Gabriel Rodriguez’ Locke & Key Artist’s Edition Covers Portfolio

Presenting a selection of some of the finest and most inventive cover images from Joe Hill and Gabriel Rodriguez’ best-selling and critically acclaimed horror series, all in the IDW award-winning Artist’s Edition format. 12 intricate and thought-provoking images by Rodriguez, all scanned directly from the original art and delivered in a lovely hardcover case.

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As with all AE format material (Artist’s Editions, Artifact Editions, Gallery Editions, Art Editions, Studio Editions, etc), this is a collection of classic comic material and I’ll be reviewing the book and not the story. For a complete list of all current and announced editions, with review links, please visit our Index. Also, see What is an Artist’s Edition and our Artist Index.

Following up on the first Locke & Key portfolio from 2017, this one adjusts the name and includes only covers. Twelve portfolio plates in total. Eleven new images and one cover we had in blue pencil from the last portfolio but now inked.

Scan quality is excellent: all images are clear and without any visual defects. While most are white a few are off-white and have been signed, making me think they’re coming from a different source. Five people are thanked so it’s a safe assumption.

No margin notes outside of production information and signatures. Blacks vary in gradients but visible throughout. Lots of blue pencils, minimal correction fluid. Signatures on several plates appear cropped and make me wonder if the scans were cropped for a uniform size.

Dahlk’s portfolio design for the line continues with a solid background colour, single coloured circle pattern and two colour logo, with a colour bar at the bottom. Once inside we get four images on the colophon, using the burgundy from the cover. The Table Of Contents appears behind the plates. On the back of each plate is printed “THIS IS NOT ORIGINAL ART”.

Production is IDW excellence once again. Thick matte paper stock in a cardboard case. The paper sleeve give some wiggle room but you can’t put all twelve plates in at once. The portfolio comes in a clear mylar bag.

Including the back cover image in the Table Of Contents strikes me as an odd move, since this is a portfolio and the back cover isn’t a portfolio plate. Yes, that image from Locke & Key Master Edition is small, but they could have put all three cover images on one portfolio plate if including it was of some importance.