1. Please tell us a little about yourself.
I’m a 57 year old UK resident, born and bred in Liverpool, a UK sea-port city that most US citizens will recognize as being the birthplace of the legendary pop-group, the Beatles. My era of nostalgia is the 1960s. This was a wonderful time for a youngster to enjoy a childhood; in addition to the music of the times, I was weaned on a mixture of home-grown titles (the UK has its own comic-book culture) and the plentiful American imports. UK comic-books were quite diverse, covering a wide range of genres, whereas American counterparts were heavy on Superhero stuff. I enjoyed many things!
2. Which piece in your gallery is your favorite?
Which piece in my CAF gallery is my favourite? That would be an incredibly difficult choice as my interests are just too wide and varied! I love all the old EC stuff, even though EC was a 1970’s discovery for me... Frank Hampson’s Dan Dare artwork (also from the 1950s) is another biggie with me, through to the superhero stuff of the 1960s (that I grew-up on). Currently, I’m big on British artist Kev Walker’s painted artworks. That guy is a master-technician with the paintbrush and his original artwork, which I’m blessed with ownership of several examples, looks totally flawless!
An example of a favourite piece of art I own would be Al Feldstein's cover art to Weird Fantasy #14. If you care to read the write-up that accompanies this piece in my CAF, it will give you an insight into what makes me tick as a collector.
Television also played a big part in my youth... from America we were treated to The Outer Limits which remains, to this day, my all-time-favourite TV series, and in the UK, in 1963, I was privileged to witness the debut episode of a long-running science-fiction series that some of you might have heard of called Doctor Who...
I’m married with a grown-up daughter, currently attending university, still live in the Merseyside Liverpool area and work in Warehouse Management Systems.
In recent years I’ve shed a lot of my artwork possessions to help fund a healthier lifestyle, but still continue to collect in an adjusted modest style. Although prices have dramatically escalated for many things, I still find there are lots of affordable and worthwhile artworks available to be had. No one should despair – just be realistic in your expectations!
I’ve no truck with the type of collector whose collecting habits are governed by monetary value... I admire and identify with the type of collector who buys from the heart. ‘Facts and figures’ analytic types bore the pants off me! I admire passion in a collector not monetary appraisal.
3. How long have you been collecting comic art and what prompted you to start?
I’ve been collecting original artwork since early 1982. I was spurred into collecting art as a result of subscribing to Russ Cochran’s EC Library project. As Russ would release a complete EC title in hardback format, Bill Gaines would then release via Russ all the existing artwork from that comic-book series. At one time I owned several hundred pages of EC art, which have since been sold or traded-away! Such is life...
4. How do you display/store your collection at home?
How do I display or store my art at home, you ask? Most of my art is stored away in locked filing cabinets, with just a few pieces matted and framed on display in my small study. Fact is my wife just doesn’t appreciate the idea of me having comic-book plastered around the house!
The one piece of artwork, from my collection, that she is happy to see displayed in my main living area is an illustration by the great Fortunino Matania, an illustrator of prominence to those knowledgeable collectors familiar with his work and of great historical importance. Matania served as an official front-line artist during World War I, at a time when the use of photography was strictly censored, and his artwork graced the pages of most European newspapers of the time displaying the horrors of war. Adolf Hitler is documented as having a Matania WWI print on display in his Bavarian fortress, the Berchtesgaden! Britain’s Imperial War Museum, in London, also owns important Matania originals.
5. What are your top five most wanted original pages or commissions?
To be honest I squirm at a lot of fans’ commission ideas (usually involving super-heroines in various states of undress) and prefer the route of published pieces. Unfortunately most of the prime materials, such as Steve Ditko Amazing Spider-Man covers if you can find one, are beyond the reach of mortal men. Realistically, I think I’ve owned at one time or other most of my achievable aims in comic-book artwork collecting. My yearning has long since been sated... and anything else is a bonus.
View Terry Doyle's Gallery