Aug. 28, 2014, would have been the 97th birthday of Jack Kirby, a fact marked on social media during the day with a special hashtag devoted to the co-creator of Iron Man, Captain America, X-Men and countless other Marvel and DC characters, #WakeUpAndDraw.
Created by the nonprofit organization the Hero Initiative in 2012, #WakeUpAndDraw recognizes the contributions Kirby made to the comic medium by inviting artists and other comic book professionals to create their own interpretations of his creations. The art is shared on social media with the appropriate hashtag, with many pieces later being auctioned off to benefit the Hero Initiative.
— Jerry Ordway (@JerryOrdway) August 28, 2014
— Steve Lieber (@steve_lieber) August 28, 2014
— Mahmud Asrar (@MahmudAsrar) August 28, 2014
— andy kuhn (@andykuhn) August 28, 2014
Kirby, who was born Jacob Kurtzberg in 1917, started working in the comic industry in the 1930s, coming to attention in 1940 when he co-created Captain America with Joe Simon. After decades of working at multiple publishers — including the creation of the romance genre of comics — he made his home at the nascent Marvel Comics in the 1960s, co-creating the majority of that publisher’s superhero characters and mythology with Stan Lee until 1970, when he left to work for competitor DC, where he created the beloved “Fourth World” series of titles, among many others.
Kirby kept active in later years, returning to Marvel to create new series, including The Eternals and Devil Dinosaur, before moving into independent work such as Captain Victory and the Galactic Rangers, Silver Star and later animation design. Kirby died in 1994.