Artist To Watch: Rafael Grampá

As I mentioned in my
Pick of the Week, Daredevil #500, amongst the pinups by such artists as Geof Darrow, Joe Quesada, John Romita Sr., and David Mack was a pinup by an artist named Rafael Grampá.  I can’t really put into words what my reaction to his art was like.  It literally stopped the conversation I was having at my local comic book shoppe.  Words fail me, so here, take a look:

Isn’t that just about the greatest thing you’ve ever seen? It’s like no other rendering of Daredevil I’ve ever seen.  The texture of the costume is so…tactile.  I want to run my hands over it to feel the leather. Absolutely amazing.

And so I did some research on Mr. Grampa.  Turns out he’s a Brazilian artist (like the great Fabio Moon and Gabriel Ba’).  He’s already WON A FREAKING EISNER for his work on the anthology 5 (along with Moon, Ba’, Becky Cloonan and Vasilis Lolos).  He was the artist on Hellblazer #250, and released a graphic novel called
Mesmo Delivery (which is being reprinted by Dark Horse) AND THAT’S IT!

Someone needs to put this guy on a mainstream book RIGHT NOW.  Don’t believe me? Well then look at this pinup of Madman I found on his blog:

Daredevil #500 was great and all, but the highlight of this week was my discovery of Rafael Grampá.  Luckily, Dark Horse has snagged him and at the San Diego Comic Con, they announced his next book, Furry Water, that he’s working on with Daniel Pellizzari. Here’s the promo poster:

I have no idea what this book is about, and I don’t care.  I can’t get it soon enough.  Now excuse me while I kick myself for not finding out about this guy BEFORE San Diego and missing my chance to talk to him and get a sketch.

Seriously, it’s art like this that reminds me how amazing comic art can be and how much I absolutely adore it.  I can’t wait to get my hands on Mesmo Delivery and Furry Water.   Rafael Grampá is indeed an artist we need to watch for…

(And before you tell me, I’m sure others have noticed his work before and I’m the last to the table — big deal.  I’m here and ready for more art — bring it on!)


  1. Nothing wrong with just discovering an artist or writer, or anything. Its all part of the fun.

    Great find.

  2. I would pay any amount of money to get a print of that MADMAN pin up. in poster size or get the original art  Thank you  so much for posting this, Ron

  3. This reminds me of the work Frank Quitely is doing right now.

  4. He seems like a mix of Quitely and Kricfalusi, interesting

  5. Third on saying it’s like Quitely.

    Actually it’s like the artist who did ‘Hard Boiled’. But I can’t remember the name…

  6. EDIT: Actually just saw the name in the article. He’s a lot like Geof Darrow.

  7. He is most like Paul Pope to me. I immediately thought of Pope’s costume design for Batman (Year 100). I love it!

  8. I thought it was Paul Pope when I first saw that pinup in Daredevil.  Like Pope’s work, that picture conveys a sense of movement and kinetic energy that just leaps off the page– even with a figure who’s standing still.

  9. good call Ron, that pinup definitely did stand out, which is saying a lot when he’s in the same book as Alex Maleev and Geof Darrow

  10. I didn’t think at all of Frank Quitely when I saw this.

    He should do a cover for Spider-Man!  Wonder what that would look like?

  11. I’ve been anticipating Furry Water! His work is remenisent of Darrow’s line work and a bit like Paul Pope alla Batman: Year 100.

  12. Definitely reminds me of Paul Pope and Frank Quitely’s love child. Awesome take on DD.

  13. I saw Paul Pope at first as well… I do see the Quitely once mentioned…

  14. Agreed.  Quitely and Pope in a pretty package.  I also stopped at this pinup.  I love how all the parts of DD’s costume is made up of boxing gear.  Kneed pads, nose guard, etc.  Just gorgeous.  And look at the homemade hooks on his sticks!!!  Good stuff.  Can’t wait to get more from this guy.

  15. His art reminds me a little of Juan Jose Ryp.  I’d like to see more. 

  16. This was a great pinup.  His work definitely reminds me of Paul Pope.  Looks like some cool stuff that he’s done though.  I’ll definitely be on the lookout for him.

  17. Wow… Thanks for this enlightenment Ron. Does remind me of Quitely and Pope, which are 2 of my favorite artists, but far from a simple mix of the two. He definitley has his own unique style and I’m in love. Too bad Mesmo Delivery is going for about 100 quid at the moment, cannot wait for the reprint. Awesome find!

