For the past 3 years, Pat and Jeannie Wilshire get together the best artists in the fantasy field for one weekend in November. The annual convention in Altoona, PA draws collectors, students and fans from all over the country. This year, after Matt Stewart and Lars Grant-West put in a good word, I was granted a spot in the show! My table was right next to Bob Eggleton. Across from me was Steve Belledin, who up until Thursday was just my facebook friend. I was in good company in my cozy corner of the hall.
I could go on and on about how great the experience was. The other artists were incredibly welcoming and kind. The students were appreciative. The collectors were passionate and knowledgeable. But I think the weekend can be summed up by all my firsts:
- I did my first portfolio reviews. Strange to finally be on the other end of a review, but I did my best. (below photo by Cynthia Sheppard)
- It was the first time I saw one of my covers in the book store.
- I sold my first painting: At the Queen's Command. It found a good home in Ohio, and it was one less painting to pack up at the end of the weekend.
But the best part of the event was the opportunity to talk shop and hang out with my colleagues. Working in my studio can sometimes feel like a vacuum. Going to Chili's or the Ramada bar with Steve Belledin, Doug Cowan, Scott Brundage, Randy Gallegos, Lars Grant-West, Steve Prescott , Jeremy Jarvis and others was a lot of fun.
Now, it's back to work. I have sketches to do and a website to clean up. Of course, I'm also brainstorming about next year if I get another opportunity to show my stuff!