Today is Barry Windsor-Smith's birthday. Y'know, even after all these years, I still can't get used to that surname. I know, I know, it's his proper family name and all that, but to me, he'll always be little ol' Barry Smith, the genius who introduced me to Conan. ( I'm the same with Howard Chaykin, by the way. It's Howie, dammit! ) Anyway, after Bazza left ConanThe Barbarian, he didn't do much in the way of comic work, concentrating on publishing his own prints through The Gorblimey Press, and putting together legendary art book The Studio. But there was the occasional dip into graphic waters, like this gorgeous wraparound cover for Star*Reach, a preliminary for the painting Artemis & Apollo.
And here's Baz hawking said item, from the back of the same issue. Hey, it was the '70's. We all dressed like this.
The major return to comics came a few years later though, in the February '83 issue of Epic Illustrated, with this incredible piece The Beguiling. A Pre-Raphaelite comic strip no less.
And finally, because you can't talk about Smith without talking about Conan, here's the full, spectacular cover to the Conan Treasury Edition. Hey Dark Horse, that's what Conan looks like.
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