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James O'Barr is an Americanmarker graphic artist, best known as the creator of the comic book series The Crow.

Personal life

O'Barr, an orphan, was raised in the foster care system. He studied Renaissance sculpture, live models and photographic still lifes.

In the 1990s O'Barr was affiliated with the experimental metal band Trust Obey, which was signed briefly to Trent Reznor's Nothing label before the band was dropped. Trust Obey released the album Fear and Bullets: Music to Accompany The Crow in 1993. The album was packaged with a special edition of The Crow graphic novel.

As of the mid-2000s, O'Barr resides in Texasmarker.

The Crow

In 1978, O'Barr's fiancée, Bethany, was killed by a drunk driver, and he joined the Marines in an effort to cope with the loss. He was stationed in Germanymarker and illustrated combat manuals for the military. While living in Berlinmarker in 1981, O'Barr began work on The Crow as a means of dealing with his personal tragedy. O'Barr was further inspired by a Detroit newspaper account of the murder of a young couple over a $20 engagement ring. After his discharge from the Marines, O'Barr continued his painting and illustration as well as doing lots of odd jobs, including working for a Detroit body shop. The Crow sat on a shelf for seven years, but at last someone wanted to publish it: Gary Reed of Caliber Press. In The Crow, the protagonist and his fiancée are murdered by a gang of criminals. He then returns from the dead to hunt their killers.

O'Barr's own hope that his project would result in a personal catharsis went unfulfilled, he told an interviewer in 1994, saying, "[A]s I drew each page, it made me more self-destructive, if anything....There is pure anger on each page". TheCrow.info: Graphic novel The Crow has sold more than 750,000 copies worldwide.

The book was adapted into a successful film of the same name in 1994, but it resulted in further tragedy. Brandon Lee, who played the main character, was accidentally shot and killed during filming, survived by his then-fiancee Eliza Hutton.

Acclaim

O'Barr was the second American to be awarded the "Storyteller Award" by the International Comic Festival held annually in Angoulême, France.

Bibliography

KEY
  • a = adapted by
  • c = cover by
  • bc = back cover by
  • e = edited by
  • p = pin-up
  • ip = interior pencils by
  • ii = interior inks by
  • ia = interior art by (pencils+inks or painted)
  • s = story by
  • w = written by


Note: If no letters are indicated, all of the above are by O'Barr. All dates refer to first printings.

