Rob Liefeld’s 40 worst drawings? You missed a few…

Glenn Hauman

Glenn is VP of Production at ComicMix. He has written Star Trek and X-Men stories and worked for DC Comics, Simon & Schuster, Random House, arrogant/MGMS and Apple Comics. He's also what happens when a Young Turk of publishing gets old.

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122 Responses

  1. Anonymous says:

    I distinctly remember X-Force #1 being full of page layouts stolen straight from an issue of New Teen Titans (direct market #1, maybe?).

    • Glenn Hauman says:

      He did at least one two page spread in X-Force #1 which was a direct take from Perez on Tales of the Teen Titans and another from Ronin #1, but I seem to recall him crediting the Ronin take.

      • J. Andrew World says:

        Glenn, That was New Mutants #100 where he ripped off Ronin, and he also used Jim Lee's layout from the X-Men issue where Wolverine teams up with Captain America durring World War II in an early x-force issue. And then there was the cover of some book he did which he was sued over because he did a painting of a photo from an ad. I forget the details.

  2. RD Francis says:

    Sadly enough, when I saw the miniaturized version of the Liefeld image, I actually said to myself, "What's a Byrne image doing on this story?" Although, the story it brought to mind was actually something from DC's LEGENDS, I think – the bit where they have a StarBrand parody take on GL (with actual Byrne art).RD Francis

  3. Michael Davis says:

    Here's my problem with all this stuff, NO Rob is not the greatest artist who ever walked the earth. But Rob was a part of something that very few people can claim. He and the other Image guys changed the industry and were the first real 'pop' stars to come out of comics. I think a lot of the 'hate Rob' glee that comes from people who are just plain jealous. By the way-those 'drawing' that piss so many people off SOLD millions so who's the idiot Rob for drawing that way or the people who payed for it? Before you give me the 'comics are art' speech let me enlighten you-art is in the eye of the beholder and if you judge it just by what someone would pay for a piece (like the millions of dollars paid for a Picasso) the Rob is one of the greatest artists ever.

    • Anonymous says:

      I was in middle school when I first saw Liefeld's drawings, I was not planning on entering comics at all, and I STILL could tell that something was seriously wrong there. I know that art is in the eye of the beholder, but I will never understand how his stuff was so popular. I ended up with comics he'd drawn only because i enjoyed some of the stories… but his art was hard to follow and just pissed me off. As for other artists being jealous, no. If they're a better artist than he is they have a RIGHT to be upset that he was making millions and they weren't. It's just as frustrating as anyone who has a jackass boss making the big bucks while the company's product suffers and you know that you can do a better job. The mistakes are obvious and you know that pretty soon the customers will figure out what's going on and stop buying your product. And lo and behold, people did. :/

      • Anonymous says:

        Dang, you are so right. That's why I'm looking for a new boss now. This is what I am going through at work, and while I don't care about the money, I'm sick of working with people who are threatened by competence. And Rob Liefeld sucks. You know what's really sucky? MILESTONE had art 50 times better than anything IMAGE ever put out, and they've only had half the media deals and none of the attention from comics fans. The writing and art on STATIC are incredible. Now, compare that to SHIT like WILDCATS. (Hey, I like some of the characters, but it's shit. Let's be real.) I started buying old IMAGE and MILESTONE in the bargain bins in the late 1990's when I got a real job and could buy whatever I wanted. I liked both, but I can assure you, major quality difference, and I didn't have any preconceptions (never even heard of CABLE). Of course, I did have some years of art training. ~_^

        • Anonymous says:

          milestone was black, and fanboys are racist.

          • Anonymous says:

            Fanboys aren't racist. They're homophobes because everything Milestone put out was gay and SUCKED HARD. I love the comments on this thread. I hope this thread makes it into the Library of Congress. Fanboys are racist… that's why the Spiderman Obama issue went into 5 printings. For every 2 intelligent comments here there are 5 idiotic ones. At least Doomchan had enough balls to use a name. If you're going to make a sweeping, outdated generalization of people use your name, Milestone sissy.

          • Russ Rogers says:

            Racist? Really? Static Shock was a TV show, and a pretty good one too. I've read that DC has plans to bring the Milestone characters into the DC multi-verse.Was it racism that made "Barbwire" such a bad movie? Why didn't "The Elementals" get a movie or TV deal? Racism?I think saying Milestone was Black and then attributing any bad luck, lack of press coverage or lack of sales to racism is simplistic and silly. There are lots of reasons Comic Imprints don't last. Racism is low on the list of reasons.What happened to Impact Comics, featuring "The Fly," "The Shield" and "The Black Hood"? Did that fold up because the Hood was too Black?What happened to Marvel's "New Universe"? What happened to Dark Horse's Greatest World?I'm not denying that racism exists. I'm am just saying that you can't make the conclusion that "fanboys are racist" based on the fact that Milestone didn't have the success you think it deserved. I'm a fanboy. On a scale of 1 to 10, how racist am I for arguing this point?

          • m. Alvarez says:

            I wouldn't put a lot of thought into anon's post… You made good points. I was going to ask that idiot why the Spider-Man Obama issue went into 5 printings if fanboys were "racist". For the guy to use such a sweeping generalization and not have the balls to use his name really deflates his comment. I look at it as a joke. This thread has gotten pretty low brow.

        • Nman says:

          Static sucked and Milestone sucked. Please.

        • Jado says:

          Milestone was damn good – I loved STATIC

    • DOOMchan says:

      Micheal Davis is an idiot.

    • Anonymous says:

      You are exactly the type of person who would enjoy Rob's work. "Art is in the eye of the beholder"? Thanks for enlightening me – I needed that enlightenment.Poorly constructed scenes, no sense of composition, no classical training, no drive for improvement, complete lack of artistic eye, horribly lacking in creativity, dumb.There's no beholder here to eye anything. If there was one, Rob's money would be given to the poor, and he'd be sent to hell for taking advantage of the ignorant and dull-witted.

      • Jason says:

        If by classical training you mean, like the ,modern classical realists (graydon parrish, jacob collins) well theres not a damn artist in the industry like that, or, do you mean he didn't take any shitty art classes in the american university system that doesn't teach squat about drawing anything except post-pollick scribbling?

        • matt says:

          Excuse me? Shitty art classes in the American University system? I really have no idea what you are talking about here. If you mean some undeclared taking a casual art class in some University like a state college or something then ok sure. But to say that there are no reputable or capable art colleges in America, then that is just a stupid comment and I'm sure a lot of artists in the comic industry have gone to fine art schools. Having gone to a decent art school, I know a great deal of people who are accomplished artists who were my class mates.

    • Anonymous says:

      Rob sold millions, yes. So did Milli Vanilli.

      • Adam T says:

        has Rob improved in his art ability over the years? I mean really improved, look at artists like Keven Maguire, Bart Sears (who does not like to draw by the way) to name a couple look at there early stuff and you see there drastic improvement Rob on the other hand really did not. I did not and still do not respect him as an artist but who cares what I think. I feel he was in the right place at the right time, and he knew the right people, simple as that

    • R Check says:

      He helped change the industry… for the worse. Who's the idiot? Rob, yes. The people who bought it? Also YES. What kind of argument is that? Rob and his fans are idiots. "Comics are art" speech… uh, you just gave the "art speech" with that eye of the beholder stuff. And, no, people don't judge good art by what was paid for it… obviously. Rob Leafhead also made more money writing than Shakespeare… doesn't make him a good writer. Vanilla Ice was a chart topping artist who sold millions. He made far more money than Mozart and Beethoven combined! McDonalds has sold billions of burgers, that doesn't make it the height of cuisine. The ol' jealous argument, riiiight. If you dislike something of poor quality that some other snapperhead likes… it's because you're jealous. That argument has never worked, doesn't now, and never will.

