Comics / Spotlight

Binnies 2011: Best Artist


By Zak Edwards
January 2, 2012 - 13:56

As comic book writers brought their ideas to greater heights this year to meet the demands of a changing industry, it was the artists who still had to bring these ideas to the page.  Bringing a variety of styles and approaches to the comic book, artists this year also brought a venerable army of redesigns and interpretations for the DC reboot.  But across the board, comic artists continued to pump out work with flair and style on a weekly basis.  Here are the artists that stood out the most for us in 2011.  Remember, more Binnie Awards are just a click away through the links to your right.

Dan Horn: Francesco Francavilla

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It seems everywhere you turn in your local comic shop, you're bound to be met by some gorgeous covers by the extremely talented Francesco Francavilla. But, before he was supplying publishers like Dynamite with variant covers galore, Francavilla was cutting his teeth on books like Zorro, Scalped, Scott Snyder's Detective Comics, and David Liss' Black Panther. With a flair for classic pulp and noir sensibilities and a vibrant color palette, Francavilla has been one of the most eye-catching artists of the past year, taking the industry by storm.


Philip Schweier: Gary Frank

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Capturing expression is no accident. It takes a lot of talent to accurately render facial expressions borne of emotion. Many comic book characters these days seem to run the gamut from angry to angrier, I think no one captures the quieter moments better than Gary Frank. When I say quieter, I don’t refer to bland, expressionless stoicism; I’m referring to quiet confidence and/or subtle amusement. It just won’t do to have a super-powerful hero obviously laughing at the absurdities of his nemesis du jour. But a little bit of emotional restraint goes a long way, and in Frank’s it goes even further.

Andy Frisk: George Perez and Nicola Scott

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Even though the reboot of Superman has vascillated between being interesting at best and horrid at worst, the art on The New 52's Superman has been superb. The combination of Perez and Scott is a winning one. If only the story was too...


Zak Edwards: Sara Pichelli

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While Ultimate Spider-Man went through some major upheavals this year, including killing its main character, Sara Pichelli's stellar art on the reboot kept me going while the series didn't quite meet my expectations.  Simultaneously emotive and expressive while never falling into the trap of cartoonish, Pichelli's grasp of human emotion and well constructed panels and action sequences makes her the most enjoyable artist this year.  I don't usually follow artists, but Sara Pichelli I will follow til the end!



Leroy Douresseaux: Carla Speed-McNeil

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There is an unnatural naturalism to her comic book art that makes her long-running science fiction serial, Finder, seem as if it is comics journalism from a real time and place.  That’s all I can say; she confounds me.

Be sure to check out the other Binnie Award selections, links to which are in the top right of this very article!

Hervé St-Louis: Chris Samnee

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Samnee's work evoke an earlier era of comic book storytelling with hints of Alex Toth. His storytelling is the strongest part of his work. I love the charm he brings to characters. Without his contribution, I'm not sure the retitled Captain America and Bucky series would have been as enjoyable.


Last Updated: September 26, 2021 - 23:48

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