Saturday, February 25, 2012

Happy 66th Birthday, Rick Geary!

Rick Geary has been making comics for decades now. He got his start in the business with works published in high profile magazines like Heavy Metal and National Lampoon. His early work was typically whimsical science fiction, but later he branched off into more historical topics. He did a few adaptations for the 1980s iteration of Classics Illustrated, Charles Dickens' Great Expectations , Emily Bronte's Wuthering Heights, and H.G. Wells' Invisible Man, which have more recently been re-released in affordable hardcover.

His major project has been multiple volumes in the series Treasury of Victorian Murder and Treasury of XXth Century Murder from NBM Publishers. In these books, he presents meticulously researched and excellently rendered accounts of some of history's most famous and infamous events, including the Lizzie Borden murder trial, Jack the Ripper's killing spree, President Lincoln's Assassination, and the kidnapping of the Lindbergh baby.

In addition to those ghoulish delights Geary has also created graphic biographies, like those of J. Edgar Hoover and Leon Trotsky, and branched off into historical fiction with his Adventures of Blanche books.

His distinctive black and white art calls to mind Charles Addams and Edward Gorey while displaying its own qualities. This interview at Robot 6 speaks to much of his career and work on true crime and historical biography books.

Although Geary might not be a household name yet, he has had a long and distinguished career. He received the 1980 Inkpot Award from the San Diego Comic Convention and the 1994 Book and Magazine Illustration Award from the National Cartoonists Society. His most recent book, The Lives of Sacco and Vanzetti, was recognized as one of YALSA's Great Graphic Novels of 2012.

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