditko is a true inspiration to cartoonists, or at least to this cartoonist.

I could go on and on, but am wary of adding to the noise. “What can be said that hasn’t been said before?” I’ve already written multiple columns about Ditko’s work and will continue to do so, so I’ll not exhaust my praise and admiration here.

I constantly find new challenges as a cartoonist, formalistically and idealistically, in Ditko’s work. I am constantly blown away by the man’s innumerable innovations. I am sure he is on the Astral Plane, navigating the cosmos with the other long-lost comic book greats. Or maybe not. I wouldn’t be surprised if he’d spend the afterlife working in isolation, and mastering his art as he did in this life.

Below are three of my favorite Ditko spreads lately. Two of which I’ve written about on this site.

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from “The Hanged Man” from The Many Ghosts of Doctor Graves Vol. 11, No. 68, 1981 (Charlton)

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from “A Voice in the Fog” from Haunted Vol. 3, No. 14, 1973 (Charlton)

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from “Dream World!” from Chamber of Chills Vol. 1, No. 19, 1975 (originally from Tales to Astonish, 1961) (Marvel)

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if you don’t know, now you know

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