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I think Mike Mignola is one of the strongest graphic illustrators. He has a highly defined illustrative style. There is bold blocky graphic presence to what he does. Each page is broken down to make the most and best usage of blacks. He simplifies shapes without making it look simple. I'm sure at this stage in his career some things are intuitive, but he didn't get there without a lot of hard work. Some of the toughest decisions as an illustrator, is what to leave out. This not only makes each panel stand out, but helps the story to move in a progressively pleasing manner. Looking at these pages without the customary word balloons (Mike places them on an acetate overlay), each page looks as if it's a poster from the WPA period.
This book is almost a polar opposite to the design style of the PEANUTS book (see previous entry). Where the PEANUTS book was open spatially and bright and playful, the Hellboy book is dense, layered, textured and somewhat imposing. I used aged victorian wallpapers and medical engravings to give it that vintage look. I wanted the design pages to have an atmosphere that was somehow connected to the stories. It's always intimidating to design a book for someone who has established such a strong distinct look to his work. Thanks to Mike for his support and allowing me to create complimentary design pages to accompany his stunning artwork.