Spectrum Fantastic Art Live 2 — Pictures and Stories Part 4 — Around the Show

It seems normal that I rarely get the opportunity to walk around the events where I exhibit. Michael Whelan is a mere 10 ft. away, yet there might as well be a moat between us. I eventually manage to slip away from the Flesk booth and study a few of Michael’s originals up close; but only for a minute. A voice calls out to me from the Flesk booth and I run back over to home base to see what’s going on. I start to walk away again, get a few feet and see someone I know and have a nice chat. An hour later I realize I was trying to walk around and didn’t get too far. So then I think that maybe if I get out of eyesight of the booth I’ll be free. I dash off and make a left, right, left, left–I look behind me to make sure the booth is out of sight– I’m lost among the booths. Then I feel the vibration of my phone ringing. It’s the Flesk booth, gotta run back…

Despite the invisible chain of my booth, and my responsibilities, I do enjoy working the booth, seeing familiar faces and meeting people who have never heard of us before.

On Sunday afternoon, I snuck away and marveled at the paintings, walked around and observed the intrinsic nature of three dimensional objects and enjoyed meeting the creators behind the art. And that the people who made these works were there–that was the best part and what makes a show like Spectrum Fantastic Art Live so special.

There’s a big difference between an artist running his and her own booth, and a dealer selling art. The artists want to share, the dealer wants to sell. It’s a different vibe. Now, I know the artists want to sell art too, but I think it is safe to say that artists create works to share with the hope that as many people in the world as possible see their art. Here’s a question for artists. Would you rather have a few million people see and admire your art, or sell a piece for $5000.00? I’m curious.

And another thing I like about shows like SFAL is that when you are buying a piece the money goes straight to the artist. That is very rewarding to me. Given the option, I try and buy direct from artists before dealers.

This year Gregory Manchess and David Palumbo came with a batch of small oils. I loved them! These little paintings are easy to travel back home with, simple to find a spot to hang in a small apartment and are at an affordable price. Thanks for thinking of the little guy, guys. Now if I could have just gotten to Greg’s booth a little faster–say before his “helmets” all sold out–then I’d be a happier publisher.

I probably saw at least half of the show, if not a little more. This year we were busier than the last, and with my crew split between the Spectrum show and Big Wow ComicFest in San Jose, I was shorthanded. But, we made it work and had fun.

I managed to squeeze off a few pictures at our booth and around the show. Fortunately, my friend Jim Vadeboncoeur, Jr. took pictures throughout the event and is willing to share them here. Thanks, Jim! To learn more about Jim, his ImageS magazine and to see over 100 artist biographies online you can visit www.bpib.com.

I’ll start with my pictures. Captions fall under each picture.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-01Here’s a picture of Mark Schultz (on the right) and me. Mark created an original work for me to use as a banner on my Flesk Facebook page and for this 8 ft. banner for shows. Mark was one of the original artists to take a chance on me when I first started Flesk Publications (along with James Bama, Gary Gianni, Steve Rude and William Stout), which I am always grateful for.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-02Jean-Baptiste Monge, at his booth, with Paul Bonner who is the second individual from the left. It looks like there is a book that Jean-Baptiste had available that I missed. I’ll have to pick it up next time. Paul had a new sketchbook which you can pick up from Stuart Ng Books.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-03Justin Sweet was painting at his booth during the last few hours of the show on Sunday. Even after the show ended, as we were breaking down our booth and taking our boxes to the truck I could see Justin still working on the piece. He looked inspired and focused. I later imagined the Liberty crew pushing him out the door on a hand truck–still at work.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-04Jon Foster at his booth. I was fortunate to get to hang out with Jon a few times and get to know him a little. His persona is as warm, varied and enjoyable, as are his paintings.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-06The Fenners’ arranged for the recognition of past Grand Master recipients along one wall of the show. Featured artists had a banner, with a quote, and an original painting on display. Here’s the display for my friend, Jim Bama, with an original Doc Savage painting. Jim, at 87, is still spry and doing great.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-07Brom was at our booth all day on Saturday. We had an advance copy of The Art of Brom on display. I could relate to the people who, with a smile, said they didn’t want to look at the preview so that they could still be surprised when the book arrived with them next month. A big thanks to Brom for coming out to the show for the day.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-05Justin Sweet still focused.