    • Martin Stephenson says:

      He’s not my cup of tea, his lack of artistic creativity, not just restricted
      to light boxing everything, but doing his version of any new or old
      interesting character is a little annoying.
      Still I tend to agree with Neal Adams thinking that there’s room for

  4. RD Francis says:

    OK, now I've actually read the article.Now, I'll be the first to admit that I don't think Liefeld is generally a very good artist. As Michael says, he's been a *successful* artist, but that doesn't make some of his illustrations painfully uncomfortable to look at.That said:a) Rob is hardly the only artist to draw women in anatomically impossible poses (or simply with impossible anatomy).b) One can make an argument that certain features (the way he deals with feet) are simply Rob's style. I mean, where's the website with fifteen pictures complaining about how Jack Kirby couldn't draw normal fingers and always made the square at the ends?c) The most significant (to me, at least) complaints about Rob's artwork are those regarding how well the artwork tells the story. That, after all, is the goal of art in comics. And, as I recall, that was one of the things long-time fans were complaining about in the nineties. And, as I look at these pictures, Rob's work doesn't seem to be the worst of the lot as far as that goes. Many of the "hotter" artists of the nineties would seemingly produce at least 50% of their pages with the idea of selling the original art. That lead to a preponderance of splash pages with characters posing for pin-ups. Yes, there are some badly posed figures in these examples; but even many of those look like they adequately serve the story.d) I think very few people (possibly including Rob himself) would be willing to say that Rob writes well, or that he works well as the primary story plotter. Complaints about the writing quality are a completely different topic, and shouldn't be mixed in with complaints about his art.e) How could he possibly have skipped CAPTAIN AMERICA (Heroes Reborn version) #1? I think that's the issue I'm thinking of – the one where we have scenes where Steve Rogers appears to be roughly 9 feet tall, and (elsewhere) to have a 90-inch chest?f) Are all the FF shots coming from Onslaught: Reborn? If so, I may actually take a look at that; those are some of the shots where the complaints don't really even seem valid to me (OK, except for the fact that it really does look like that gun just happens to be floating next to Franklin's hand on the last image). I'd avoided it on general principles, as I don't normally tolerate Rob's art, but if these are the worst images from the mini-series, it might actually be readable. Of course, that's up to Jeph Loeb as well….RD Francis

  5. Luigi Novi says:

    As much as I and my classmates detested Rob's artwork when we were in art school (this was at the height of his fame in the early 90's), I think the article overstates its case. Looking to art from your favorite creators for inspiration, and in some cases, to figure out to how to do a certain pose or composition, is COMMONPLACE. Singling out Liefeld is stupid. My friend Chris Batista, who got his big break when we overlapped at the School of Visual Arts, often had issues of books by Jose Luis Garcia Lopez or Michael Golden when penciling pages at SVA's media center. He didn't necessarily copy things as often as Liefeld did, but the article implies that the top panel is "not Rob's art". Of course it is. It's simply rendered "after" a previous artist. As for the comment about him not giving "credit", it's not commonplace to give such credit in-panel, where it might be seen and distract from the art. By contrast, it is common on COVERS, and when Liefeld drew the cover of the New Mutants issue where Sunspot leaves, he did INDEED credit Byrne, since he modeled it after the cover of Uncanny X-Men #138, when Cyclops left after Phoenix's death, signing it "Liefeld After Byrne".Liefeld may have a lot to be criticized for, but it sometimes it becomes so easy to lob criticism at such public figures that some people lose perspective, and become self-righteous in the way they lose all sense of proportion when doing so.

  6. Alan Coil says:

    20 years later and his art hasn't improved one bit. That's one of the biggest reasons people hate his work. Youthful inadequacies can be forgiven. Being the same inept guy as 20 years ago is not so forgivable. If he were getting older, or perpetually ill, people would forgive his lack of improvement, or even decline in skills.

    • Michael Davis says:

      Alan,He's simply not for everybody but you do make a valid point . But again, my issue is that NO ONE ever gives him props for what he has done FOR COMICS! Love him or hate him Ringo still helped change music. Rob helped change comics.

      • Glenn Hauman says:

        I'll give Rob Liefeld credit for changing comics in the same way that I'll give Robert Moses credit for changing New York. Paraphrasing his biographer, he changed things so much we can not tell whether New York would have been better or worse without him, only that it would have been different. If nothing else, his role in creating Image– and his later damaging of the same company– cements his place in comics history.

        • Michael Davis says:

          He was part of something that NO ONE did before. No one. He and the other Image guys presented a ROCK STAR status in comics that simply was not there before. If that's not a good change for the biz then Viagra is not good for porn.

          • Glenn Hauman says:

            So Rob Liefeld was good in that it made things look better while in reality people were just getting screwed a lot more? And as a result, a lot of hucksters got into the business hocking shoddy wares and overflowing my inbox with junk filled with misspellings?Hmm. Good analogy after all.

          • Michael Davis says:

            P U T D O W N TH E PIPE!!

          • Adam T says:

            He was part of something, you talk like he did all this stuff solo, and the other Image guys were powerhouse artists that blew his work out of the water. There styles were different from each other but my god they at least knew the basic foundation of art before they broke the rules to get the effects they wanted. But he was young back then the question that I want to ask is this how is his art now?

          • mike weber says:

            Actually, most of the original Image artists were all flash and technique and very little basic structure, as i recall.It was a long time ago, though…

        • Vinnie Bartilucci says:

          "I'll give Rob Liefeld credit for changing comics in the same way that I'll give Robert Moses credit for changing New York."I don't think anyone who hasn't lived in New York knows exactly how vicious and scathing a statement that was…

      • Steve Atkins says:

        How about this:"Rob Liefeld was a thief AND a terrorist. On the other hand, he did a lot for comics and had a tremendous singing voice."Sorry…that line just popped into my head….

  7. Kneon Transitt says:

    Liefeld got me buying superhero books. He's certainly not the greatest artist that ever lived (not by a, uh, Longshot) but there's no denying his stuff hit the right chords with the kids back in the day. I don't think a Levi's commercial was the sole reason his books sold as well as they did.'Sides, anybody that can make THAT much money in comics needs to be given a medal. Regardless of quality. Seriously. Most of today's creators can only wish their books sold like Rob's.

  8. Anonymous says:

    I remember many years ago a comic store owner showing me several pages from Japanese anime comic books side-by-side with selected Liefeld drawings. He's truly an amazing visual plagirist.

  9. Steve Atkins says:

    My main problems with Rob Liefeld are as follows:1) He's lazy and sloppy with his artwork. The panels in the article that showed Liefeld's after-thought of drawing a gun in someone's hand that clearly wasn't holding a gun in the first place show this quite blatantly. I have noticed that this is not a couple of islolated incidents…it seems to be Liefeld's habit.2) He doesn't keep his deadlines/promises. The internet is filled with stories (both true and false-but-believed) about his inability to deliver to the fanbase AND the publishers he makes deals with.3) His artwork has not developed beyond its initial "doodling fanboy stage." That combined with his aforementioned laziness has prevented me from buying anything that he has/had put out.4) He is an ass. This is not based on any heresay or rumor. This is not based on any desire on my part to join the I-HATE-ROB-LIEFELD-SOCIETY. This is based on the conversation I had with him once at a convention. I met him, spoke with him, and expeienced what he was like personally and in person.I don't like him.By contrast, I met Todd McFarlane later during the exact same set of circumstances and I found the meeting to be a pleasant experience. The conversation was interesting, but brief (more brief than with Liefeld, actually). The funny thing is….I am not particularly a fan of Todd McFarlane, either. I like SOME of his work, but his name alone was never enough to sell me on any particular book. He was, however, a really nice guy.

