Comics historian and illustrator, Greg Theakston has passed away at the age of 65. Theakston, who used the pseudonym Earl P. Wooten, was known for his research as a comics historian under his independently published Pure Imagination imprint, as well as for developing the Theakstonizing process used in comics restoration. Before digital scanning and manipulation was possible, Theakstonization was a process that bleached published comic book pages of color, leaving the page with its black and white inks, to be recolored for republishing purposes.
Theakston contributed to Detroit’s Fantasy Fans and Comic-collector’s Group’s fanzine The Fan Informer, and his own publication, The Aardvark Annual. He would later work with artist Jim Steranko at his Supergraphics publishing company. Theakston also inked samples of Jim Starlin’s early pencils, which helped Starlin gain his first work at Marvel Comics in 1972. Theakston also worked in other mainstream publications such as Playboy, Rolling Stone, The New York Times, TV Guide and National Lampoon. He worked for MAD Magazine as an illustrator for 10 years.
In addition to his sprawling publishing career, Theakston helped organize the Detroit Triple Fan Fair, which is credited as one of the first conventions in the United States dedicated to comic books. In 2010 Theakston received the Shel Dorf Torch Bearer’s Award for “Preserving the Flame of the Spirit of Comics and Carrying the Torch Forward in the Comic Industry.”
Theakston passed away on April 22, 2019. We at Multiversity Comics send our deepest condolences to his friends and family.