|via Back Issue Ben, circa 2011|
Christopher Cornejo: It would definitely be Ed Brubaker that I always end up checking out simply because the kind of stuff he does more or less is up my alley. I mean I even checked out Fatale and Incognito, which in their own ways are some sort of hybrid of other genre meshed into what he normally does in noir/crime stories. I didn't like the actual output on paper but I definitely felt the effort he put into it is very commendable, I actually bought the Incognito deluxe edition just for kicks.
Travis Hedge Coke: Ann Nocenti. I almost always have a great time with her comics, and the few times I haven't, there was enough beautifully fantastic in the comic, I'm happy I read it anyway. One of the first Vertigo writers, one of the best Daredevil writers, and provider of the best sociopolitical fever dreams in comics. (Runners up: Moto Hagio, Kenichi Sonoda, Darko Macan, and Colleen Coover.)
J.d. Shofner: When I pass a rack of comics or a shelf of graphic novels and trades, Grant Morrison's name on something always gets a closer look.
LaMar Forte: Since Duy said George Perez, and I would only say Ivan Reis with the caveat of Oclair Albert inking him, I'm going to say The God Alan Davis. That guy could draw a 14 issue miniseries of a knitting bee in a jook joint, and I'd cop it fresh off the lot without looking at it, okay? Let me tell y'all something right quick...I like creators that not only make pretty pages, but build universes and sell you on what you're seeing. And for pencillers that takes draftsmanship and layout skills, both of which Mr. Davis has in abundance. You have to have those so the writer isn't doing the heavy lifting in such a visual medium, are you following me?
Back Issue Ben: For any comic, I've always believed I need at least 2 out of 3 of the following to be appealing; creators, character, or story idea. There's not really any creator I'd get regardless without at least one of the other 2. Warren Ellis probably comes the closest for writers. David Aja or Sara Pichelli right now for artists. Probably somebody like Stan Sakai since he's so excellent on Usagi Yojimbo. Wait, scratch all that. It's Walt Simonson.
Matt: Despite not being a fan of his endings, Brian K. Vaughan. His story ideas are good and often well-executed. I've enjoyed Ex Machina, Y, Pride of Baghdad, the first few issues of Saga I've read. The ideas grab me and the world is developed and fleshed. The stories go somewhere and spend time making you care about characters.
Antonio Nelson Ruiz: Aja. Aja aja aja aja aja aja. Aja aja, aja. Aja aja aja aja. Aja aja aja aja aja aja aja.
Peter Turingan: Gotta be the late great Darwyn Cooke for me. I think I own every comic he's made except for the Before Watchmen books (and yet I might still buy those someday, maybe). Don't know if any active artist today will get that same treatment from me. Jamie McKelvie, Moon and Ba and maybe Steve Epting also get automatic looks from me but qualifiers apply (genre, price, etc).
Matthew Laaksonen: For me it was definitely Darwyn Cooke. Out of current guys, Mike Allred. Everything he works on is cool and different. His work is gorgeous.
Jeff White: Warren Ellis, very rarely does he disappoint with whatever he's writing