In Memory of Josh Medors (1976-2012)

In Memory of Josh Medors

I first encountered Josh Medors’ work when discussing the rising popularity of sketches with a friend.  My buddy showed me a piece that Josh had done for him.  He advised me to talk to Josh if I was interested in growing my own sketch collection, as Josh worked hard for his fans, producing convention sketches that were often mistaken as published pinups.

Josh’s published work consisted of indie creations (Willow Creek), covers (Moon Knight, Living Corpse), and interior work (GI Joe: America’s Elite, 30 Days of Night).  He worked on a number of other horror and fantasy titles such as Fused, Grimm Fairy Tales, Frank Frazetta’s Swamp Demon, and Child’s Play; however, his biggest impact was on the convention scene.  Josh’s popularity spread like a grass roots movement.  Once he drew for someone, that person inevitably showed their new artwork to all their friends, which continued to build Medors’ fan base.

When I finally met him a few months later on Free Comic Book Day at Packrat Comics in his hometown of Columbus, Ohio, Josh had already been tragically diagnosed with a rare form of spinal cancer.  Throughout his chemotherapy treatments, Josh was as strong and true a soldier as the characters he drew.  He made numerous convention appearances, sometimes at the Hero Initiative Booth and sometimes at a table with his friend and fellow artist, Sean Forney.  Josh’s output slowed a bit while being treated, but the quality of his work never faltered.  It was a rare privilege to commission Josh that day, and when he insisted on taking my piece home with him to finish, I realized how dedicated and unique of an artist he was.

I next met Josh at the Motor City Con in Novi, MI where he presented me with one of my earliest and most favorite Wolverine drawings.

Despite his immense talent, Josh had an unassuming and relaxed demeanor.  He was friendly and eager to talk with fans.  Josh was a great listener with the ability to take a sketch idea, internalize it, and create a piece of artwork that included the necessary elements of the character along with his own stylistic choices, evidenced in the above artwork.  He told me that he wanted me to have a sketch that I could show off to others, as my friend did to me.

Over the next few months I acquired two more Wolvie pieces by Mr. Medors.


Josh created a moody effect by adding highlights to artwork drawn on colored paper, as demonstrated in all three pieces.

Months later at Wizard World Philly, I met Ariel Olivetti, an internationally known artist who also excels at creating the effect of adding highlights to artwork on colored paper.  After commissioning Mr. Olivetti, he was interested in looking at the rest of my collection.  He opened the portfolio to Josh’s first piece, was immediately intrigued, and commented on its professionalism.  In a fun turn of events, he continued to leaf through my portfolio, eventually stopping on my other two Medors sketches.  He inquired about the artist, without realizing it was the same in all three cases!  Olivetti’s English is limited, as he hails from Argentina, but Medors’ artwork transcends the language barrier.

The last time I saw Josh was at this year’s Cincinnati Comic Expo.  I made a point to tell him that his hard work did not go unnoticed and one of the fans I created was none other than Ariel Olivetti.  Josh was thankful, and remained modest.  He sketched all day, steadily completing pieces.  He even said he was pain free and feeling great.  It appeared to me that he had beaten the cancer…

…Which made his death last week that much more surprising and heartbreaking.

Josh Medors was a colossal talent.  We’ve lost a true hero that enriched our community, but he’ll live on through his family, his friends, and through his work.


One Response.

  1. Brian Jones says:

    Josh was an amazing artist and person. I have no doubt that he would have been working steadily for one of the big two at some point if not for his illness. Godspeed Josh and to your friends and family my deepest sympathies.

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