Saturday Sketch Day: Tom Grindberg's Conan
What amazes me about Tom's sketch work is that it's in these roughs that his true influences are on display. Each time he draws a comic he takes on a persona, he adapts to to the job at hand and emulates any style that an editor asks for. In effect he is a true chameleon when it comes to his professionally published work. In 2009 I had the good fortune to correspond with and interview Tom, during which I asked about his sketch work. "The "rough sketches" are the backbone and foundation to all my work," he said at the time. "In preparation to anything committed to paper is done this way. Nothing out the ordinary with my approach it’s just the time-honored-traditional way to go about art. When you compare my pencils to my layouts they are very consistent, clean with a high emphasis to good draughtsmanship and plenty of energy. Unfortunately, this stage is seldom seen and in most cases is totally lost in the translation when my worked is passed further down the assembly line." In his sketch work Tom reveals another side to his art, and his influences - from Neal Adams through to Frazetta, Hal Foster and more - become apparent. Say what you will about Tom Grindberg, he is a very unique artist and one to watch.
In the last few months Tom has been working with Roy Thomas on an on-line Tarzan strip - I've seen the work that he's produced and it's stellar. If you've not checked it out yet then you really should - it's cheap ($1.99 per month) and it's just too good. Roy is writing as well as he's ever done, and Tom will surely go down in history as one of the finest Tarzan artists there ever was - he has found his place and is making his mark.
Until then - here's Conan, as sketched by Tom Grindberg!
Sketch status: well, not really for sale...
In closing, it's not often that I give anyone a plug, but if you're thinking of getting something inked, then you really shouldn't go past Bob Almond. He's one of the best inkers I know of, he's a rarity amongst artist in that he genuinely gets excited about art and his rates are better than you'd expect. Trust me on this, if you want some quality art at a damned fine price, then scoot on over to Bob's site and treat yourself - you won't regret it.