Is 2015 really over already? This year has gone by far too quickly, though perhaps it just seems that way because it was such a busy year. It kicked off with the second annual Curious Gallery here in Portland, Oregon. Curated by local artist and author Lupa, this event is “a festival of the wunderkammer revival” and features an art show, live demonstrations, and hands-on workshops about a range of subjects from taxidermy to cryptozoology and beyond. Curious Gallery 2016 will be held on January 9 – 10, and though I won’t be able to show at it this time I do plan to attend.
This was also my first year attending PantheaCon, which incidentally will be my very first event of 2016! PantheaCon 2015 was the 22nd annual conference of its kind, boasting attendance of 3000+ pagans and polytheists from all over the world. I’ll be back in San Jose, California on February 12 – 15, in the vendor’s room with my usual array of art plus T-shirts. Hope to see you there!
In April I was invited to Norwescon 38—the Pacific Northwest’s premiere sci-fi and fantasy convention—as a guest artist. This year’s theme was Distant Horizons, Epic Adventures, and the author guest of honor was none other than the man himself, George R. R. Martin. In addition to participating in the art show, I was invited to be a panelist and share my experiences as a printmaker, a working artist, and an artist with disabilities. I’m pleased to have been invited back this year and look forward to Norwescon 39, check your schedule for my panels and be sure to visit the art show.
April and May brought CthulhuCon PDX and HPLFF San Pedro. These two Lovecraft-oriented events are among my favorites, and feature a selection of short and feature-length films, live readings of Lovecraft-inspired fiction, tabletop gaming demos, and no shortage of art. At both, I was once again a competitor in the Pickman’s Apprentice Live Drawing competition, racing against several other artists to beat the clock and complete an original image based on a prompt issued by the audience. I’m thrilled to say I won at HPLFF San Pedro.
Omens & Portents opened in July at Seattle’s Gargoyle Statuary, and featured a selection of old and new work inspired by Hermetic magic, illuminated art, and alchemy. My work can be found at Gargoyle year-round, so if you’re in the Seattle area I encourage you to stop by and check it out, along with the rest of their huge selection of art.
Then in August, I flew to Providence, Rhode Island for NecronomiCon. Since this was Lovecraft’s 125th birthday and the birth of weird fiction, this year’s conference was a Lovecraft International Homecoming. Some of my prints were in the Ars Necronomica showcase, alongside the work of artists including Skinner, Nick Gucker, Lee Moyer, Paul Komoda, and others. I also assisted with vending at the Arkham Bazaar booth, and signed an awful lot of books. NecronomiCon is an amazing event, and I’m already excited for the next one in 2017.
The 7th annual Esoteric Book Conference followed in September, and once again I enjoyed the privilege of hosting the art show. This year’s featured artists included Raven Ebner, Valerie Herron, Anne O’Neill, Travis Lawrence, Michael Cowell, and Troy Chambers. The lectures were excellent and I particularly loved Oksana Marafioti’s “Magical Realism in Russia: How Ancestry Worship, Shamanism and Christianity Shaped the Nation.” I also somehow managed to make it home without buying too many books.
HPLFF touched down in Portland in October at the historic Hollywood Theatre. This year began with
a 1920s-themed gala celebration with music, dancing, burlesque, and a screening of The Call of Cthulhu. I returned as a guest artist along with Cody Goodfellow, Leeman Kessler, Molly Tanzer, Jeff Burk, and others, and in addition to vending I helped put together Kickstarter reward bags. This involved hand-numbering the limited edition of 250 Miskatonic Expedition log books and creating a Kickstarter reward print, Signum Advenit. I also sat on the Medium of Madness panel, where we discussed artistic media and how they mesh with Lovecraftian influences.
As action-packed as this year has been, there’s plenty more coming in 2016. I can’t say much at the moment, but I’m currently working on a large-scale secret project. While I’ll be reducing the number of shows I attend in 2016, I’ll also be upping the number of woodcuts I’m creating. How much am I upping it? I officially released 7 new print editions and made three 90-minute woodcuts in 2015, I’m already working on 8 new woodcuts, and that’s just a fraction of the large project.
In addition to creating new woodcuts, I’m also working on new wood veneer reproductions. Since the response to the cards has been so favorable, I’ll be expanding the wood card series and beginning to offer 8 x 10 reproductions. Also, the SyFy viewers among you should keep your eyes peeled for my work on upcoming episodes of the new series The Magicians, which contacted me earlier in the year for set dressing items. (More on that in a later post.) Finally, I’m in the process of setting up a Patreon that will go live in January. The Patreon will allow me to easily share updates, glimpses into the woodcut process, and offer monthly subscriptions for magnets, cards, and even original prints.
Huge thanks to those of you who’ve continued to show interest in my work by coming to events and exhibiting such enthusiasm for the art of woodcut printmaking. Have a safe and happy New Year, and I’ll catch you all in 2016!