A giant in the comic book illustration world who moved to Nova Scotia's Eastern Shore about a decade ago has entered palliative care for what his family calls "a bout with aggressive cancer."

Darwyn Cooke is a Canadian artist best known for his work with DC Comics. He was writer and artist of The New Frontier series and an adaptation of the Richard Stark Parker novels.

He also helped redesign the DC character of Catwoman and worked in animation.

On Friday, Cooke's wife Marsha posted on his blog that the 53-year-old was ill.

"It is with tremendous sadness that we announce Darwyn is now receiving palliative care following a bout with aggressive cancer. His brother Dennis and I, along with our families, appreciate the outpouring of support we have received," the blog read.

Darwyn Cooke

Illustration by Darwyn Cooke. (Darwyn Cooke)

Jay Aaron Roy, owner of Cape and Cowl Comics and Collectables in Lower Sackville, N.S., is friends with Cooke. He said Cooke has lived in the province for "at least a decade" and has visited both his home in Nova Scotia and in Florida.

Roy said Cooke has achieved something that many in the industry only dream of — comics that are solely his creation.

He said usually comic books are created in teams with separate artists providing the writing, the pencil work and the colouring.

Art director in Toronto

"When you get so well respected and you're able to do it all, you can create your own whole comic all by yourself," Roy said. "And he's done that, a couple of times."

Early in his career, Cooke worked as a magazine art director in Toronto with Music Express magazine before branching off into the world of comics.

Roy said what sets Cooke apart is his 1950's style approach to his illustrations.

"It brings us back to that wonderful golden age of comics where you had more positivity and it wasn't as dark and dreary," he said. "That's what he brings into his comics which I think appeals to a lot of people."