    • Anonymous says:

      "His artwork has not developed beyond its initial 'doodling fanboy stage.'" Bingo. This is what I detest about his success. He is, in fact, untrained and unskilled. I am absolutely appalled that anyone can take this as artwork.

  10. Anonymous says:

    In response to Luigi's comment: I appreciate the concept that artists look to other artists for inspiration. No one lives in a vacuum. However, there is a difference between art referencing and art copying. Liefeld is guilty of the latter, which, to me, demeans him as an artist and a person. His propensity to steal art from his colleagues reflects negatively on his moral character, as well as his professional standards. That, and the fact that he has consistently delivered late, unpolished work leads me to conclude that all criticism of him presented so far is accurate and justified.So, basically, he and Greg Land are tools.

  11. Steven says:

    I posted the link on Rob's official site and got banned from ever using his forum again. That says a lot about him. Instead of coming out and replying to the mail he just banned me. The guy is as overrated as Britney Spears. Sure, his books sold millions, but has anyone really sat down and asked themselves "why?". There was a collectors boom back then and he cashed in on it. And that is all he did. He can't write a comic to save his life. His art really stinks. And he isn't man enough to stand up for himself when someone is taking him on.The guy is an ass…and he has never seen a woman before in his life. End of story

  12. Anonymous says:

    That seems unlikely, given the amount of women on Earth. Maybe he suffers from the same short-term memory loss that goldfish do, and after carefully studying anatomical proportions, quickly forgets them and draws deformed piles of muscle posing as humans with a shit-ton of cross-hatching.

  13. Anonymous says:

    I think Liefeld gets a raw deal because of the fact he was a success very early on in his career without paying his "dues". Everything else is sour grapes. People want to complain about his artistic choice of style or proportions or what have you for the sole reason to assure themselves that their time in comics will come. He has become this galvanizing rod that attracts wannabe artists to demean his work to put over their own. There is no such thing as a Great artist or a Bad artist. I enjoy Liefeld's work for the style and dynamic enthusiasm that I don't see in some of your more favorite artists. If Liefeld is the worst, who constitues as great? John Cassady with his 3 feet long necks? Bryan Hitch..(or Alan Davis in disguise)? How about Steve Epting and the faces that looked like they were just dug out of a mortuary?

  14. Russ Rogers says:

    I think some of the criticism of Rob Liefeld's art is a criticism of style. Yes, Liefeld draws MASSIVE male figures with HUGE guns and character after character has a costume with tons of pouches and a backpack. His females have MASSIVE TITS and teeny-tiny, corseted waists. The anatomy is preposterous. His crosshatching and shadows appear random and arbitrary. But his style is distinctive. There is something that screams, "This is a ROB LIEFELD drawing!" I think his male and female bodies are caricatures, not characterizations. But Liefeld isn't that interested in portraying what is plausible or possible. His heroes look like Megaton Man or the Tick, without any sense of comic irony. But that's OK. It's his style. He has made his own set of clichés. It's a very distinctive style. And here's where it's hard to argue about it. It sells! You can say "They Might Be Giants" are a smarter, more musical, creative, clever, insightful, emotional, in short a more talented and objectively BETTER band than "Menudo", "New Kids on the Block" or the "Back Street Boys." But … who has sold more records? In the one case, someone is trying to make art. In the other case, someone is trying to make commerce. And there is nothing wrong with that. There is nothing wrong with trying to sell to an audience. Bubble-gum pop is kitsch and cool. Art is not a zero sum game. Just because the Back Street Boys sell a TON of albums, that doesn't make They Might Be Giants sell less.At one time the Beatles were as much of a bubble-gum band as any other boy band, but after they conquered Pop they went on to transcend and become the most influential musical presence in the 20th Century. (Yeah, I said it. And I'm will to stand behind that hyperbole!) I think that without the massive early commercial success, the Beatles wouldn't have had the platform to create the truly experimental, avant garde and influential works that came later.It was the commercial success of Daredevil that gave Frank Miller the platform to create the Dark Knight stuff and Sin City. Miller went on and forged a whole new set of clichés. Lots of whores with swastikas.Now, you might criticize Liefeld for not trying to use his platform of success to blaze new trails. You might say that he hasn't used his success to expand the art form. Maybe he doesn't want to do that. Maybe he's not capable of that. Does it matter? Does he have to?I went to the list of the 40 Worst Rob Liefeld Drawings. I was disturbed by the authors take on #22: "I will bet money that this picture was traced from child pornography. I have never seen a drawing of lips make me feel as creepy as looking at this does."Liefeld's drawing doesn't remind me of child pornography. To suggest that Liefeld watches child porn and then TRACES it. That's just TOO defamatory to be anywhere near tasteful. Was the author making a joke? Joking about child pornography doesn't seem very funny. I was seriously put off by this.#19 is a comentary on a splash page featuring the Thing and the Human torch. The author seems to find this image sexual too: "Now for a tasteful splash page of the Human Torch fucking The Thing missionary-style! Splash page? More like SLASH page, am I right!"Note the Torch’s full, supple buttocks. If this isn’t a drawing of a naked guy on fire anally violating a semi-nude grotesquery in midair I don’t know comic books! The Thing’s blow-up-doll mouth is also kind of disturbing, as is the fact that he kinda looks like he’s pretty into it. Never would have figured Ben Grimm to be a bottom, but there you have it."At least they’re face-to-face, so you know this ain’t just some cheap fuck; there’s some passion involved at least. Work those nipples, Johnny! Work them good!"I didn't find this picture erotic or homo-erotic. And again, this kind of commentary is crass, sophomoric, UNfunny and far STUPIDER than anything he is trying to criticize in Rob Liefeld's art. If there is an argument to be made, if you want to score points in a debate, this AIN'T the way to do it.Being critical is fine, if you have something constructive in your criticism. But pulling out random panels and finding that they coincidentally remind the author of pedophilia or homo-eroticism says MORE about the author than the art itself. It's just not fair commentary. And again, it's NOT funny. It's just crude and distracting.I think what irks people isn't that Rob Liefeld's art is bad. It's that they see it as bad AND outselling what they think is better art. Yeah, Steve Rude is a WAY better artist than Rob Liefeld. Hell, so is Terry Beatty. Both deserve to have boatloads more success and money than they have. But that's not Liefeld's fault. The tastes of the public are fickle and sometimes shallow. There is a tendency for the lowest common denominator to receive the highest reward. Sex and Violence sell. Gross exaggerations of sex and violence sell even better. Oh well. Should we blame the artist? Should we blame the ignorant masses? Should we blame the "corporate machine" that seems to be more interested in making money than elevating and enlightening the human condition?Nah. That's just the way it is. That would be like shouting at the wind for blowing. That would be like blaming tires for being round. The best we can do is read what we like, think about WHY we like it and WHAT we like about it, and then, PROMOTE what we DO like. Being negative is easy. Finding out what you like and promoting that is harder, but it's a far more worthy goal!

    • Glenn Hauman says:

      I'll concede that you may have a point on fan reaction. But the pro reaction isn't much different. Very few people seem to want to hire Rob nowadays. Can't be because the books are late, there are later artists who are getting work. He's just been writing checks with his attitude that his work can't cash.True story: on my almost-first day as a pro, I went straight from my interview at DC Comics to the DC softball game. The other team forfeited (Late Night With David Letterman ended up taping late) and so we all practiced. One editor stepped up to the plate and was hitting weakly, and somebody yelled for him to think of a freelancer that was causing him trouble. The editor tossed the ball up into the air, bellowed "ROB LIEFELD!", and smacked the ball into deep left field. That was early in Rob's career. His rep has not improved.