Comic Books
  • Andi: Sibling #1 (Sabre's Edge, 2001) (bc)
  • Best of Northstar #1 (Northstar, Aug 1992) (ia, w)
  • Black Dominion #1 (Anubis Press, Jul 1993) (p)
  • Black Dominion #1a (Anubis Press, Jul 1993) (p)
  • Bone Saw #1 (Tundra, 1992) (a, e, ia, w)
  • Book of Deady TPB (Sirius, 2006) (ia)
  • Caliber Christmas, A (Caliber Press, Dec 1989) (c, ia, w)
  • Caliber Presents #1 (Caliber Press, Jan 1989) (bc, ia, w)
  • Caliber Presents #2 (Caliber Press, Mar 1989) (c, ia)
  • Caliber Presents #3 (Caliber Press, May 1989) (c, ia, w)
  • Caliber Presents #5 (Caliber Press, Jul 1989) (c, ia)
  • Caliber Presents #15 (Caliber Press, Sep 1990) (ia)
  • Choke, The #2 (Anubis Press, Aug 1993) (c, ia, w)
  • Choke, The #2a (Anubis Press, Aug 1993) (ia, w)
  • Crow, The #1 (Caliber Press, Feb 1989)
  • Crow, The #2 (Caliber Press, Mar 1989)
  • Crow, The #3 (Caliber Press, Aug 1989)
  • Crow, The #4 (Caliber Press, 1989)
  • Crow, The #0: A Cycle of Shattered Lives (Kitchen Sink Press, Dec 1998)
  • Crow, The: Volume One: Pain & Fear (Tundra, Jan 1992)
  • Crow, The: Volume Two: Irony & Despair (Tundra, Mar 1992)
  • Crow, The: Volume Three: Death (Tundra, May 1992)
  • Crow, The HC (Graphitti Designs,1993- 1,500 S&N copies; some w/ slipcase and CD)
  • Crow, The TPB
    • (Kitchen Sink Press, 1993)
    • (Pocket Books, 2002)
  • Crow: Dead Time, The #1 (Kitchen Sink Press/Top Dollar Comics, Jan 1996) (c, s)
  • Crow: Dead Time, The #2 (Kitchen Sink Press/Top Dollar Comics, Feb 1996) (c, s)
  • Crow: Dead Time, The #3 (Kitchen Sink Press/Top Dollar Comics, Mar 1996) (c, s)
  • Crow: Dead Time, The TPB (Kitchen Sink Press/Top Dollar Comics) (bc, s)
  • Crow: Flesh & Blood, The #1 (Kitchen Sink Press/Top Dollar Comics, May 1996) (c)
  • Crow: Flesh & Blood, The #2 (Kitchen Sink Press/Top Dollar Comics, Jun 1996) (c)
  • Crow: Flesh & Blood, The #3 (Kitchen Sink Press/Top Dollar Comics, Jul 1996) (c)
  • Crow: Flesh & Blood, The TPB
    • (Kitchen Sink Press/Top Dollar Comics, 1996) (bc)
    • (Dark Horse Comics, 2004) (b&w versions of original covers)
  • Crow/Razor: Kill the Pain #1 (London Night Studios/Top Dollar Comics, Apr 1998) (c)
  • Crow/Razor: Kill the Pain #2 (London Night Studios/Top Dollar Comics, May 1998) (c)
  • Crow/Razor: Kill the Pain #3 (London Night Studios/Top Dollar Comics, Jul 1998) (c)
  • Cybernetic Liberation Front #1 (Anubis Press, 1993) (c)
  • Dark Angel #20a (CPM Manga, 2000) (c)
  • Dark Fantasies #3 (Dark Fantasy Productions, 1994) (c)
  • Dark Fantasies #3a (red foil) (Dark Fantasy Productions, 1994) (c)
  • Dark Horse Presents #61 (Dark Horse Comics, Apr 1992) (ia, w)
  • Dead Boys #1 (London Night Studios, 1993) (c)
  • Dead Boys #1a (gold) (London Night Studios, 1993) (c)
  • Dead Boys #1b (platinum) (London Night Studios, 1993) (c)
  • Deadworld (v1) #10 Graphic (Caliber Press, Nov 1988) (bc, ii)
  • Deadworld (v1) #10 Tame (Caliber Press, Nov 1988) (bc, c, ii)
  • Deadworld (v1) #11 Tame (Caliber Press, Apr 1989) (c)
  • Deadworld (v1) #12 Tame (Caliber Press, Jun 1989) (c)
  • Deadworld (v1) #13 Tame (Caliber Press, Jul 1989) (c)
  • Deadworld (v1) #14 Tame (Caliber Press, Mar 1990) (c)
  • Deadworld (v1) #16 Tame (Caliber Press, 1990) (c)
  • Deadworld (v1) #17 Tame (Caliber Press, 1990) (c)
  • Deady the Terrible Teddy, Vol. 2 (Sirius, Oct 2005) (ia)
  • Death Rattle (v3) #3 (Kitchen Sink Press, Feb 1995) (c, ia)
  • Freaks Amour #2 (Dark Horse Comics, Sep 1992) (c)
  • French Crow, The TPB (c)
  • Fugitive #1 (Caliber Press, Oct 1989) (ia)
  • Godhead Vol. 2 (Anubis Press, Mar 1993) (c)
  • Hard Looks #3 (Dark Horse Comics, Jul 1992) (a, c, ia)
  • Hard Looks #9 (Dark Horse Comics, Jul 1993) (a, ia)
  • Hard Looks: Adapted Stories TPB
    • (Dark Horse Comics, Sept 1996- 2nd Ed.) (a, ia)
    • (Dark Horse Comics, 1994- 1st Ed. aka Volume 1) (a, ia)
  • Harpy Pin-Up Special #1 (Peregrine Entertainment, Apr 1998) (c)
  • Independent Voices #3 (Peregrine Entertainment, Aug 2001) (c w/ Joseph Michael Linsner)
  • Kabuki Images (Image Comics, Jun 1998) (p)
  • Monster Massacre (Atomeka, 1993) (p)
  • Monster Massacre: Silver Edition (Atomeka, 1993) (p)
  • Monster Massacre Special #1 (Blackball Comics, 1993) (ia, w)
  • Necromancer #2 (Anarchy Press, 1993) (bc)
  • Necromancer #2 Ashcan (Anarchy Press, 1993) (c)
  • Northstar 5th Anniversary Special #1 (Northstar, Mar 1995) (p)
  • Northstar Presents #1: James O'Barr (Northstar, Oct 1994)
  • Northstar Presents #1a: James O'Barr (gold) (Northstar, Apr 1995)
  • Original Sins #1 (ACG, 1999)
  • Pink Dust: Morphine Dreams #1 (Kitchen Sink Press, Aug 1998)
  • Razor #2 (London Night Studios, Feb 1993) (c)
  • Razor: Tour of Fear (London Night Studios, 1993) (bc)
  • Ride: Inertia's Kiss Sketchbook, The (12 Gauge Comics, 2006)
  • San Diego Comic Con Comics #2 (Dark Horse, 1993) (p)
  • Savages #1 (Peregrine Entertainment, Sep 2001)
  • Slash #1 (Northstar, Aug 1992) (c, ia, w)
  • Slash #1a (red foil) (Northstar, Aug 1992) (bc, c, ia, w)
  • Slash #2 (Northstar, Nov 1992) (c, ia, w)
  • Slash #3 (Northstar, Feb 1993) (c)
  • Tasty Bits #1 (ACG, 1999)
  • Vesper #1a (Acetylene, 2001) (c & bc w/ Hannibal King)
  • Vesper #2a (Acetylene, 2001) (c)


