Welcome to my weekly column showcasing up and coming or undiscovered talent, bringing to your attention creators that I feel will be break-out stars in the near future. Some are already well on their way to super stardom, while some are just on the outskirts breaking in.
Everyone has a favorite comic book creator. One they’ve discovered recently, or maybe followed from the very beginning of their career. Some have so many favorites it’s hard to choose just one.
Every single one of those creators started somewhere, be it by producing photocopied mini comics to sell at their neighborhood comic shop, getting a table in the artist’s alley at their local comic convention, publishing fan fiction, posting images to deviantart.com, or doing commissions through the internet or at conventions. Some of them slipped in under everyone’s nose.
Like Brazilian artist Diego Bernard.
After five short years, he has easily become one of comics best kept secrets, but I guarantee that won’t be for long. His highly detailed, yet extremely polished work can currently be found in the pages of Valiant’s X-O Manowar, and boy is it a thing to behold.
His recent work is a far cry from his early works for Zenescope Entertainment and its Grimm Fairytales line just five years ago. Even his early work from Dynamite on The Man With No Name, though great in its own right, doesn’t hold up to what he’s doing now. It is a rare thing to see an artist improve so much in such a short time frame, and he’s getting better with every page.
With a very strong reminiscence to Brian Hitch’s explosive wide-screen style, his panels are full to bursting with action, his characters jump right off the page! There’s a reason Valiant keeps using him on such titles as the previously mentioned X-O Manowar, Unity, Shadowman, and Eternal Warrior.
After an 18 issue stint at Top Cow drawing Witchblade, he has honed his skills to that of an illustrative marksman, proving that he can tackle any book, and make it look gorgeous. Working on Red Lanterns, Diego went toe-to-toe with veteran fan-favorite Ed Benes, and didn’t even blink!
But first and foremost, Diego is a storyteller. His panel compositions lead you to where he wants you to go, without being too flashy or distracting. Even his “talking head” panels are exciting, and you can tell he spends a great amount of time to make them that way. On X-O Manowar he is turning in easily the best work of his career, with some of the most detailed comic pages I’ve seen in some time.
He may be a relatively new player on the field, but if he keeps batting home-runs like X-O Manowar, he’ll be Valiant’s Most Valuable Player, and a future comic rock star in no time.