      • Russ Rogers says:

        I can't say anything about Rob Liefeld's rep. I'm not an insider. His style is distinctive though. That's to his credit. I can't say that I really like it. I find that I'm drawn to the clean lines of Steve Rude, Terry Beatty, Jeff Smith, Mike Parobeck or C.C. Beck. Liefeld's figures are preposterous; they are caricatures. And Liefeld does have a problem drawing feet. That is obvious. He finds excuses to hide feet or else his characters sometimes have odd ballet poses with pointed toes. But, I just don't see where the VENOM in comments like, "I will bet money that this picture was traced from child pornography," comes from. A line like that implies a bitterness and bile that goes way beyond art criticism. That's just plain nasty!I just read the Wikipedia article about Liefeld. It illuminates some of the controversy surrounding Liefeld. For his part, Liefeld seems by turns arrogant and disarmingly self effacing.

  15. Larz says:

    A LOT of artists SUCK in my opinion. Gene Colon was always a let down for me (if I bought a back issue and opened it to find out he was the artist I would have just boxed it)… Sal Buscema "phoned in" a lot of really well-written Hulk issues, Bill Siekewicz (how the hell do you spell that guys name?) ruined the NEW MUTANTS for me way back in the day and basically scared me away from comics. Back in the eighties I loved John Byrne, but now his art looks like he's drawing with an El Marko. Comic art is just a reflection of what's acceptable by the fans, and I'm sure when Iron Man #1 came out with Gene's ball point "everyone-looks-like-a-scared-asian" style, it might have been refreshing, but now looks to me like someone dipped kitty's paws in ink and let him scratch all over the paper. Good for Rob in making a living probably doing what he did best, if he had drawn The X-Men back in 1985 I probably would have kept reading it. In closing Barry Windsor Smith is the biggest asshole I've ever worked for and Bob Layton is one of the most underrated comic talents ever. Now thee was a guy who had proportions and metal DOWN… yet never seemed to have reached the George Perez status he deserved. Russ made a good call with Steve Rude, goddamn give that guy Mighty Avengers or New Avengers already!

  16. Anonymous says:

    I like how Rob's only changes were to hide the character's feet and added a bunch of unnecessary lines.

  17. Tiffany says:

    While I do not read comics as much as the next guy, I do draw, and I have taken art. Not that it says much, but I've seen a lot of stuff, a lot of fads, and a lot of styles. Stuff drawn by DiVinci is by far more detailed and realistic than anything done by Jackson Pollock, but depending on what circle of art critics you are talking to they are both equally great, and both revolutionized the art scene when they hit it.After looking over Rob's work, one can see that a lot of what people don't like about him involves just his style, which is purely subjective. Some of the comments too about his work were just plain unfair and un-constructive. Anybody can make a child-porn refrence about anything. Doesn't make it valid or funny. What really gets me about a glance at this guy's stuff however is the half-assed way a lot of these things have been drawn. The backgrounds are left out in favor of making his characters stand out more- fine, the character is the focal point, but when I can't even tell if his characters are supposed to be in the same room because the backgrounds are inconsistent, well…that just seems to show me he didn't care enough to finish his work. Place where lines don't meet up, clearly added-in-later details. It speaks of a man who wanted to get his stuff out of his office as soon as possible. You guys are telling me he can't keep a deadline? It certainly doesn't show in his work.

  18. Anonymous says:

    As Tiffany just stated, it really is the sloppiness factor that really stands out most to my eye. I am completely fine with toying with anatomy and perspective for dramatic effect, but it does bother me when something looks tacked on after the fact, a common feature of Rob Liefeld drawings. By contrast, Jack Davis prefers working in caricature, and his drawings if anything suffer from an overabundance of detail, yet one of his drawings will typically feature LESS glaringly obvious tacked in details than a given Liefeld work. With Liefeld I don't even get the sense that the guy gives a crap sometimes.

  19. Anonymous says:

    my favorite thing about this swipe is, that even though the original Byrne piece has feet, Liefeld managed to lengthen Sunfire's legs just long enough so that they were off-panel in his version.

  20. jin kim says:

    I never really paid close attention to the Image craze, just remember that commercial with spike lee that cast Liefeld as some sort of autodidact god-child… And his arrogant remark that he could draw an egg and people would line up to buy it. Now that I've taken a closer look, I am appalled by the complete absence of anything that resembles artistic merit in his work.keeping in mind that there is a production process involved that usually involves an inker and a colorist, I would think at some point someone would say something about Liefeld's intensely problematic lack of basic illustrative competence. I can't believe people actually inked and colored his less than child-like breakdowns… never mind that people actually paid money for it.My biggest problem with Liefeld and secondarily guys like Mcfarland and Lee… they contributed greatly to taking all the artistic merit out of the creation and enjoyment of comics. They were definitely the Britney Spears of comics, Liefeld the most glaring example. More, I don't think you can compare Kirby's or Ditko's artistic idiosyncrasies with a complete lack of ability. Those guys were pioneers. And yes, perhaps a hand or arm doesn't really look the way Kirby or Ditko drew them, but these were stylistic vehicles, not an inherent inability to draw a hand as a hand really looks. Liefeld simply cannot draw a hand…or an egg for that matter.His later work does not reflect any significant improvement, either. He defies the basic principle that we all improve at anything we do from repetition and practice.

  21. Anonymous says:

    The man is a hack, pure and simple, with no artistic training.He is also a thief:

  22. Anonymous says:

    The problem wasn't so much that he was a terrible artist (he was though). It was that he was so damn successful despite being such. He really was awful and he made MILLIONS. Someone at Marvel must have had a personal hard on for the guy. that's the only reason why, someone who penciled shit that a middle schooler would be embarrassed to publish, could be so damn popular. Though I think people loved Cable so much that they didn't care. I always hated his art even back in the early 90's. Hated most of Image too.

  23. Michael Davis says:

    DOOMchan said, " Micheal Davis is an idiot.'Yep, it says so on my Ph.D.

    • DOOMchan says:

      Lol, how silly. Having a Ph.D doesn't make you intelligent, especially if it was given to you as a present for telling little kids to not do drugs like every other wholesome, child friendly cliche on television. Oh please, go get a PhD from MIT if you want to brag about intellect from such a shallow point of view.

      • Michael Davis says:

        First- as Yogi Berra said (goggle him) "It's not bragging if you do it." Second if I did get it from as you say ' telling little kids to not do drugs like every other wholesome, child friendly cliche on television; I'd be OK with that. That's not why I got it but it would be OK with me. Regarding intellect-trust me you don't want to go there. Also I don't brag, I just refuse to let people define me so I tell them what they may not know. About my 'shallow' point of view…MAJOR corporations and academic institutions pay me a GRIP to hear that shallow point of view sooo I'm OK with that also. OK OK I'll 'brag' just a bit…women love me.There you go. Now I have to go and take my shallow point of view X-mas shopping hopefully I'll find some kids I can tell to stay off drugs or websites where the risk of getting their feelings hurt by a motherfucker who does not take any shit from people who have nothing to offer in turns of substance than 'LOL how silly'Have a nice day ;)

  24. Anonymous says:

    Damn, DOOMchan, Michael Davis just straight up served you! Are you going to sit there like a punk and take it like that? Michael Davis just made you his BITCH dawg. You going to let that fly? Straight up DOOMchan, you need to make things right QUICK cause Michael Davis is the dude on the 3 year old thread turning you out like a ho! And Michael Davis must be blowing up cause he is ON this thread 24/7 AND getting money thrown at him. You need to settle this score DOOMchan. Don't walk out looking like a school girl homes. Come back with something. Don't let THE Michael Davis slam you like that dawg. Michael Davis is the straight up KING of SLING and he made you his little Tiger Woods HO on the internet in front of BILLIONS.

