Marvel Comics’ one-time head colorist, Marie Severin, has passed away at the age of 89, following a recent stroke. It was her second, following another in 2007. She had been moved to hospice care. Her friend Irene Vartanoff made the announcement of Severin’s passing via Facebook.
Severin broke into the comic book industry in the late 1940s, following a path paved by her brother John Severin. After coloring one issue of a comic for publisher EC, she was made the company’s regular colorist for its entire line. Unfortunately, the gory EC comics were put out of business by the Comics Code Authority. Severin transitioned over to Atlas Comics before leaving the industry entirely. She returned to Atlas in the late 1950s and remained with them after they changed their name to Marvel Comics. In addition to coloring, Severin became a penciller, drawing the first five issues of ‘The Incredible Hulk’.
In 1972, she stopped coloring in order to focus on penciling and inking. Her skill at capturing likenesses led to Marvel making her the penciler of their parody comic ‘Not Brand Echh’ and later tasking her with illustrating licensed merchandise for their special projects division.
She helped pencil the art for one of the earliest Marvel Comics to star a female lead, ‘The Cat’. After that, Severin co-created one of Marvel’s flagship female superheroes, Spider-Woman, and is credited with designing her iconic red and yellow costume. She was also a major contributor to Marvel’s child-oriented Star Comics line in the 1980s.
Marvel let Severin go in the late 1990s following their restructuring after declaring bankruptcy. She continued to work as an artist until the mid-2000s.
In 1974, she was bestowed the Shazam Award for Best Humor Penciler. She was awarded the Inkpot Award at the 1988 San Diego Comic-Con, then in 2001, she was inducted into the Will Eisner Comics Hall of Fame.
Source: The Hollywood Reporter