Communications technology has made connecting to your favorite comic book creators easier than ever, whether to ask questions on Tumblr or to tweet responses to their rants about inefficient school reading programs. Enter Instagram, the most visual of social networks, where top artists share sketches and sneak-peeks of their latest comic projects. What better way to break up the continuous stream of food porn and duck-faced selfies than with a steady trickle of awesome art?
The platform also provides a new avenue to see this generation’s greatest pencillers, inkers and colorists tackle characters they don’t usually draw. Ever wondered how Chris Samnee’s Black Canary would look? What about a Barb Wire by Fiona Staples? Yeah, same here. With that in mind, here’s a list of 15 fantastic creators dropping art bombs on your optic nerves, in alphabetical order.
1. Rafael Albuquerque
Between commissioned drawings and photos from his travels, American Vampire artist Albuquerque’s feed strikes a cool balance of art and life — one moment he’s at a museum, the next he’s drawing Batwoman. He posts a great variety of his ink-washed portraits, all maintaining some central feeling, from the Thing’s loneliness to Skinner Sweet’s feral blood-thirst. And — this being Instagram — expect a few food shots.
2. Gabriel Ba
More so than his twin brother Fabio’s feed, Gabriel Ba’s Instagram leans more toward life than art, but that doesn’t make it any less easy on the eyes. Ba seems incapable of non-artistry — amid sketches and comic book work, there are evocative photos from his travels and stunning Brazilian sunsets.
3. Vanesa R. Del Rey
If you’re not already following Del Rey, you’re doing your eyes a major disservice. Whether she’s drawing pulp-style femme fatales or old classics like Wonder Woman and Cheetara, Del Rey’s art is always a pleasant jolt to the visual cortex. Her work often balances sexiness with strength; so much of this feed should be hanging on gallery walls.
Whatever Jock is working on, expect lots of mood and heavy ink — and we wouldn’t have it any other way. With his new book, Wytches, on the horizon, we can also – fingers crossed! – look forward to some fresh horror art to complement all the shadowy Batmans.
5. Jason Latour
If the books just aren’t enough for you, sate your need for more Southern Bastards with Latour’s Instagram feed. It may be a one-stop shop for teasers, variant covers and panels about fried pie, but it’s also loaded with cosplayers and some pretty amazing sketches of TV characters like Mad Men’s Don Draper and True Detective’s Rust Cohle. Either way, the man really knows how to draw an angry face.
6. Jaime McKelvie
From panels to variant covers, McKelvie’s feed is the place to be for fans of The Wicked + The Divine. Hopefully, there’s much more of TW+TD’s super-slick Lucifer coming our way. But all (art)work and no play makes Jaime a dull boy, so there also are a bunch of pictures of McKelvie’s cat.
7. Fabio Moon
Moon’s feed is more than just pictures of art: it’s a chronicle of art life and the process inherent. He’s just as likely to snap a shot of his brushes and inks as a new drawing, and yet, even those images have a cerebral aesthetic that fans of the Brazilian artist will appreciate.
8. Michael Avon Oeming
Now that he’s teamed back up with his Powers partner, Brian Michael Bendis, Oeming’s feed is a cavalcade of art from their new collaboration, The United States of Murder Inc. Based on the work he posts, the new series is big on gunplay. Mix with some Mice Templar and Victories, and Oeming’s Instagram is as bold as it is minimalist.