    • Michael Davis says:

      I love a good debate but don't start off calling a guy (me) an idiot, that's just bad form. Can't we just get along…?

      • Anonymous says:

        Oh wow, I just happened across this, as I was looking to link a Rob Liefeld article to a mate of mine, and happened to look at the comments… That DOOMchan guy sounds like this guy on DeviantArt, who goes by the same name ( I am almost certain he spends all his time trolling people on there, and I myself have had a couple of run ins with him, which I will admit that I started, simply because he is so easy to throw off his game — although he has since apparently blocked me? Wow. LOL! I guess he finally figure I was fucking with him ;)Really though, have not thought about him in a while. Very funny. I wouldn't be surprised if the Anon above is either him or one of his silly dick worshippers.

        • Anonymous says:

          The anon above was stooping to Doomchan's level to see if M.D. would take the high road. Don't read "Catcher in the Rye" you'll get lost after 3 pages. Stick with Super Friends. You must have a lot going on if you're walking around thinking about thread "throw downs"… Oh, there it is, that glazed look in your eyes… I already lost you… Okay, start from the top again. It's all about the comprehension. Now I miss Michael Davis' posts.

    • DOOMchan says:

      Aw man, I didn't see this silly reply till just now.Michael, why are you posting as anonymous defending your silly self? lmfao

  25. Anonymous says:

    Liefield=overrated. Nothing all that deep about it. He's not the Anti-Christ, or a child molester like someone else said. People how really didn't know the difference or were't really concerned about the details of his work liked his stuff. As someone who got into comics around the time he was popular, I have to admit I was one of those people. Looking at his work now, I can tell he was seriously lacking in skill.In his defence though, was he trained? Because if he had the desire I think he could improve. As is I really think he's gotten worse. Also these is no way I would lump Jim Lee in with this guy.

  26. Shawn OB says:

    Good point. I think he has a knowledge of shading and light – which disguises the fact that he can't draw a human figure at any angle other than facing forward. I think the people that lash out at him for sucking so hard are jealous that he "made it" in the comic book field. I'm sure that John Byrne, who did X-Men spreads for $900 back in 1978 wanted to put his head through a TV screen every time he saw Liefeld's crap. Jim Lee, Silvestri, even Capullo – all those guys can draw circles around Liefeld. Liefeld should have been an inker. But I'm not one to talk either, I never got to draw a comic book.

  27. m. Alvarez says:

    Rob did the cartoon drawings for the Carolina Cheerleaders Exposed DVD. He was signing copies in Phoenix last year. Doesn't look like his career is going the way he thought it would.

  28. Miles Vorkosigan says:

    I've got to agree with Mouse's assessment of Liefeld. He's overrated, but not Satan. He's a hell of a self-promoter, but so's Stan Lee. And yes, there are bunches of artists out there who are miles better than Rob, both living and dead. Be happy to give you a list of my favorites, starting with Alex Ross. Want more? Adam Kubert, Joe Kubert, Jack Kirby, Carmine Infantino, Adam Hughes, Karl Story, Steve Rude, Tom Artis, Mike Smith, Phil Foglio, Mac Raboy, Neal Adams, Jeff Butler, Wally Wood, Will Eisner, Ed Benes, Gil Kane, Gene Colan…The point is, yes, all these guys can draw rings around Liefeld at his best, but he's got the profile. Why? Because we bitch about how bad he is, and so keep him in the public eye. Want to make Mr. Suck-ass Scribbler go away? Ignore him. I don't hate him, though. Really don't have much feeling for him one way or another. Speaking from a technical aspect, quite a few artists since the advent of Liefeld and MacFarlane have cluttered up the pages with too much crap. Their work is way too busy, and I'm old-fashioned enough to prefer a clean panel with little to distract me from the action. Pretty rare these days, I'm afraid. Damned few artists or inkers now who can do a page without slathering all manner of junk on the backgrounds to distract the eye.Sorry to rant, but hey, that seems to be what this thread is for.As to anatomically unlikely poses or bodies on women, or men for that matter, hey, the idea at the time was to exaggerate the physical aspects of the characters. The Mighty Marvel Method taken to absurdity. And now it's the standard. Want to fix that, just dig out Burne Hogarth and learn how to do it right. Can't tell a story panel to panel, dig out Eisner and learn how again. The old masters knew what they were doing. If you think Buscema and Frazetta were the be-all and end-all in illustration, find out what their influences were, and learn.Because as Mark Knopfler once said, if you don't know where you're coming from, you can't know where you're going.

  29. Miles Vorkosigan says:

    Okay… I went to the page that generated this thread, and, I gotta admit, Liefeld's a pretty crappy illustrator. He fits my criteria for the job of hack, anyway. But I have seen worse. There's no real excuse for a lot of what he does. But he can study, and improve. With the kind of money he has, though, he doesn't have to, and our howling about how much we hate him isn't going to change the fact that he's stupidly rich and sells comics like there's no tomorrow.So at this point, shutting the fuck up seems like a logical move.

  30. Anonymous says:

    @ michael davis.Skimming the above comments I notice you compare Liefeld with Ringo Starr. Well I've got news for you, Ringo could play the drums. Quite well in fact. Liefeld cannot draw in an even semi-competent manner, so based on this comment, and taking into account your defense of Liefeld, one must draw the conclusion that you are a mentally retarded individual. No offense intended, in fact you've actually done quite well for yourself, using the internet and all. Your mom must be proud.

    • mike weber says:

      "Ringo could play the drums. Quite well, in fact."Which is why he always had to fake a roll with a bunch of fast shots.And why much of the Beatles' early recorded output featured session drummers.

  31. Anonymous says:

    …and Ringo laughed his way all the way to the bank. Ringo Starr could buy the street you live on, have it bulldozed, and turn it into a parking lot for Smart Cars. I think it's safe to say Ringo could "play the drums" effectively. I have never bought a Beatles CD and laughed at how ridiculous Ringo's drumming was. I have bought a Rob Liefeld comic and laughed at how lop sided Captain America's shield was or how a woman's legs were 5 feet long and she had a double D chest. A few years ago I read "Doom Force" and came to the conclusion that everybody in the industry thinks Liefeld is a joke. I recommend everyone do the same and let this thread die a quiet death.

    • mike weber says:

      Ringo was a mediocre drummer who lucked into a group with talented musicians.Liefeld is less talented than that.Are you old enough to remember the original releases of the Beatles' music?About those Beatles CDs – which i bought on vinyl as the originally came out – listen carefully to the arrangements and production. Then listen to some albums by, say, the Who or Cream from the same period. Or even the Moody Blues (to pick another example), or Led Zeppelin. If you listen honestly, you'll realise that the Beatles albums are arranged and produced in such a way as to de-emphasise the fact that Ringo isn't in the same league as Moon, Baker, Edge or Bonham.(We won't even bring Frank Zappa's succession of drummers – Jimmy Carl Black, Billy Mundi, Aynsley Dunbar, Terry Bozzio, etc … or non-rock drummers like Gene Krupa, Buddy Rich or Elvin Jones … into the discussion.)Nothing wrong with that. And he's certainly better (in terms of his field) than Liefield will ever be.

