Kelley Jones

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For those of a similar name, see Kelly Jones (disambiguation).
Kelley Jones
Born (1962-07-23) July 23, 1962 (age 54)
Sacramento, California
Nationality American
Area(s) Penciller, Inker
Notable works
Batman
Batman & Dracula: Red Rain
The Sandman

Kelley Jones (born July 23, 1962,[1] in Sacramento, California) is an American comic book artist best known for his work on Batman with writer Doug Moench and on The Sandman with writer Neil Gaiman.

Kelley Jones,an award winning and celebrated comic artist,started his career at Marvel Comics as and inker over Butch Guices art on the "Micronauts" in 1983.He inked the book for several issues,until Guice left the title,and was thrown into the pencilling forthwith. Jones pencilled the last issue,and then drew the twenty issues of the Micronauts when it became the "New Voyages"Jones was next united with writers Bill Mumy and Miguel Ferrer, and drew the "Comet Man",and popular and successful series,that's cancellation was a shock to the creators,as its sales were in the top ten for Marvel during its release.Jones frustration with not being allowed to ink his own work had him accept an offer from DC to come there and work for them. He was assigned Deadman written by Mike Baron.Deadman was appearing in Action Comics Weekly,and was a largely forgotten character in the DC universe. That changed when Kelley Jones took over.Jones was quoted as saying that Deadman was a turning point in his career.Under Jones,Deadman was drawn as an agonized and skeletal being.He then was assigned "Deadman,Love after Death",also written by Mike Baron.It was a prestige format book,and was a true horror story,devoid of any superhero underpinnings the character had previously held.The assignment allowed Jones even more freedom to explore the more horror elements of his growingly unique style.Jones also,for the first time in his career up to that point,got to ink his own work.It was a tour de force achievement,in that the books sold out,and Jones was nominated for an Eisner award for his artwork.Jones then was in demand for horror themed stories,drawing a fill in issue of Swamp Thing, "Axes Mans Jazz",again to much acclaim.Jones went on to a stunning run on Sandman.Starting with the story'Calliope',he made Sandman a powerful image of vengeance. His work was a sensation to readers,and followed it with "Dream of a Thousand Cats".Jones showed his skills as a formidable artist as the Sandman doesn't appear in the issue at all,and is seen through the eyes of cats,as the story is from a cats perspective.It was a turning point in the series as the issue brought in huge critical raves for both he and Gaiman. Their work on the title became legendary immediately.Gaiman and Jones then did the most famous run of the series with the 'Season of Mists' storyline,wherein Jones was principal designer of several new characters that appeared in this seminal run.Considered by many the high water mark of Sandman, it won the Eisner for best comic story of that year.Jones was then offered the title as the regular monthly penciller,but opted for another job,one that cemented him as one of comics premier auteur creative forces.With Doug Moench,Jones went on to draw"Red Rain",an Else World story. It was the story of the battle between Dracula and Batman. Presented in a hardcover format,the book sold out the weekend it was released.Jones then teamed with inker John Beatty,and did the sequel to "Red Rain",title"Bloodstorm" where the Joker runs a vampire gang,and was again,a smash hit on the order of the original of which "Bloodstorm" was the sequel. As this was being drawn,Jones was hired to do covers for the Batman and Detective comic monthly titles. His covers for the "Knightfall" storyline became wildly popular,and were instantly deemed as important as the stories themselves.When he was hired to become the regular penciller for the monthly Batman title,he and Moench began one of the most amazing periods of the titles history. It became known subsequently as the 'Jones run'.Along with Moench,and Beatty,Batman under them was not tied to the other DC batman related comics,and was a celebrated period of single issue stories and two parters,harkening to the Golden Age of comics.Fans were thrilled the Batman was produced as a stand-alone book,and that Batman was a pure comics type book,not driven by commercial tides of the industry.The Batman under Jones became DCs best selling title,much for his gothic and filmnoir approach to the character.It influenced the Batman films by Christopher Nolan and became considered one of the great interpretations to this day. Fearsomely portrayed with long ears and shadowed cape,Jones's Batman was a force of nature,and ran for three consecutive years until DC imposed a mandated series tie in with the other titles.Jones left,and went on to complete the "Red Rain' trilogy with "Crimson Mist". The concluding chapter was as successful as its predecessors,and is now a world in the DC comics universe.Jones wrote and drew the "Hammer" for Dark Horse comics, a terrifying and darkly humorous tale of a warrior from another world who battles the forces of a Lovecraftian menace in a wildly entertaining, and original series .The "Hammer" has been considered one of the best "Cthulu Mythos" inspired stories ever done.Jones went on to team up with Steve Seagle,and did the series the "Crusades" for the Vertigo line at DC. The series was well regarded,and showed Jones's ability to draw everyday people and places,with the same aplomb as he did the gruesomely gothic Gotham City in Batman.Jones worked with Steve Niles on his "Cal Macdonald" series,and with Kurt Busiek and Len Wein on the very successful "Conan,the Book of Thoth". Jones was then hired by DC to return to the world of Batman,and did "Batman,Unseen",with long time collaborator Doug Moench,as well as "Gotham after Midnight" with Steve Niles. "Gotham after Midnight" won the Rondo award for best horror comic,and an MTV award for best comic.Jones recently drew a two part Swamp Thing story for DCs Convergence storyline,and due to its success,he reteamed with Len Wein,the creator of Swamp Thing for a six part mini series. Swamp Thing was a critical and financial hit,and Jones interpretation of the character hailed as the finest since artist Bernie Wrightsons portrayal.Jones is now working on several new Batman stories for DC.

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References[edit]

  1. ^ Miller, John Jackson (June 10, 2005). "Comics Industry Birthdays". Comics Buyer's Guide. Archived from the original on October 29, 2010. 

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