Tag Archives: Parsons school of Design

Printmaking at Parsons, Fall 1986.

Starfire etching by Suzanne Forbes working as Rachel Ketchum Fall 1986 detailI didn’t want to take printmaking.

I considered it a waste of time, because I didn’t intend to be a fine artist who made prints; I was going to be a comic artist, whose artwork was sent to printers!

But it was required, so I made superheroine prints!

Scarlet Witch lithograph by Suzanne Forbes working as Rachel Ketchum Fall 1986This lithograph of the Scarlet Witch is very gothic!

I was 19 and very sad, but also even then Wanda was a tragic character..

Warrior Woman lithograph by Suzanne Forbes working as Rachel Ketchum Fall 1986I was absolutely just meeting the requirements in this last litho.

It is 100% phoning it in. I did like the print shop, which was a world of its own with so many arcane processes and chemicals, and the print teacher, who always smelled like the garlic he was taking against a parasite infection he’d gotten in Belize.

I just didn’t like all the hassle involved in printmaking! It is such a goddam pain. Even then, at 19, I had limited energy and couldn’t tolerate the rubbing of the plates. Nothing looks like a hand-pulled print, though.

As far as I know, these were the first fine art prints ever made of Kory and Wanda!

I hand-colored a few of the Kory etchings with Dr. Martin’s dye, just her golden skin, green eyes and orange hair I think. I gave one to Marv Wolfman at San Diego in…’90 maybe? As a thank you, for all the Titans gave to me.

These prints had never been photographed; until now, no record of them existed – if we had a fire or flood they would just be gone forever.

I am so grateful to my Patrons on Patreon, whose monthly financial support makes it possible for me to take time to document my art archives.

For the archives: My queer gaze, as expressed in pinups.

Pinup of flapper Spring 1982 or 3 by Rachel Ketchum aka Suzanne ForbesI was always drawing pretty women, as a teen.

I was inspired by the great illustrators, like Alphonse Mucha and Maxfield Parrish, then by SF artists – by sixteen my bedroom was wallpapered with Boris Vallejo- and then by the comic artists who were known for their “Good Girl Art”, which does not mean art of good girls.

I believe the golfing flapper above dates from Spring 1983, when I had dropped out of Stuyvesant and was taking figure drawing classes at The Art Student’s League of New York, waiting to be old enough to matriculate at Parsons. Before I discovered comics in Fall 1984, I wanted to be a newspaper fashion illustrator, which was a total real job then!

This drawing of a futuristic sex worker, in an imagined 2001, is probably from late 1982 or early 1983.

I can date most of my old drawings pretty well by what I had learned of my craft at that point! This drawing shows the street-hustling sex worker (although that term didn’t exist then) checking in with her boss via a little Bluetooth type headset, and dosing herself with drugs via a push-button in her hand that goes to her arm. Not a judgment – I just knew a lot of sex workers who were junkies in my teens, and I thought it would be nice if it was convenient for them. It looks like I designed it to be safe and prevent overdoses.

Lingerie girl probaly 1983 by Suzanne Forbes working as Rachel KetchumA girl in lingerie, probably 1982 or 1983.

I loved lingerie sooo much as a teen. Garters and stockings and merry widows!

This bondage girl is from later 1984.

I think it may have been one of the portfolio drawings I used to get into Parsons – you were supposed to do an illustration from a book and I did The Story of O. Yup, I got into Parsons School of Design with a GED and a bunch of smutty pinups.

Fetish pinup drawing by Rachel Ketchum aka Suzanne Forbes Oct 29 1986This one, from 1986, was probably drawn as a present for my friend Chris Claremont.

Because it’s signed. I didn’t sign most work until the 90s, except when giving it as a gift. Why didn’t I sign my art? Because it wasn’t good enough to meet my own standards yet most of the time. It didn’t look like what I saw in my head yet.

And I was really IN the process of learning to get better, and really just working the process. Some days I still am!

Sexy Robot Pinup by Suzanne Forbes working as Rachel Ketchum Fall 1988Sexy Robot!

From Fall 1988.

Sexy girl with holster by Suzanne Forbes working as Rachel Ketchum Fall 1988Sexy girl with gun!

Also probably from 1988.

Sexy Space Girl by Suzanne Forbes working as Rachel Ketchum circa 1988Sexy Space Girl!

Again I’m thinking 1988, based on the delicate Pentel rollerball inking.

I am incredibly grateful to my Patreon Patrons, whose monthly financial support makes it possible for me to take time to document my art archives.

Until today, no modern media record of these drawings existed – if we had a fire or flood they would just be gone forever.