      • Glenn Hauman says:

        I call shenanigans. Ringo started with the Beatles in 1962. The Who didn't hit until '65, Cream didn't exist until '66.Ringo is well aware of his own technical limitations, but he ain't that bad and a number of people have cited him as an influence.

        • mike weber says:

          I didn't say they were all precisely contemporary – i was just picking examples at random. And i wasn't being negative about Ringo – just pointing out that even if he's not the Rob Liefeld of drummers, he's not the Will Eisner, either.And more than one musician has cited Joey or Johnny Ramone as influences, too, and much as i love the Ramones' music, i wouldn't call either one more than competent musically … it's the gestalt that counts.(Speaking of drummers from that period – the original drummer for my favourite English Invasion group – Mick Avory of the Kinks – was fired by the Rolling Stones because he couldn't keep the beat. And the label insisted on a session drummer for their early recordings, too.)

          • Tim says:

            For what it's worth, the only early Beatles recordings that Ringo is known to not have played on after he joined were Love Me Do and PS I Love You. This was only days after he'd even joined the band, and George Martin didn't think he had the chops. From then on (up until the White Album when he briefly left the band) it's well documented that Ringo played on all their records. He's far from technical, but really none of them were technical players, particularly in the early days. He kept a steady beat, he certainly developed a distinct style, and above all he was consistent. Liefeld can't even be counted on to get the number of fingers on a hand right.

      • Russ Rogers says:

        "Ringo was a mediocre drummer who lucked into a group with talented musicians."Are you serious, Mike? Ringo continues to exude a charm from both behind and in front of the drums. He wrote "Octopus' Garden" and "It Don't Come Easy." He's the only member of the Beatles to have the charm and talent to have all three other members play on his solo albums. "Ringo" is as good a solo album as any other Beatles solo effort. Yeah, quality stuff, right up there with "Imagine"" or "Venus and Mars" or "Cloud 9."Then let's talk about Ringo Starr's All-Star Band … The All-Star Band keeps touring again and again, with star after star joining up. Why? Because A) Ringo is a freakin' legend. B) he's a very likable fellow. C) he's more than a passable drummer. He literally has set the standard.And Ringo has not just sat back and toured the oldies. He's regularly comes out with quality new albums. He's put out 6 new albums in the last 12 years. That's pretty regular and consistent new work. Pete Best was lucky to play with talented musicians. Name one song Pete Best wrote or sang. Ringo is more than a drummer. He's a songwriter. He's an actor. He's a celebrity. He's an entertainer. He's a Beatle! The man is a Legend, and he's earned that.Yeah, you can offer up other drummers who may have technically superior skills. But nobody else has a resume, style, charm, charisma or magic like Ringo. Nobody.Liefeld, on the other hand, has trouble drawing feet.

        • mike weber says:

          I didn't say that Ringo wasn't a great performer. He was and (so far as i know) still is.But you can be a great performer and still be a mediocre technical drummer.And if Ringo had stayed where he was – well, right off hand, i can't remember the name of the band.Maybe i was a little overstated, but Ringo's big break was hooking up with the other three.And the others i mentioned – Moon and Bonham seem to have been bughouse crazy, and i hear that Baker spent a lot of time in a haze.s Pinkard & Bowden sad: "…if Elvis and Buddy and Jerry LeeWere all so great why is only one of threeStill livin' – if that's livin'…"Edgar Bergen was really not a very good ventriloquist – in technical terms.But he gave Charlie and Mortimer such strong personalities that very seldom did anyone notice that his lip control wasn't all that great.And that's the same sort of thing that made Ringo a great drummer, even though he's only a middling-good drummer.(I'm sure that most of the people here could name comic artists who aren't necessarily the greatest artists technically, but who have such bravura and appeal that you don't notice unless you're actually looking for flaws. For me it's Frank Robbins…)

          • Miles Vorkosigan says:

            Mike,Here's far more info on Ringo's early careen than you probably wanted, off his Wiki page."In 1957, Starkey and his friend Eddie Miles formed The Eddie Clayton Skiffle Group. In 1959, he joined the Raving Texans, now adopting the stage name "Ringo Starr" because of the rings he wore and because it sounded "cowboyish", and his drum solos were billed as "Starr Time". By October 1960……, the band was renamed Rory Storm and the Hurricanes, and while they were performing in Hamburg, Starr met The Beatles. On 16 October 1960…… he drummed in Hamburg with Lennon, McCartney and Harrison, recording with them for the first time to back Hurricanes singer Lu Walters."And you're right. From a technical standpoint, Ringo's an average drummer, but he's a nice guy, charming, emotionally stable, doesn't cram weird chemicals into his body… Yeah, there are/were better out there, but some of them threw tv sets out of hotel windows, snorted drain cleaner, or mainlined mothballs. The point being that he's here, they ain't, and Ringo is good enough he's in demand.Gotta agree on Frank, too. I love Ed Benes' work, just because he does such fabulous women, and his action shots have lots of energy, almost at the Gil Kane level. Add Frank Cho to that, too. He's better than Ed, which takes some doing, plus where else are you gonna see hot babes and funny animals these days?

          • mike weber says:

            I thought i remembered Rory Storm and the Hurricanes, but i was too lazy^H^H^H^H busy to verify.And that's exactly my point re: Ringo – not great technically, but a great guy and reliable. The Don Heck of drummers?

          • Miles Vorkosigan says:

            Pretty much, yeah. Don Heck, Vince Coletta, George Tuska, any moderately-talented, likeable, reliable sort you can name, really. I think the big thing is knowing your limits and finding ways to work both within and around them.Bob Asprin did a series of novels called "Phule's Company", where a misfit squad of troopers, human and alien, have to learn to work together for their own good. One bit involved them running an obstacle course. Rather than working together to climb a wall, they blow it up. I always thought that was funny as hell.The point, though, is that you can get around anything that holds you back if you're willing to take the chance. Around, over, under, or just blow it up. Method's up to you. But it still helps to learn how to do it first.

          • mike weber says:

            Actually, now i come to think, i was thinking of Herb Trimpe, not Don Heck.Trimpe's anatomy and draftsmanship varied from average to mediocre … but wow, could he tell a story!

          • mike weber says:

            That bit from the Asprin puts me in mind of a line that either my brother or John Ringo put into the fourth "Prince Roger" book: "If it's stupid and it works, it ain't stupid."

        • Miles Vorkosigan says:

          Did Liefeld ever study anatomical art? Did he ever crack open a book? Did he know how?Some artists have problems with the simplest stuff, Russ. I knew a girl 30-plus years ago who was great with figure drawing but couldn't draw cars. She wanted to sit on her balcony and do street scenes. I handed he some issues of Daredevil for reference on action stuff, found her a book on engineering art to get the chops for drawing cars… and got it all back a month later, likely untouched. But she could draw hands and feet way better than Liefeld. And she was a registered nurse who drew for fun.I've said it before. Liefeld's problem is that he barely studied. If you're deficient in an area, study, dammit. Learn how to do what you need. Pick up Hogarth and learn to draw human anatomy. Get that, grab Kirby, Buscema, Kane or whoever and learn to get the style Marvel or whoever wants.Don't hate Liefeld because he can't draw. Hate him because he's a stupid fuck who refuses to learn how.