Now we get to the pictures taken by Jim Vadeboncoeur, Jr.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-08This is a picture of our Flesk booth a few hours before the show opened on Friday. Craig Elliott, Iain McCaig and Mark Schultz sat on this long side, with Brom in front of his banner.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-09Here’s a pulled back view of the Flesk booth during set up. The large white peg board area was later filled with Gary Gianni original paintings. Gary, Terryl Whitlatch, Peter de Seve and Bill Carmam sat along this side.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-10 The Baby Tattoo booth. Ragnar, Coop, Gris Grimly, Brian Kesinger, Marina Bychkova and Michael Hussar all took residence here. As did the Baby Tattoo mascot. I’m wishing Bob Self a speedy recovery and that he is doing well.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-11The Dan Dos Santos booth front view. This was one of my favorite stops at the show.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-12 The Dan Dos Santos booth side view. It’s safe to say that I have an original Santos painting on my wish list.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-13Back to the Flesk booth, this time a view as you walk into the show, with Gary Gianni’s paintings hung and on display.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-14The legendary Michael Whelan, and SFAL2 special guest. Michael tells tales as well as he paints.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-15Gary Gianni at the Flesk booth. Gary is one of the most photogenic persons that I know. I don’t know if it’s possible to get a bad picture of him.|

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-16The Rich Klink booth. Here you could find lots of interesting “things.” The hula girl skeletons are something we can all use.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-17This is sweet little Papa Boogedy at the Thomas Kuebler booth. The Krampus bust by Thomas is also stunning.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-18A recent original painting by Gregory Manchess. It was on display at his booth. Greg is as modern as he is traditional, if that makes any sense?

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-19Anthony Kosar had a few friends to welcome you to his booth.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-20Someone, please let me know who this is? Answer: Sugar Fueled – The Art of Michael Banks!

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-21The Drew Baker booth.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-22Mark Wheatley had a terrific looking booth set up. Mark has been very helpful to me in the past It was great to see him again.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-23The entrance to Spectrum Fantastic Art Live! Welcome!

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-24Charles Vess let me know this is Renae Taylor’s booth. This dress is exquisitely made.

Flesk-SFAL2-Booths-25An original work by Virginie Ropars. This is one of my favorite pieces that I viewed at the show.

Thanks to everyone who stopped by our booth and to those who supported the show and artists!



John Fleskes
Flesk Publications
text copyright © 2013 John Fleskes. Pictures copyright © 2013 John Fleskes, Flesk Publications and Jim Vadeboncoeur, Jr.

12 Replies to “Spectrum Fantastic Art Live 2 — Pictures and Stories Part 4 — Around the Show”

  1. The booth near the bottom (with the dressed fairy with wings) is Renae Taylor’s a lovey artist and costume fabricator. We drove out together from Virginia.

  2. Hello, the booth shown in the picture below Anthony Kosar’s picture is Sugar Fueled – The Art of Michael Banks. 🙂

  3. Hello, The booth shown below the picture of Anthony Kosar’s picture is the booth of Sugar Fueled – The Art of Michael Banks. 🙂

  4. Jean-Baptiste’s book is wonderfully put together, and it is a must have for any bookshelf (now anxiously awaiting my Brom book to put next to it. :D). Jean was kind enough to draw an exquisite head study of a man and his pipe in mine. 🙂

  5. Great to see some pics of the booths when no one was around…although the pics also gave me a few head slap moments of realization that there really were booths I completely missed or didn’t get back to as planned despite being there every minute the show was open plus early on Friday!

    1. Carl,
      The same thing happens to me at just about every show where I attend.

  6. Thank you John ! it was great meeting you and being able to talk with you at SFAL ! 🙂 Best~

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