Albert Deschesne, who had lettered for Comicraft for some 23 of our 25 years, passed away unexpectedly yesterday. Albert was renown in the Comicraft studio for coming up with clever lettering shortcuts, priding himself on being a Power User of Mac computers — from teaching us all Quickeys to figuring out a way of “tricking a PC into thinking it was a Mac” — and keeping everyone’s computers up and running back when freezes and crashes were a regular part of the day.

Albert was as sweethearted as they come, and unselfishly shared his discoveries when it came to doing things faster or better. He came up with the brilliant Layer Method of merging tails and balloons, as a way of making corrections quicker and easier. There isn’t a letterer in the industry today that doesn’t owe Albert a debt of gratitude for that technique alone.

Albert’s knowledge of DC characters and history was unrivaled at Comicraft, and he was enjoying working on the relaunch of JUSTICE LEAGUE as recently as last week. Years ago, when DC sent a Superman bathrobe to Comicraft for Christmas, Albert unashamedly took it home. He was proud to be a geek LONG before it was fashionable.

Albert was a cancer survivor and although we knew that he struggled off and on with health issues, I guess we always thought he would battle through for many more years to come. We will miss his unbridled enthusiasm for everything comics, computers, movies and gaming, and his unflagging good cheer.

The Comicraft crew, circa 1998: Dave, Kolja, Jason, Emerson, Rich, Saida, Albert, Siobhan, Oscar & Eddie.
MIA: JG, Jimmy & Wes.