          • mike weber says:

            Bingo. Ignorant is not knowing something. Stupid is refusing to do anything about it.Someone once remarked "Most young males would rather die than admit they'd never seen an actual naked woman. Some comic artists, on the other hand, seem to be proud of the fact…"

          • Miles Vorkosigan says:

            Which on the very surface is insane. At its core it's not only insane, but ludicrous and suicidal. If you don't know what you're doing, how the hell can you do it? You cannot conceivably call yourself an artist if you barely know which end of the pencil not to stick in your eye. Sometimes you can study yourself into a coma and still not know how to draw properly. Sometimes it's all but instinctive. Adolf Hitler went to art school for years, and wasn't good for much past architectural art. Chuck Jones was given reams of Hammermill Bond stationery and Ticonderoga #2 pencils by his dad and encouraged to draw, one side only, use it all up. Which one is remembered for his creative talents and which for the Anschluss?Jeez, Mike, ya got me preaching here. Okay, you're choir, you know all this, we're in agreement. Rob's not ignorant, just a fool for not trying. But even the worst fool can learn to do better. I'm not proposing an intervention where we tie him to a chair and parade a hundred clones of Kelly Freas, Trina Robbins and Steve Rude back and forth. But somebody needs to get through to the guy. His artistic sins have severely limited his career, and if he doesn't learn what he needs to in order to correct the problem, he'll be living in a refrigerator crate somewhere. Sheesh. See what happens when ya get me started? I should never have left Krypton.

  32. Anonymous says:

    What's "vinyl"? Who's Frank Zappa? What does succession mean? Did you make that word up? LMFAO. OMG.

  33. StivBators says:

    I didn't know Ringo drew comics? Is there a board where people can talk about the Beatles? Is the Rob Liefeld board the only board where people can talk about Ringo. Ringo is the greatest drummer that ever lived. He's better than the guy from Rush.

  34. Miles Vorkosigan says:

    More on Ringo, in his own words.Drumming ability and appreciationWhile Starr himself has been the first to acknowledge the technical limitations of his drumming for The Beatles, the overall effect of his contribution has received high praise from notable drummers. Starr said, "Whenever I hear another drummer I know I'm no good. I'm no good on the technical things […] I'm your basic offbeat drummer with funny fills. The fills were funny because I'm really left-handed playing a right-handed kit. I can't roll around the drums because of that." George Martin's version was, "Ringo hit good and hard and used the tom-tom well, even though he couldn't do a roll to save his life", although Martin later added, "He's got tremendous feel. He always helped us to hit the right tempo for a song, and gave it that support-that rock-solid back-beat-that made the recording of all The Beatles' songs that much easier." Lennon, asked if Starr was the best drummer in the world, jokingly replied, "He's not even the best drummer in The Beatles!", but also said, "Ringo's a damn good drummer. He always was a good drummer. He's not technically good, but I think Ringo's drumming is underrated the same way as Paul's bass playing is underrated." McCartney sent Starr a postcard on 31 January 1969 (the day after the band's performance on the roof of Apple Studios) stating: 'You are the greatest drummer in the world. Really.' This postcard is included in Starr's book Postcards From The Boys.And this from Phil Collins; "Starr is vastly underrated. The drum fills on the song "A Day in the Life" are very complex things. You could take a great drummer today and say, 'I want it like that.' He wouldn't know what to do."So let's get back to bashing Liefeld, shall we?

  35. MilesVorkosigan says:

    And Mike, you are an idiot if you cannot see that I have a raging hard on for Ringo Starr. Clearly. I can't stop talking about him.

    • Miles Vorkosigan says:

      Very funny, Mark. You may be my clone twin brother, but that won't save you from an ass beating at the hands of our parents.And besides, the hard-on's for Ringo's wife…

  36. Paul1963 says:

    To get back to the original subject: Rob Liefeld is the only artist I'm aware of whose earliest work is his best. He did a decent job on the Jennifer Morgan Bonus Book in Warlord, peaked (IMHO) on the Hawk and Dove mini-series, and has gone downhill from there.

    • mike weber says:

      Actually not that uncommon a circumstance – the one-hit wonder, for instance, who does something utterly brilliant (or at least it seems so), and then spends an increasingly less-and-less productive career trying to catch that lightning in that bottle again.The tragedy is when someone allows that first Big Success to convince them that they don't need no stinkin' lessons to get better – that they're already a genius.

      • Miles Vorkosigan says:

        Mhm. Musically, Giorgio Moroder comes to mind. Or Marshall Crenshaw. And yeah, Rob's gotten worse, but a talented inker can fix a lot of sins an artist commits. If, say, Rob did an issue of… well, Justice League, and Karl Story came behind him as inker… Karl could make even the crappiest scribbler look great. Honestly, Rob's biggest problem is his ego, his feeling that he can do anything himself. A good artist and a good inker can turn out great work. At this point, Rob ain't got that.

        • mike weber says:

          Dick Giordano could make anybody look good.Of course, a lot of the time it wound up looking like the penciller had just done breakdowns, and Giordano had done all the real art.

  37. Anonymous says:

    I just spent the week going through every comic book ever created, and the name "Miles Vorkosigan" never came up… almost as if some douche bag without any credentials was on a site blasting away at Rob Liefeld because he can't even come close to being half as good as Rob is. And it's not an inker's job to "fix mistakes" – they ink the hard lines and fill in the shadows. You don't have the skills. Put up or shut up. Put your money where your mouth is, and stick those Beatles records up your ass length-wise. Go outside and contribute to society instead of sitting in the safety of your room and blasting away at people who are WAY more talented than you are and have actually left an artistic imprint on the world. 1 Rob liefeld paycheck is probably more than you make in 5 years Miles Vorkosigan. Douche bag.

    • mike weber says:

      Ah, yes. The fanboy defense."If you can't do better, you have no right to criticise."How long has it been since the last time you wrote a flaming screed blasting some artist or writer? (I know you have – the kind of mind that spouts that kind of crap always does.)

      • mike weber says:

        Oh – i forgot.Learn to talk sensibly and politely and maybe you'll get some respect.Would you care to evince your brilliant qualifications to say that Liefeld is a Great Artist?And if you think it's not an inker's job to "fix mistakes", you are so abysmally ignorant of how the comic industry works that your opinion is valueless, even if you can actually draw.Moron.

        • Miles Vorkosigan says:

          Thanks, Mike. Like I said above, I know a few guys in the trade, and I'm smart enough to know what I can't do. That said, yeah, Liefeld is a far better artist than me. My Evil Twin, Peter David, is a better artist than me. I'm just a fanboy that's studied.

    • Miles Vorkosigan says:

      Mouse.I shouldn't dignify this. But I will.No, I don't have credentials as an artist, writer or inker, and I can't draw a straight line without a ruler.All my Beatles vinyl was ruined years ago when they got exposed to summer heat. I did, however, work in radio 35 years ago, and I live in Nashville, so I've got a little knowledge of the music biz. I'm also a lifelong comics and sf fan, and know a coupla guys in that business. One of our regular guests at MidSouthCon was Joe Staton, a truly nice and likeable man, and I had the great joy of learning about artistic style and composition from Kelly Freas over a big glass of Scots whiskey. In 20 years of fannish involvement, I've met a lot of people. I could give you a list, but that would be showy.One Rob Liefeld paycheck is likely more than I've made in my life. I sit in this room I'm in because I have several pieces of plastic in my cardiovascular system. My mobility is limited due to degenerative arthritis. My point about Rob is this. He is the Garth Brooks of comics. He's made a huge splash and a lot of money, but he's not going to be remembered the way Dick Giordano, John Buscema or Kelly Freas will. A hundred years from now, when great art in the graphic novel medium is evaluated, names like Crandall, Eisner, Frazetta, and Foster will be held up as examples of mastery. If anyone holds up Liefeld, it'll be to show you what not to do. He won't be the only one, but I suspect he'll be the first one looked at. I apologize if I've offended you, but until global censorship takes hold, I have a right, as do you, to express my opinion.