Magazines
  • Cobalt 60 Book 3 (Tundra, May 1992) (p)
  • Crow/Razor: Nocturnal Masque (London Night Studios/Top Dollar Comics, Feb 1999) (b&w versions of original covers)
  • Gasm #4 (Stories, Layout, & Press, Apr 1978) (ia, w)
  • Heavy Metal 9/93 (Metal Mammoth, Sep 1993) (ia)
  • Horror: The Illustrated Book of Fears #2 (Northstar, Feb 1990) (a, ia, w)
  • Savage Tales (v2) #4 (Marvel Comics, Apr 1986) (ia, w)
  • Terra X #1 (Insta-Graphics, 1991) (c, ia)


Books

  • Crow: Shattered Lives and Broken Dreams, The
    • (Del Rey, Dec 1998- 1st Ed. Hardcover) (ia, w)
    • (Del Rey, Oct 1999- 1st Ed. Trade Paperback) (ia, w)
    • (Donald M. Grant, Feb 2001[c1998]- S&N; leatherbound, traycased, color plates) (ia, w)
  • Dante's Disciples
    • (White Wolf Publishing, Aug 1996- Trade Paperback) (introduction)
    • (White Wolf Publishing, Sep 1998- Mass Market Paperback) (introduction)
  • Life and Death in Black, White and Blue: Poems and Stories (PublishAmerica, Apr 2006) (c)


Footnotes

  1. Dark Dreams: How the Crow was Born : James O'Barr
  2. DIKE BLAIR | Writing
  3. KAOS2000 Magazine interview with James O'Barr / The Crow
  4. Wizard magazine Link inactive 24 April, 2008
  5. Mercy.Tripod.com


External links




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