GASPAR SALADINO in TOMB OF DRACULA Part 2

All images © Marvel. From TOMB OF DRACULA #28, Jan 1975

Continuing my look at the lettering of Gaspar Saladino on covers and stories for this series, Part 1 has his work in 1973-74, this article has the rest. He was always creative, finding new ways to letter the word VAMPIRE each time it appeared.

From TOMB OF DRACULA #35, Aug 1975

One key to Saladino’s open display lettering is the sharp angles and corners. Note also that the open centers of the letters in BROTHER VOODOO have a thinner outline than the outside edges. Gaspar would first outline the whole thing with that thin pen, then go around the outside edge again to make it thicker.

From TOMB OF DRACULA #37, Oct 1975

For variety, this cover lettering is less scary and more what Saladino might have done on a superhero title except for the word UNDEAD.

From TOMB OF DRACULA #39, Dec 1975

The blurb at lower left is meant to suggest an award medallion, but I’m not sure it quite works, though I like the big number one.

From TOMB OF DRACULA #40, Jan 1976

The treatment of DR. SUN here is unusual and intriguing.

From TOMB OF DRACULA #41, Feb 1976

Lots of lettering on this cover, including a clever version of BLADE, and it all fits and reads well.

From TOMB OF DRACULA #42, March 1976

My description of this cover lettering is “classy and exciting.” This is also a better take on an award medallion at bottom right.

From TOMB OF DRACULA #43, April 1976

I think this was Bernie Wrightson’s only work for this the, and Gaspar’s lettering fits it perfectly. A reunion of sorts from their work together on DC’S SWAMP THING.

From TOMB OF DRACULA #44, May 1976

This cover is full of great Gene Colan art and Saladino lettering.

From TOMB OF DRACULA #45, June 1976

Another fine version of BLADE, and Gaspar curves HANNIBAL KING to fill the available space.

From TOMB OF DRACULA #46, July 1976

These captions have some of Gaspar’s upper and lower case script for variety.

From TOMB OF DRACULA #48, Sept 1976

A rare close-up of the main character is framed by excellent display lettering.

From TOMB OF DRACULA #51, Dec 1976

Notice the small breaks in the border of the burst at right, something Gaspar did to add texture and interest.

From TOMB OF DRACULA #58, July 1977

This is the only full story lettered by Saladino, he’s credited himself with just his first name, as he liked to do, and matched it with a short version of colorist Marie Severin’s name, with her okay I’m sure. UNDEAD is done with a dry brush, something Gaspar was good at.

From TOMB OF DRACULA #62, Jan 1978

Another dynamic and creative title on this title page, all that Saladino lettered.

From TOMB OF DRACULA #65, July 1978

It looks like extra space was left for the repeating top banner, Gaspar’s title should have been moved up to fill it. I like the credits style here.

From TOMB OF DRACULA #69, April 1979

Saladino’s final cover lettering, and nearly the end of the series, these open letters have serifs in some places and are impressively odd.

To sum up, I found Saladino lettering on these covers: 6-8, 10, 14-17, 19-28, 35, 37, 39-46, 48, 51, 69. That’s 31 in all. Below are the details of his story lettering.

#10: page 1 only

#58: 18pp

#62: page 1 only

#65: page 1 only

That’s 21 pages in all. More articles in this series and others you might enjoy are on the COMICS CREATION page of my blog.

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