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Tony DeZuniga

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Tony DeZuniga is a Filipino comic-book artist best known for his work for DC Comics, where he co-created the characters Jonah Hex and Black Orchid.

DeZuniga began his comics career at the age of 16, as a letterer for a weekly magazine whose contributors included comic-book artists Alfredo Alcala and Nestor Redondo, who became mentors. DeZuniga received a Bachelor of Science degree in commercial art from the University of Santo Tomas in the Philippines, and in 1962 came to the United States to study graphic design in New York City. He returned to his native country to work in advertising and to freelance for Filipino comics.

Returning to New York City in the late 1960s, DeZuniga broke into American comic books under editor Joe Orlando at DC Comics, inking pencil art by Ric Estrada on a romance comics tale for Girl's Love Stories #153. DeZuniga's American-comics debut as a penciler came with a self-inked Doctor Thirteen story for Phantom Stranger #12 (Mar./Apr. 1971).

DeZuniga went on to become a regular contributor at DC, co-creating with writer John Albano the long-running Western character Jonah Hex, and with Sheldon Mayer the first Black Orchid. DeZuniga also served as an introduction to what would be a 1970s influx of Filipino artists to American comics, prompting Orlando and DC editor-in-chief Carmine Infantino to visit the Philippines in 1971 to scout talent. Among the artists found there who would soon become mainstays of both DC and Marvel Comics were Alfredo Alcala, Alex Niño, Nestor Redondo, and Gerry Talaoc.

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