Jeffrey Catherine Jones ( January 10,1944-May, 2011) was a successful painter, illustrator and comic artist whose work best known from late 1960, early 1970s to the 2000s. Jones produced approximately 150 covers for many different types of books through 1976 and she also dabbed to fine art during the later period of her career. Although Jones gained her reputation as Jeff Jones and lived as male for a long time, she later changed her name and acknowledge as female at the age of 55.
Jones’ artwork graced the covers of such iconic fantasy works as Fritz Leiber’s Fafhrd and the Grey Mouser. And her comics work included everything from Batman covers to racy, adventurous comics for Heavy Metal and other publications.
In 1967, She graduated with a degree in geology but like any other illustrator, she immediately moved to New York to pursue her art career. From the mid-60s, Jones began to produce illustrations for fanzines such as ERB-dom, Styx, Heritage and Amra and she would mostly draw muscular male or beautiful women.
She made her way up as a mainstream comic artist after releasing her first comic Spasm and finished a handful of work for DC comic. He would write and illustrate lushly one-page black and white strip for the IDYL series from 1972 to 1975. In the early,
And in the early 1980s, Jones embarked on a new strip entitled I’m Age for Heavy Metal that was, if anything, even more, obscure than his previous comic strip. Jones, of course, never bothered explaining his most abstruse strips, leaving his readers to puzzle over the meanings as they wondering. Idyl was intended as satire and whimsy.
In 1976, Jones helped form The Studio, a group of artists who helped redefine modern book and comic book illustration. She was awarded the Yellow Kid award from the International Comics and Cartooning Exhibition. In 1986, Jones received the World Fantasy Award for Best Artist. By the early 1990s, she had moved away from commercial art to pursue painting.
While Jones was incredibly prolific early on (averaging a painting a week at his peak), and so painting dozens of book covers every year from 1968 until 1977, she eventually renounced commercial illustration, claiming, “It is my firm opinion that illustration is immoral.” She began making her living almost solely from personal work that was published in portfolios and prints. The epitome of this moment was perhaps her work as part of “The Studio,” a massive loft in New York City that she shared with Michael Kaluta, Barry Windsor-Smith and Bernie Wrightson. All four were attempting to break out of the work-for-hire life, to varying results. Only very occasionally after this did Jones take on illustration assignments such as Queens Walk in the Dust, which she deemed worthy of her prodigious talents. As Jones noted many years after giving up commercial art,
Jones inspired a whole generation of artists to reach for something more vivid and thrilling in their fantasy and comics artwork. Jones was also one of the most successful transgender artists in comics and fantasy art.
From all 70s illustrator that I had seen, Jones is my favourite one. Not only her drawing and painting skill is astonishing, I think that Jones’s imagination and how she layout all the details in her works is ahead of her time. The way she drew figure is fascinating, it is not stiff like other illustrators, but it has a strong movement. In all her works, she used a perfect amount of detail to hight light the main character so. In particular, she did not put many details for the figure’s hair, but the flow of it look quite natural.