Recently finished reading TESTAMENT: THE LIFE AND ART OF FRANK FRAZETTA/Edited by Arnie Fenner and Cathy Fenner. I bought the limited edition slipcase version of this book when it was first released in 2001, but when I found out it had been reissued as a soft cover in 2008, I figured I'd get an extra reading copy. And I'm glad I did too...the reproduction is actually somewhat sharper(and darker) than the 2001 hardcover.

Since ICON and LEGACY(the first 2 books in this monumental trilogy) focused on Frank's most popular work(Conan, ERB, Warren, Death Dealer series, etc.) this concluding volume contains his lesser known published work, as well as a generous selection of previously unpublished art.

There's a nice collection of Western themed paintings that Frank did for a book club.

Also included are several personal watercolors that Frazetta would paint as gifts for his wife. These mostly follow a similar compositional idea: a beautiful, naked woman is the dominant figure, surrounded by various imps, pixies, elves and other small folk.

Flipping through the pages, here are some of the highlights for me...

2 lovely paintings of Frank's wife, Ellie: a portrait from 1960 and a nude study from 1978.

A 4 panel watercolor cartoon from MAD magazine with Tarzan being beaten up by a bunch of apes.

The BATTLESTAR GALACTICA paintings find Frank doing some fine work for the 1978 TV GUIDE ads for the show.

The painting of Bo Derek for her SVENGALI company letterhead is too beautiful for words, and is printed here as a large size 2 page repro.

The wonderful first version of the outlaw biker painting DEVIL RIDER is shown side by side the revised version, which displays Frank's sometimes unfortunate tendency to repaint a perfectly fine work and wind up with something not as good.

BY DAWN'S EARLY LIGHT is a perfect example of Frazetta's absolute mastery of the watercolor medium.

An incredible pencil drawing of Vampirella from 1991 is presented next to an inkwash Vampi drawing from 1969.

The book closes with WILD RIDE, one of Frank's very best personal paintings. Shown here is the watercolor rough, the full size oil painting, and a detail close up of the girl riding a horse on the beach.

This book can be seen as a companion to the excellent documentary FRAZETTA: PAINTING WITH FIRE, because it contains written testimonials from Michael Kaluta, Bernie Wrightson, Dave Stevens and others extolling the virtues of Frazetta's art, much as they did in the film.




Last Edited By: HeroesAndVillians Sep 16 08 11:07 AM. Edited 3 times.