Created by Richard Stark (the pseudonym of writer Donald E. Westlake), the violent and remorseless criminal Parker was the subject of twenty-four Stark novels from 1962-2008. The first PARKER book, The Hunter, was one of four adapted into graphic novels by the late artist Darwyn Cooke. Although Westlake, who died in 2008, never saw the finished graphic novel, he worked with Cooke and even approved the use of the Parker name, something he’d refused the several film adaptations of Parker novels.
This sculpture is based on Cooke’s design for Parker, one authorized by Westlake, as he appeared in THE HUNTER (in subsequent stories, Parker underwent extensive plastic surgery so he wouldn’t be recognized by the criminal underworld; Cooke redesigned Parker’s face accordingly). It was sculpted in Super Sculpey over an aluminum foil and wire armature and stands about 7 3/4″ tall. It’s painted in a high-key color scheme where I tried to match the style of the colored inkwash technique Cooke utilized in his graphic novel adaptation.
Batman’s tumultuous relationship with Catwoman began in 1940’s BATMAN #1, written by Bill Finger and with art credited to Bob Kane. Originally a burglar called the Cat, Selina Kyle’s costumes, methods, motivations and origin over the years changed more than any other Batman villain. The only constant has been the mutual, usually unfulfilled attraction between them.
(Usually. In recent years their relationship in the comics has been more explicitly sexual. In DC’s alternate “Earth 2” Bruce Wayne and Selina Kyle married and produced a child, Helena Wayne, who became the crimefighting Huntress.)
This piece depicts her in the most-recent version of her costume, designed by Darwyn Cooke and taking a page from Emma Peel, it’s my favorite of her many looks (except for the Doc Marten boots: how’s she supposed to sneak around in those?).
I hope you’ll come back for tomorrow’s black and white installment of 12 Days of the Batman!
This Summer I taught a sculpture class, during which I did a rough one-off sculpture (as opposed to something I cast and duplicate) of Darwyn Cooke’s version of Richard Stark’s character Parker. My talented and prolific (seriously Erica, you’re making everyone else look bad) friend Erica Henderson is going to paint it. Here are the “before” pics: