Time for the waaay back machine this entry since I found this recently in my lateral files! Back when I was an art student majoring in Illustration at Southeastern Massachusetts University (now Umass Dartmouth) I had to do a 2D Design final class project where I would interview and artist I liked and do an illustration in homage of their work. Anyone who’s read my interviews knows that a friend acquired Berni (now Bernie) Wrightson’s phone number and I subsequently called and did a phone interview with him. To this day this amazes me that I would be so intrusive and he’d be so giving to a stranger. Anyway, the image I put together was a collage of various elements that he’d done to date (which was April 27, 1987). From my vast Wrightson collection (now all sold, sadly) I used elements from Warren’s “The Black Cat” and “The Muck Monster”, his Frankenstein graphic novel, “The Monsters Color the Creature Book”, Stephen King’s “Cycle of the Werewolf”, and the logo from Pacific Comics’ reprint series “Berni Wrightson: Master of the Macabre”. FWIW, I got an A- from my professor and was told that I’d have done better had I listened to her and not been so stubborn after she critiqued my prelim and omitted the ‘Berni’ from the design and just kept the vertical Wrightson (or vice-versa). I believe I used various markers on 11X17 thick board (hard to confirm as I’d laminated it).

I later took it with me to Bernie’s home since he’d invited me to his studio for his annual Halloween bash at the end of the interview. He displayed it and was much too polite about it. And this led to several parties and meeting his community friends and eventually breaking into the industry after showing my work to him and his bud Jim Starlin. That’s a whole other story that’s been recounted many times.
But this is an integral part of that period and while crude in appearance, it means a lot to me and how far I’ve come.

Tribute art by Bob Almond