Encyclopedia of Fantasy (1997)
Vess, Charles

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(1951-    ) US fantasy illustrator and Comics artist with a fine, delicate line style and a romantic imagination, strongly influenced by the English fairytale illustrators W Heath Robinson and Arthur Rackham. His work has a subtle Victorian quality; this makes it all the more unusual that he has become a leading artist in US comic books, where subtlety and delicacy are rare qualities. He works in coloured inks, using them in transparent glazes to achieve a clear, atmospheric, sometimes almost luminous effect.

CV has taught at the William King Regional Art Center in Abingdon, Virginia (1980-1982), and at the Parson School of Design in New York (1992). His early comics work was on Spiderman, Thor, etc., but his reputation rests mainly on his more fanciful comics in Epic Illustrated and some more recent pieces with writer Neil Gaiman – on Sandman and the Graphic Novel StarDust (graph 1993). CV also wrote and drew the Spiderman story "Spirits of the Earth" (1991), inspired by a visit to the Orkney Islands. [RT]

Charles Vess


This entry is taken from the Encyclopedia of Fantasy (1997) edited by John Clute and John Grant. It is provided as a reference and resource for users of the SF Encyclopedia, but apart from possible small corrections has not been updated.