Category Archives: Creating Comics


This and all images © DC Comics.

In some 1940s National (DC) titles I’ve found Ira Schnapp story lettering beginning as early as 1945, but in ACTION COMICS I don’t see any until 1947. Many of the mid-40s stories are instead lettered by an unknown person I’m calling Proto-Schnapp for convenience, example above from ACTION #110, July 1947. Proto-Schnapp shares style similarities with Ira, and at first glance this could be Ira’s work. Notice the very regular and classic lettering and the balloon shapes with large scallops that sometimes overlap the panel above. My theory is this was an older letterer who Ira used as a model for his own work, but that’s just a guess. Continue reading


This and all images © DC Comics.

Continuing my research into the work of lettering legend Ira Schnapp, I’ll discuss cover lettering for ACTION here and interior lettering in Part 2. Many National Comics (now DC Comics) in the 1940s were “poster” covers rather than scenes relating to stories inside, but ACTION did buck that trend sometimes, as seen above, and used cover lettering more than many of the others. Issue #75 dated Aug. 1944 has the first example I think might be lettered by Schnapp. Continue reading



This and all images © Marvel.

Continuing my ongoing series about the cover lettering of Danny Crespi at Marvel Comics, mostly from 1974-1978. Photocopies of saved cover lettering from Danny’s files were compiled into a collection by letterer and friend Phil Felix during the 1980s when he worked with Danny on staff at Marvel, and Phil sent me copies. This time I’ll look at pages 33 to 36.  Page 33, above, has many characteristic style points of Danny’s own work on covers, including thick caption borders that extend past the corners (those extensions were trimmed off when photostatted and pasted on the cover art), generally bouncy and somewhat rounded open letters, an upturned right leg on the open R in “Deathcry,” and very wide standard lettering, as seen here on “The menace of the.” Uses of these captions are below. Continue reading

Ira Schnapp in DETECTIVE COMICS Part 2

tec112_03firstschnappThis and all images © DC Comics.

While Ira Schnapp began lettering covers for DETECTIVE COMICS in 1945, the first interior story page lettering I see for him is the Batman and Robin story in issue #112 dated June 1946. The story title on the splash pages is very much his work, and the caption lettering, while still not quite settled into his later style, is right: very square and even. Continue reading

Ira Schnapp in DETECTIVE COMICS Part 1

tec104coverThis and all images © DC Comics.

Continuing my research into the work of lettering legend Ira Schnapp at DC Comics beginning in the 1940s, I’ll start with Ira’s lettering on DETECTIVE COMICS covers. The first work I think might be his is on issue #104 dated Oct. 1945. Most of the early DC covers had little or no text other than the logo and trade dress, but here we see some very fine lettering on a large billboard. Continue reading