May 8th 2012 By: Andy Khouri
A multiple Eisner Award nominee
for his superlative work on Marvel Comics' Daredevil
, Paolo Rivera
is one of mainstream comics' most compelling artists. His stuff is incredibly stylish, fun and classy, anchored with a technical proficiency and clever design sense that sets his images apart from everything else on the stands. Indeed, Rivera's covers are routinely impressive, like that of Daredevil
#12, a striking illustration of a disrobing woman as seen via the blind Matt Murdock's "radar sense." It's a balance of sexy, sophisticated and superhero that's rarely achieved on a comic book cover, and I was surprised to learn that Rivera used himself as reference
. As it turns out, he does this all the time.
For Daredevil #12, Rivera intended the woman's shirt to be white, but a computer coloring mistake changed it to flat black. "It was a happy accident," he wrote. The artist also pointed out that even though he used himself as a model, he remembered to make the buttons on the left side, something many illustrators overlook when drawing women's blouses.
Rivera has been cataloguing such photographic examples on his blog in a weekly feature called Wacky Reference Wednesdays
. Apparently he's been doing this for over 170 weeks, which is distressing to me because I only just found out about this but it's also good news because I now have a lot of fun reading to do. Here's the tag
for all of Rivera's process posts, which are must-reads for fans of great illustration.