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Paul M. Smith (American, b.1953)

Art

Birth Place: Kansas City, MO USA

Biography:

Who is Comic Artist Paul Smith?

Paul Smith is a comic book artist whose iconic work on the X-Men and X-Factor helped to cement them as two of the most popular superhero teams with comic fans in the 1980s. Perhaps best known for creating the “punk” look that Storm had during that time (her black leather and mohawk phase), Smith also had a serious influence over future incarnations of Kitty Pryde and other members of the X-Men. 

Famous for his smooth, minimalist style, his X-Men comics have been reprinted many times thanks to their pleasing aesthetics and ability to show great action. His most recent work has been for Marvel. In 2005, he drew Kitty Pryde: Shadow and Flame a limited series for Marvel written by Akira Yoshida. 

What is Comic Artist Paul Smith Famous For?

Above all else, Paul Smith will be known for his iconic Storm “punk” look from the 1980s run of X-Men. Funnily, this look happened initially as a joke between Smith and his editor Louise Simonson. He based her look on the 1980s star, Mr. T, but when Simonson got a look at it, she encouraged Smith to develop the look. His cover of Uncanny X-Men #173 was the basis for many posters, pictures, and promotional materials for the rest of that decade -- including the book Heroes for Hope. 

How Did Paul Smith Get Started?

Paul Smith is the rare self-taught comic illustrator. After getting to work as an animator on Ralph Bakshi’s The Lord of the Rings, he was able to parlay that into a number of roles for Marvel Comics in the early 1980s. He became the regular artist on Doctor Strange in 1982, but quit only two issues into his run so that he could work on The Uncanny X-Men. He would produce ten iconic issues, including Uncanny X-Men #173 for which he is best known. 

What Comics Did Paul Smith Illustrate?

Paul Smith’s work on Uncanny X-Men gave him instant fame in the comic community, but it was his work on Doctor Strange that resonates with many fans today. His beautiful, sometimes sparse aesthetic gives his work a timeless quality that has made his work extremely popular with collectors all over the world. 

What Comic Characters Did Paul Smith Make?

Paul Smith created Chance Falconer, the daughter of a famed paranormal investigator Lucas Falconer in the nineties. The book Leave it to Chance only ran for twelve issues over the course of three years and only the first of which was published by DC. He is best known for his work with the X-Men and Doctor Strange, including iconic character designs that still resonate with comic fans to this day. 

What Comic Book Publishers Did Paul Smith Work For?

For almost the entirety of Smith’s career, he has worked for Marvel Comics. While he has done small runs for other comics, including a brief run at DC doing The Spirit for four issues (as well as Batman Annual 9), he is most known and loved for his work at Marvel. 

How Much is Paul Smith’s Original Comic Book Art Worth?

The best way to value original comic art is to compare past auction prices for similar works. View past sale prices below.


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