The passing of a legend…
Some phans may be puzzled as to why it’s taken ChronicleChamber so long to post about the untimely passing of one of the greatest artists to not only grace The Phantom but comics in general. The real, honest reason for this is because it was tough. Very tough.
There are very few celebrities out there that I feel strongly toward. Sure, I’ve my favorite actors and actresses and so on, but very few in my 30 years have truly saddened me with their passing. In fact, up until now, only one had. Paul Ryan is the second.
Myself, Jermayn and several other phans had the pleasure of meeting Paul at the 2014 SupaNova con in Sydney. We bothered him from the moment the doors opened on the day of the con and even afterwards he couldn’t get away from us as he was the guest of honour at the Lee Falk Memorial Bengalla Explorer’s Club dinner that night.
My overwhelming memory of Paul was just how great a bloke he was. He listened to everyone who wanted to talk to him, he kindly signed all the stuff that was thrown at him and he was incredibly generous and honest in the tales he told about working on The Phantom. The highlight for me was watching Paul create some Phantom artwork live. It was amazing and something I’ll never forget.
Outside of The Phantom, Paul has one of the most impressive resumes in comics. Having worked for both DC and Marvel, his art has appeared in Batman, Iron Man, Spider-Man, Avengers, and a defining run on Fantastic Four among others.
At only 66 Paul was taken much too soon. Considered by many as one of the best artists to have worked in the industry, he is going to be very, very sorely missed.