  18. He did a short story in Hellblazer #250 and it knocked me on my ass.

  19. @ Jim: Yep Pope for sure!  i love that first pinup with the old school yellow and everlast boxing gloves.

  20. I’ve been a fan of Grampa since his cover on ‘5’. He and Cloonan, Moon, and Ba make quite the merry band of artists.

  21. I agree with Ron, in that I have no idea what Furry Water will be about but I will buy it.  What I really want it to be is like an updated version of the early nineties animation Pirates of Dark Water ( I have know idea what made this pop into my head but wouldn’t it be awesome?

  22. Reminds me of Quitely

  23. Mesmo’s Delivery got a big push in my store for some reason.  And, while the story didn’t wow me, the art was fantastic.  Love it love it love it.  Reminds me of awesome.

  24. Ron, on the same note Check out Vasilis Lolos. He´s also one of the 5 crew and quite amazing. I hate to do comparisons but he has a little Paul Pope vibe going on.

  25. I don’t understand why Ron would want him on a mainstream book though. Why restrict his creativity?

  26. He wants him on a mainstream book so that more people will be exposed to his work.

  27. I’m assuming a mainstream book will pay him more, as well.

  28. Also, to see him draw some favorite characters.

  29. Paul Montgomery (@fuzzytypewriter) says:

    Astonishing look. Really, really dig it. 

  30. I would love to see his interpretation of an early Batman or World War 2 Captain America.

    I had a similar reaction, my tendency when I reach the splash/promo pages at the end of a book is too flip through them quickly barely paying attention to them, I flipped by this by 2 or 3 pages immediately stopped and flipped back, took me that 2 or 3 flips to click on how remarkable it was. My store guy told me he did the same thing. He’s a very notable artist, I’m curious what his speed is like.

  31. Glad I wasn’t the only one in love with that Daredevil pinup! Seriously, so awesome.

  32. Thanks for the heads up, Ron! His stuff looks awesome!!

  33. Definitely reminds me of a Quitely/Pope hybrid. And while I love the attention to detail (costumes that actually resemble clothing…), I can’t say I’m the biggest fan of the Daredevil pin-up (although that’s probably just because I hate the yellow DD costume). The Furry Water book looks awesome though.

  34. Anyone remember Frank Teran? Did a buncha lousy Marvel work in the early 2000s? There’s a little bit of him in there too.

  35. MESMO DELIVERY!! it came out last year from Adhouse. I think it is out of print right now, but if you can find it, snatch it up. I thought it was incredible.

  36. I can’t be the only one that thinks that Madman pinup looks a lot like Joe Casey, can I?  The sunglasses, the attitude, it’s like Ron just tried to talk to him or something.

  37. I can see where you’re going there, but… no, I don’t really think that looks like Joe. 😉

  38. Definitely agree with the Quitely comparisons. Great find, Ron.

  39. I loved Mesmo Delivery.  🙂


    the Tiki 

  40. If I can make a tiny nitpick:

    Like Quitely or people that look like this artist; I don’t like the face. I know most of it’s covered with the mask but it just looks off to me. Other then that I love what I’m seeing here. Is there anything Grampa is doing right now or in the future?

  41. @TNC-Read the bottom of the article

  42. I felt the same way when I first encountered the art of Seth Fisher.

  43. man it’s like Mark brooks all over again… this guy’s work is hawt hawt hawt…

  44. Awesome. Awesome. Just awesomely awesome. 

  45. @TheNextChampion: I agree with you. Personally, I like the attention to detail of the clothing, and he seems to have a really good grasp of muscles and body shape, but the faces look a little off, specifically the noses. I also feel like the backgrounds are a bit of a cheat. Not a bad artist.

  46. Get this man on Batman and Robin, he and Quitely should trade off! Make it happen DC…

  47. Ooooo yeah… luv the dardevil, luv the madman.

    and i luv goef darrow!

  48. Dude, relax.  There are some greats out there that I’m still discovering.  And I’m an artist, I should already know these people!!!

    Granpa is gorgeous to look at and you have to think he’s either completely nuts, or has large bottles of asprin by his drawing table to handle all that detail.  It’s just so rich!

    I haven’t seen these latest works, and I’m still trying to track down Mesmo Delivery.  Glad to know DH is reprinting it and having work on something.  Yeah, this dudes gonna blow up.

  49. Here’s a vid of him drawing the last page of Mesmo.

  50. "I want to run my hands over it to feel the leather."

    Oh Ron, you flirt!