  38. Christopher Back says:

    I THINK the reason why the Image founders (and in particular guys like Liefeld, McFarlane, Larsen, Jim Lee and Marc Silvertri) became the "comic book rock stars" of the 90s was that somehow they tapped into the youth who were buying comics at the time. Growing up in the 90s I knew many kids and teens who were buying and reading comics. Guys like Jack Kirby, Steve Ditko, Dave Cockrum, Don Perlin, and others were not representing our generation and even guys like Jim Starlin, John Byrne, Frank Miller, and Walt Simonson seemed old and out of date. Then some of grew up and saw how bad some of guys' art was like Liefeld. Call it the stupidity of youth, if you want but I think that there is where a lot of Liefeld's success came from was and whatever size of Liefeld's fanbase and where his supporters come from. That's just my opinion.

  39. Christopher Back says:

    I forgot to mention the speculators that pretty much ruined the market, which definitely added to Image founders' success.

  40. Miles Vorkosigan says:

    Exactly, Chris. Comics had gotten a bit old hat, and what Image was doing was an assload of adrenaline at the time. It was bold, dynamic and powerful. They took chances and recharged the industry, and for that I'm very proud of them. The artistic errors can be forgiven when you take into account the impact of the overall work.None of this dismisses poor work. But it sold, and at the time that was the important part.Years ago, I was at a writer's panel with, among others, Bob Asprin. Not many in attendance. Bob asked the question that so few know how to answer; why do you want to write?There were the usual horseshit answers, self-expression, freeing my muse, all that. Bob came around to my friend Charlie, who said, "To make money." "Exactly!" Yes, you wanna do the best you can, and tell a good story, but mostly you wanna make money. And love him or hate him, Rob Liefeld makes a LOT of money. Yes, he makes a lot of mistakes as an artist, yes, he's gota problems with accurate proportions, but his stuff sells. He drives a Ferrari, he owns his work, he makes piles of money. The end result is he's stupidly rich. He can still improve, though. And that's my last word on this.

  41. Damian says:

    Rob Liefeld is a sloppy, lazy artist who can't draw feet. No matter how much he changes the industry or how popular he is, he will never be able to draw feet.

  42. Karen says:

    oh my. This is ridiculous. Robert Liefield is a crappy artist and it is plain obvious. I can’t even hold one of his books without shivering. So I can’t understand why all this fuss & arguing.

    If we are talking about Art – his Sucks. If we are talking about the influence on the industry – very well, give him credit, he did that.

    But HOW in blue blazes his “influence on the industry” is supposed to make him a good artist – I have not the slightest idea.

    And yeah, like some people stressed here, he’s not improving. As for me, I read books with his art just cos I simply didn’t want to lose a story thread.

  43. Shinobi100 says:

    Rob was unique, no doubt. Even though he borrowed ideas on many occasions, he was unique. There was something he understood that very few people knew before him. When you look at a picture of a person, you focus on the face and upper body first. He was great at drawing faces. Most of his characters had teeny, tiny noses, but that was just his thing. And it gave his work a cool, anime feel to it. Other artists had similar styles to their faces. Byrne gave everyone a figure-8 shape head. Mcfarlane gave everyone aside from the main characters the same exact face (check out the soldiers in Amazing Spider-Man #299). I won’t deny that he didn’t like to draw legs or feet. But he didn’t have to draw many feet in his covers. And his covers, for the most part, are really impressive. Specifically X-Force #1 and his first issue on New Mutants. It was harder to follow the story in Liefeld’s books than the average artist. Because he only liked to draw 1-3 panels per page. Its a lot easier to tell a story when you use more panels. So you really have to use your imagination to fill in the blanks. And he was never paired with a great writer. No one is going to claim Louis Simonson or Fabian Nicieza as the greatest writer of all-time. Don’t even think that poor writing doesn’t have a negative effect on the artists work. His early work is his best stuff. It’s Rob. Get over it

    • Karen says:

      oh gosh, he was WHAT, good in drawing WHAT – I’m sorry, did I get it right? – FACES?? All his characters has three identical face expressions – when they shout, when they show their teeth and when they just stay grim. If not for the different haircuts you would never distinguish one character from another. Especially under all these superfluous lines and wrinkles which make a teen look like a hundred year old man. Yeah, it’s Rob. Get over it, apparently…

  44. Shugnight says:

    Hey dumbass anon from May 26 who posted around 1040 am. You are absolutely fucking stupid. Nothing makes ME angrier than someone who makes a strong declarative statement thats utterly and absurdly false. An Inkers job is to ENHANCE the pencils of a page, not just trace the “Hard lines” and “fill the shadows”. By your definition Any fuckstick like you with half a steady hand could be a comic book inker… except thats not the case at all. An inker must absolutely be an accomplished artist in and of themselves, and in the case of Rob Liefields horrid layouts and terrible scribbles its THEIR JOB to fix mistakes (if fixable) and make the pencils more readable and presentable. You are a blight on the asshole of humanity sir, if Miles is a douchebag, you are the collection of waste and excrement that that douchebag collects. Miles Vorkosigan and Mike Davis, you gentleman seem incredibly intelligent, thoughtful, well spoken and have politely presented very interesting but opposing arguments, and therefore, are my heroes of this thread.

    God that was prickish and pretentious, but these trolling assholes bring it out of me. That means you too DOOMCHAN. I hope the prefix of your name indicates your future.

    Ha ha ha –


  45. The Unknown says:

    You know what’s really funny? Every defence ever of Liefeld goes more-or-less like this:

    1. “All art’s subjective– who’s to say he couldn’t draw?”
    2. “Okay, well maybe he couldn’t– but he did make a lot of money!”
    3. “And you didn’t so you’re jealous. Nyah. Case closed.”

    And that’s it. I mean, even the guy’s *fans* can’t come up with anything better!

  46. Dodger says:

    @Michael: I can’t speak for anyone else but in my case no, it really isn’t jealousy.

    He was/is utterly incompetent as an artist and he was an idiot for drawing that way AND people were idiots for buying his work.

    Just because someone makes a bundle does not make them good. The free market is the perfect democracy and as such perfectly illustrates that even democracy is not perfect.

    Rob Liefeld sold a lot of comics. Britney Spears sold a lot of music. Reality TV sells a lot of, if not most of the time slots on TV. Hundreds of millions of people are entertained by sports. Ford sold cars all through the 70s and 80s and Kia sells cars now. Facebook dominates the web and MySpace used to.

    Meanwhile Van Gogh died penniless, the Boondock Saints flopped in theatres, and Firefly got cancelled after 12 episodes.

    Success, if related at all to competence and talent, is an inverse ratio.

  47. Dodger says:

    @Shugnight: Banky, get off the board you f*#%@in tracer.

  48. Johnny Raines says:

    I can draw stick figures. Not their feet, though. Sometimes their heads are too small and their bodies are disproportionate. I think if I was teamed with a good inker I could probably pump out some good Liefeldesque comics. I’m a pretty good writer too, but then I could just poop on some paper and that’d be a better storyline than he’s ever come up with.

  49. Bmac says:

    X-force number 1. Pages 1 2 and 3 (2 and 3 are a splash page). Compare to The New Teen Titans “The Judas Contract” pages 1, 2 and 3. The man has no shame.

  50. Jeremy says:

    Rob has never been a very strong artist or storyteller but no one can deny he generated excitement in the late 80’s/early 90’s. Around the same time, Paula Abdul (who can’t sing or write songs very well), became a pop idol and sold millions of records.

    I feel that both are similarly regarded by the public and by their respective industries today.

  51. NIghtwing says:

    Believe it or not, someone compared Liefeld with Jack Kirby: What do you think about it?