Saturday, May 12, 2012

Tony DeZuniga Remembered (1932-2012).

05.12.2012 – Tony DeZuniga passed away in the morning or May 11, 2012 at 1:30AM based on Sandy Sansolisannouncement post at the Comic Odyssey’s Facebook Group Page. Mang Tony as fondly be called by everyone is the first Filipino to break into the international Comics industry.

DeZuniga pave the way to other aspiring artists to make it in their own in this field. He co-created some of the dark and interesting characters for DC Comics. He is most popularly known for his creation of the western anti-hero in Jonah Hex with John Albano (who passed away in May 2005).

Mr. DeZuniga has a huge contribution in the Philippine comics industry as well as in the international scene leaving a legacy of great art who worked not only for DC Comics but in Marvel as well as former videogame giant Sega.

I first met Mang Tony in 2007 during his first one-man exhibit at The Crucible in SM Megamall dubbed “Superheroes” and followed with his second one also in the venue in 2009. He was everyone’s father or grand father in the comics industry. He was direct to the point on how he expresses his work and what he has to say. The last time I saw him was during Komikon in Novemeber 2011 and prior to that a talk he held in Secret Fresh where he gave me a print of Jonah Hex which he signed.

Tony DeZuniga speaks to the public in his last talk held at the Secret Fresh Gallery. November 5, 2011.

He’s more familiar doing human artwork and rarely seen drawing science fiction related characters. Though for anyone who has not heard about this story I previously wrote about this sometime in December 2011. This is the story how he had drawn the only Transformers character in the sketch. He was asked to do a commission sketch by a friend during WonderCon 2008 along with other greats in Ernie Chan and Alex Nino.

It could be the only non-human sketch art Mang Tony has made but I may be wrong. My friend based in San Francisco California was a volunteer during WonderCon 2008 and this was his present to me.

The rare non-human sketch art done by Tony DeZuniga during WonderCon 2008.

This sketch art will forever be something I would keep in my memory about Tony DeZuniga. It’s not everyday you will see him draw Iron Hide a Transformer from the original cartoon. It has simple lines but something he won’t be doing again and this would very special to me about Tony DeZuniga.

With Tony DeZuniga during his one-man exhibit "Superheroes 2" in January 2009 at The Crucible in SM Megamall. 

Thank you for your love drawing in bringing such wonderful artwork Tony DeZuniga. Just like anyone who never had a grand father we look up to you and we’ll miss you for being that individual who made our dreams a reality.

Rest in Peace. Sir.

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