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Ms Marvel #8 cover by Jamie McKelvie.

Artist of the Week #8: Jamie McKelvie

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Every week I spotlight a comic book artist that should be on your radar. I present you a gallery of their work and then leave you some reading recommendations if you are starving for more. I’ve cleverly titled this Artist of the WeekAfter some time off the Artist of the Week feature is back! It’s been away for a while, but it’s here to stay for as long as people enjoy it.

This week’s artist is Jamie McKelvie. You might know him from his work published through Marvel and Image Comics, many of which is with frequent collaborator Kieron Gillen. McKelvie has created a large following, myself included, and with every project only gets larger. His clean line work contributes to expressive characters which amplify the likability of them. Furthermore, he is known to experiment with his sequential storytelling, with layouts and spreads which add to the story in exciting ways.

Below is a gallery of his work from various points in his career. Enjoy!

The Balancing Girl by Jamie McKelvie.
The Balancing Girl.
The Wicked + The Divine #1 covers A and B by by Jamie McKelvie.
The Wicked + The Divine #1 covers A and B
Page from X-Men: Season One by Jamie McKelvie.
Page from X-Men: Season One
Spread from Young Avengers by Jamie McKelvie.
Spread from Young Avengers
Ms Marvel #8 cover by Jamie McKelvie.
Ms Marvel #8 cover
Page from Phonogram: The Singles Club by Jamie McKelvie.
Page from Phonogram: The Singles Club
Panel from The Wicked + The Divine #1 by Jamie McKelvie.
Panel from The Wicked + The Divine #1
Captain Marvel character designs by Jamie McKelvie.
Captain Marvel character designs

Jamie McKelvie Reading Recommendations

If you’ve enjoyed this gallery and want to read some of Jamie McKelvie’s work here are 4 great comics I highly recommend.

Phonogram: The Singles Club by Jamie McKelvie.

Phonogram

Written by Kieron Gillen. Art by Jamie McKelvie. Published by Image Comics.

This series follows David Kohl, a mage with the ability to interpret his magic through music – specifically Britpop. The Goddess of Britpop, Britannica, has gone missing and it’s up to David to find her. Throughout the series David meets other mages before locating her. The second series focuses on one specific night, with each issue focusing on a character.

Overall, Phonogram is a celebration of music and how people connect to it. How it’s connected with moments – both good and bad.

Phonogram was one of McKelvie’s first major work and a project that would see a long lasting and continuing collaboration with writer Kieron Gillen. It has received a sequel, titled The Singles Club, and a third series will be beginning in August 2015, titled The Immaterial Girl.

Young Avengers #13 cover by Jamie McKelvie.

Young Avengers

Written by Kieron Gillen. Art by Jamie McKelvie. Published by Marvel Comics.

Young Avengers is a teenage superhero team book, featuring multi-dimensional hopping, Kid Loki and plenty of heart. Critically acclaimed and loved by many, the series ran for 15 issues through 2013-14.

McKelvie’s art is expressive as ever, which helped convey the emotional issues of the teenage characters quite well. He was also able to experiment with the page a bit more, as you can see in the in the gallery above. Another example of this is a spread which shows a map of a character fighting in different parts of the room with a key referencing different panels which surround the map. It’s fresh idea, which not only looks cool, but also added character to the title and allowed a fight to not exceed two pages and still show plenty of what happened.

Young Avengers ran for 15 issues and can now be found digitally and is collected in one nice collected edition.

The Wicked + The Divine volume 1 TPB cover by Jamie McKelvie.

The Wicked + The Divine

Written by Kieron Gillen. Art by Jamie McKelvie. Published by Image Comics.

The Wicked + The Divine is McKelvie’s current project which has been nominated for multiple Eisner awards – including Best Cover Artist and Best New Series. While Phonogram was an exploration of how music made people feel, The Wicked + The Divine explores the concept of fandom. I won’t talk about the story too much as it has been talked about on the site multiple times, here and here.

What I will tell you is that I think that this series is McKelvie’s best work to date! From the signature covers of character portraits to fantastic character designs, McKelvie’s work really shines in this series. As always, his characters are expressive but when you have godly popstars with elaborate costumes and hairstyles they’re even better. My favourite being Inanna, who’s heavily inspired by Prince but with a heavenly aura.

As of writing this there are 11 issues of The Wicked + The Divine with the second collection available soon. You can also find it digitally.

X-Men: Season One cover by Julian Totino Tedesco.

X-Men: Season One

Written by Dennis Hopeless. Art by Jamie McKelvie. Published by Marvel Comics.

Finally, there’s X-Men: Season One which is an original graphic novel which gives a modern retelling of the X-Men origin – giving a fresh take the 1960’s stories. In it we see a retelling of the team’s first encounters with Magneto and his Brotherhood of Evil Mutants, Unus the Unstoppable while they also deal with hormones and newly formed powers.

In this original graphic novel McKelvie has no problem portraying both the action and the quieter moments with his clean lines and his always expressive art.

X-Men: Season One is available digitally and in trade paperback.

Check out previous Artists of the Weeks.

Have Your Say

Did you enjoy Jamie McKelvie’s art? If so, will you be checking out any of the comics recommended? You can let me know in the comments below or via Facebook or Twitter.

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