Hi, my name is Paul and I am an art addict.
I have not indulged for 16 days. I was doing well until San Diego Comic Con. ‘Big Red’ called to me, a Hellboy sketch by Mike Mignola. I needed a fix so bad, and before I knew it, I was walking away with it.
It took me a long time to admit I had a problem. I tried to find pleasure in my own attempts but they were a poor substitute to the artistry I saw all around me. Like many, I started off indulging in safer waters. First it was the art books, then I started getting art prints—the fancy French giclée ones. They just sounded better. But after a while it was not enough. I needed to get closer to the source—own an original—touched by the creator.
I would hang out online, looking for an easy eBay score, but it was a shallow experience. What I craved was the artist and – by extension – the art. Conventions were quickly becoming my MO. I would cruise by the alleys (there was nothing better than buying an exquisite drawing from an artist you just shared a drink with the night before), swapping stories of amazing trips you had taken to imaginary lands, whether Middle-Earth with Donato Giancola, the Dreamlands with Allan Williams, Travis Lewis and Nick Keller. Walking into the depths of the Inferno with Wayne Barlowe or exploring Galaxies far away with Iain McCaig…I have never felt so happy and inspired. All I wanted to do was draw and get lost in my own fantasy worlds.
For a while, sketches were enough. But the craving got stronger. The intoxicating whiff of paint fumes brought me to Justin Sweet and Vance Kovac’s booth. And it got worse when I crossed opposite—an alluring voice over my shoulder—Jon Foster asking me if I saw something I liked. He pimped me a stunning Timothy Hunter. It was so beautiful, how could I resist?
I needed more... The mini-hats of Greg Manchess, the Dave Palumbo astronauts… Frank Victoria’s WW1 Dwarves… Now I am even commissioning pieces I have not seen yet. When will it ever end? Do I really want it to end?
My name is Paul, I am an art addict. I am 16 days clean but gearing up for a new hit. The nail is in my hand, the wall space is clear and my first Christian Pearce sketch digital combo is all but ready to get held high.