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Home > Harry Potter News

Illustrator Kelly Freas dies at 82

[with info from the Associated Press]

Kelly Freas, an influential illustrator who produced sleek, stirring images for science fiction and fantasy books and helped shape the image of Mad Magazine mascot Alfred E. Newman, has died. He was 82.

According to news reports today, Freas also created the picture of a werewolf that appeared in the movie Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban.

Werewolf illustration in Prisoner of Azkaban

In a career that spanned more than 50 years, Freas illustrated the covers or the pages of books by writers including Isaac Asimov, Robert Heinlein, Arthur C. Clarke, A.E. Van Vogt, Poul Anderson and Frederik Pohl.

In the 1950s, he spent seven years as the main cover artist of Mad Magazine, creating stylishly detailed portraits and helping to make famous Alfred E. Newman, the freckled, front-tooth-deprived purveyor of the phrase, "What? Me Worry?"

Freas died in his sleep Sunday at his home in Los Angeles, said his wife of 16 years, Laura Brodian Freas, the host of a Los Angeles classical music program. The cause of death was old age, she said.

Published January 3, 2005

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