This past Friday night Alternate Reality Comics had our first Artist Spotlight reception and it was a GRAND time with a GREAT turnout! The Artist Spotlight section of the store will be mostly feature local artists, but from time to time we'll have visiting comic book artists display their art in this section of the store. We had planned to have this be a part of the store since we moved to our new location a year ago, from an idea that was first introduced to me by my friend, Paul Tompkins (who also takes care of Alternate Reality Comics on Sundays). With the additional artistry of my friend Michelle Irish and Jim McKenzie helping me fine tune this area, the space was all ready for the big show this past Friday!
Michelle recently introduced me to Keri Schroeder and her amazing artistic prowess, so I was very happy to have Keri as one of our two debut artists. Keri Schroeder's art will be on display through the end of September and if you weren't able to make it to the reception, I urge you to come by to see her work in person. Her original pieces on display are for sale and she also has prints on sale at my store which makes for great inexpensive decor for yourself or work fantastically as gifts.
Anyone who has been an enthusiast of the best in alternative comics already knows that Love and Rockets has been a sequential art leader for almost 30 (!!) years now and that Gilbert Hernandez, one half of the creative dynamo that is Los Bros. Hernandez, is a master artist and storyteller! A lot of people don't know that the artistic treasure that is Gilbert Hernandez (and his family) has called Las Vegas home for almost a decade now. And being as I've been a HUGE fan of his since he first came on the scene, I was elated when he agreed to be one of the debut artists of my Artist Spotlight here at Alternate Reality Comics! Several original pages from Gilbert Hernandez' acclaimed Love and Rockets are on display awaiting more adulation from those who appreciate the finest in black and white sequential illustration! Here in this photo is Gilbert's wife, Carol, and their daughter, Natalia (who has several issues of her own mini comic, The Adventures of Crystal Girl).
At our opening reception, Michelle recruited her friend and local musician, Zack Fountain, who plays a variety of instruments under his alias, Rushmore Beekeepers (he also sometimes has band mates) and his tunes delighted the ears of everyone who came out for this event. Zack has been creating music since the 1990s and has about seven albums out (he once recorded a song a week for a year!). Check out http://rushmorebeekeepers.com/ to see and hear for yourself the musicianship, insight, and wit of Zack Fountain and his Rushmore Beekeepers!
One of my very best friends, Harry Fagel. Harry graciously read several of his poems at my opening reception on Friday and I was more than happy to introduce his very dramatic reading style to more people. I know that some people (including myself, once upon a time) have some preconceptions that poetry is often flowery (not that that's a bad thing - grin!) and incomprehensible, but I'm here to tell you that if you are someone who thinks poetry is boring, well you haven't had the pleasure of reading / hearing Harry Fagel's poetry, which can be alternately disturbing (as a lot of it deals with what he experiences having been a police officer for almost twenty years) and humorous. Check out http://www.fagelman.com/.
Here at the Artist Spotlight section of Alternate Reality Comics, we plan to have our featured artists displays up for a month, with the opening of the next artists debuting on the last Friday of every month. I know that there are many great artists here in Las Vegas and people that live here that love art in its myriad forms, so my vision of this part of the store isn't just "limited' to art that is comic related because art in comic books is varied and covers a multitude of themes. I also hope that people who come out for the local artists featured monthly who haven't seen the different things that the comic book medium does, will be awakened to what we already know.
Huge thanks to my friends, Michelle, Paul, and Jim, who helped make this happen and a HUGE thanks to everyone who came out this past Friday and to all of my Ich Liebe Comics! readers who appreciate great art!
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