Sunday, February 02, 2020

Frazetta and me

When I was a young teen, I ran across the book covers of the late, great master Frank Frazetta.  To say that his artwork made an impression upon me would be the second greatest understatement if all of human history.

I became a Frazetta collector. I bought books, magazines, fanzines, posters, and later on in life, when I could begin to afford it, original artwork.

I met the artist a couple of times in my life, and both times I was essentially hypnotized by what a nice guy he was, and how generous and open.

When I decided to apply to art school at the University of Washington, my application portfolio contained nothing by Frazetta-style works, and comic book style panels.  As my counselor noted during the interview, my application package was not what the review panel was "used to seeing" and thus the interview was going to be "more important that usual."

I was accepted, and in my subjective... cough, cough... opinion, I am currently the second greatest graduate ever from that school... cough, cough.

Two Washington Huskies: Chuck Close and Lenny Campello
Two Washington Huskies: Chuck Close and Lenny Campello
But I digress - a well documented Campello habit, which I call "meandering." In the years since, my respect and awe for Frazetta has continued to grow, and he will always be a key part of my artistic footprint.

A few days ago, while searching for something else, I found a couple of the Frazetta style drawings which I created in 1977 for that epic proposal. They are the work of a 20-year-old seeking to imitate a master artist.

I was clearly no Frazetta (by far), and clearly I was soooo lucky that the university's selection panel saw something in these Napoleon Dynamish amateur drawings... Notice how my "art" signature is even in the style of his iconic signature -- but here they are for posterity:

Frazetta style 1977 drawing by F. Lennox Campello

Frazetta style 1977 drawing by F. Lennox Campello