Boris Vallejo

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Boris Vallejo
Vallejo in April 2005
Born (1941-01-08) January 8, 1941 (age 80)
Lima, Peru
Spouse(s)Julie Bell

Boris Vallejo (born January 8, 1941)[1][2][3] is a Peruvian-American painter.[4]

Vallejo works almost exclusively in the fantasy and erotica genres.[4] His hyper-representational paintings have appeared on the covers of numerous science fiction and fantasy paperbacks and are featured in a series of best-selling glossy calendars. Subjects of his paintings are typically sword and sorcery, gods, monsters, and well-muscled male and female barbarians engaged in battle.


Vallejo was born in Lima, Peru. He began painting at the age of 13, in 1954, and obtained his first illustration job three years later, in 1957, at the age of 16. He attended the Escuela Nacional Superior Autónoma de Bellas Artes on a five-year scholarship, and was awarded a prize medal.[5] After emigrating to the United States in 1964, at the age of 23, he quickly garnered a fan following from his illustrations of Tarzan, Conan the Barbarian, Doc Savage and various other fantasy characters (often done for paperback fiction works featuring the characters). This led to commissions for movie poster illustration, advertisement illustration, and artwork for various collectibles - including Franklin Mint paraphernalia, trading cards, and sculpture. Along with Julie Bell, Vallejo presents his artwork in an annual calendar and various books. Vallejo's work is often compared to the work of Frank Frazetta, not only because it is similar stylistically, but also since Frazetta painted covers for paperbacks of some of the same characters.[6]

Vallejo's preferred artistic medium is oil on board, and he has previously used photographs to combine discrete images to form composite images.[7] Preparatory works are pencil or ink sketches, which have been displayed in the book Sketchbook. He and Julie Bell have worked on collaborative artworks together, in which they sign the artwork with both names.[8]

Vallejo has created film posters for numerous fantasy and action productions, including Knightriders (1981), Q (1982), and Barbarian Queen (1985). He has also illustrated posters for comedies, notably National Lampoon's Vacation (1983), European Vacation (1985), Nothing But Trouble (1991) and Aqua Teen Hunger Force Colon Movie Film for Theaters (2007), co-created with Bell.[9] He created the 1978 Tarzan calendar.[citation needed]


He received the British Fantasy Award for best artist in 1979[10] for his painting The Amazon Princess and her Pet.[11] Vallejo also won the 2011 Chelsey Award for Lifetime Artistic Achievement,[12][13] and the 2014 Chelsey Award for Best Product Illustration.[14]


Vallejo's published works include:

  • The Fantastic Art of Boris Vallejo (1980)
  • Mirage (1982, reprinted 1996 and 2001)
  • Enchantment. Stories By Doris Vallejo, Illustrated by Boris Vallejo (1984)
  • Fantasy Art Techniques (1985)
  • Ladies: Retold Tales of Goddesses and Heroines. By Boris and Doris Vallejo (1992)
  • Bodies: Boris Vallejo: Photographic Art (1998)
  • Dreams: The Art of Boris Vallejo (1999)
  • Titans: The Heroic Visions of Boris Vallejo and Julie Bell (2000)
  • Sketchbook (2001)
  • Twin Visions (2002)
  • Fantasy Workshop: A Practical Guide (with Julie Bell) (2003)
  • Boris Vallejo and Julie Bell: The Ultimate Collection (2005)
  • The Fabulous Women of Boris Vallejo and Julie Bell (2006)
  • Imaginistix (2006)

A yearly calendar of 13 paintings by Boris Vallejo and Julie Bell is produced by Workman Publishing.[citation needed]


  1. ^ Comics Buyer's Guide #1650; February 2009; page 107.
  2. ^ Miller, John Jackson (June 10, 2005). "Comics Industry Birthdays". Comics Buyer's Guide. Archived from the original on October 30, 2010.
  3. ^ "Boris Vallejo". Marvel Database. Retrieved 2020-08-20.
  4. ^ a b Boing Boing.
  5. ^ Sackmann, E. Great Masters of Fantasy Art Taco 1986 p.34 ISBN 3892680086
  6. ^ "Frank Frazetta / Boris Vallejo: Who knows some similar artists". CGC Comic Book Collectors Chat Boards. Retrieved 2020-08-20.
  7. ^ Boris Vallejo Fantasy Art Techniques
  8. ^ Boris Vallejo and Julie Bell Fantasy Workshop: A Practical Guide
  9. ^ "King of the Mountain -".
  10. ^ "British Fantasy - Prix littéraire - nooSFere".
  11. ^ "Julie Bell & Boris Vallejo". Retrieved from "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 2014-07-15. Retrieved 2013-03-17.CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link).
  12. ^ "Award Category: 2011 Award for Lifetime Artistic Achievement (Chesley Award)". Retrieved 2020-08-20.
  13. ^ Gallo, Irene (2011-08-19). "Announcing the 2011 Chesley Award Winners". Retrieved 2020-08-20.
  14. ^ Gallo, Irene (2014-08-15). "Announcing the 2014 Chesley Award Winners". Retrieved 2020-08-20.

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