Friday, March 17, 2017

Cover Artist: Adam Hughes

Adam Hughes is an American comic book artist best known for his pinup-style art for female characters like Wonder Woman and Catwoman.  While cheesecake covers are his expertise, Hughes has also contributed interior artwork for a wide range of comics from all major publishers.  Adam Hughes covers are sought after by a loyal fanbase.

Adam Hughes' earliest published Star Wars comic artwork is for the Classic Star Wars adaptations from 1994.  Dark Horse was having success with their Star Wars line of comics and initially relied heavily on reprinting material to expand their offerings.  Hughes provided the cover for Star Wars: A New Hope #2 and Star Wars: Return of the Jedi #1.  The A New Hope cover is a nice piece showing Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia swinging across the Death Star chasm.  The Return of the Jedi cover shows Leia in her infamous slave outfit, with a slobbering Jabba looming over her in the background.  It is a nice cover and representative of the type of work he has become known for.

Classic Star Wars: A New Hope #2a - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (July 1994)
reprints Marvel Star Wars #4 - 6
Classic Star Wars: Return of the Jedi #1a - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (October 1994)
reprints Marvel Return of the Jedi #1, 2
10 years later, Hughes would semi-regularly produce covers for several Star Wars titles for a short period, starting with the cover for the one-shot Star Wars: Purge.  This comic, focusing on Darth Vader's involvement in the Jedi purge, was an immediate success and spawned two more one-shots and a 2-part mini-series.  The Purge comic was reprinted for the Star Wars Comic Pack toy line produced by Hasbro.

Star Wars: Purge - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (December 2005)
Star Wars Comic Pack #13a - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (September 2007)
reprints Star Wars: Purge #1
Hughes follows up this work with a cover on one of the Boba Fett one-shots, Overkill.  He depicts a cool Fett, complete with lens flare, in front of Slave I.

Star Wars: Boba Fett - Overkill #1a - Marvel Comics, U.S. (April 2006)
After Boba Fett, he provided artwork for six of the first seven issues of Star Wars: Legacy.  His work on these covers is reminiscent of the Return of the Jedi mini-series covers published by Marvel.  His first five show three characters from the series and Legacy #7 only shows a "Force ghost" Luke.  These pieces do a good job of introducing the many different characters whose lives would intersect in this epic 50-issue series.  A huge hit, the first three issues went back to print several times.  Additionally, three of the issues were reprinted for the Star Wars Comic Pack toy line produced by Hasbro.

Star Wars: Legacy #1a - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (June 2006)
Star Wars: Legacy #1b - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (June 2006)
2nd print
Star Wars: Legacy #1c - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (June 2006)
3rd print
Star Wars: Legacy #2a - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (July 2006)
Star Wars: Legacy #2b - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (July 2006)
2nd print
Star Wars: Legacy #2c - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (July 2006)
3rd print
Star Wars: Legacy #3a - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (September 2006)
Star Wars: Legacy #3b - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (September 2006)
2nd print
Star Wars: Legacy #5a - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (November 2006)
Star Wars: Legacy #6a - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (November 2006)
Star Wars: Legacy #7a - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (January 2007)
Star Wars Comic Pack #22a - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (September 2008)
reprints Star Wars: Legacy #2
Star Wars Comic Pack #32a - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (September 2008)
reprints Star Wars: Legacy #6
Star Wars Comic Pack #49a - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (November 2010)
reprints Star Wars: Legacy #7
Entertainment Earth exclusive
The final Adam Hughes cover during this period was for the massive 832-page hardcover, Star Wars: Luke Skywalker - Last Hope for the Galaxy.  Released in 2008, this hardcover came in a slipcase which uses the same cover art as the book.  This book compiles over 30 years of stories featuring Luke and the cover artwork does a nice job of capturing where Luke's journey began.

Star Wars: Luke Skywalker - Last Hope for the Galaxy a
- Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (September 2008)
Hughes contributes a Star Wars cover for Dark Horse's 2012 Free Comic Book Day offering which is a split comic featuring Star Wars and Serenity.  Han looks very much in his element, carrying his contraband while taking fire.

Star Wars: The Art of the Bad Deal (Free Comic Book Day 2012)
Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (May 2012)
also Serenity
The final Adam Hughes Star Wars covers are for the 4-part Rebel Heist mini-series.  He provides the main covers for this series with each issue telling a story of one of the main Star Wars heroes from the point of view of a Rebel recruit.  The main characters used are Han Solo, Princess Leia, Chewbacca, and Luke Skywalker and they are depicted on the cover for the story they are in.  Also published were sketch variant covers at a ratio of 1:40.  Dark Horse had used the main characters and variant covers sparingly during their stewardship of the Star Wars comics, but in the waning days of their contract, they had no qualms utilizing both.  A variant cover of the first issue was also used for the Phoenx Comicon exclusive that summer.

Star Wars: Rebel Heist #1a - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (May 2014)
Star Wars: Rebel Heist #1c - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (May 2014)
sketch variant
Star Wars: Rebel Heist #1d - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (June 2014)
Phoenix Comicon exclusive
Star Wars: Rebel Heist #2a - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (June 2014)
Star Wars: Rebel Heist #2c - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (June 2014)
sketch variant
Star Wars: Rebel Heist #3a - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (July 2014)
Star Wars: Rebel Heist #3c - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (July 2014)
sketch variant
Star Wars: Rebel Heist #4a - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (August 2014)
Star Wars: Rebel Heist #4c - Dark Horse Comics, U.S. (August 2014)
sketch variant
So far, Adam Hughes has not provided any covers for Marvel's new Star Wars line; he has been exclusively providing artwork for DC Comics as well as some small publisher work the past few years.  If he ever decides to do work for Marvel, I would love to see him create more Star Wars covers.

No comments:

Post a Comment