Spectrum 25 Awards Ceremony Stories and Pictures

Arnie Fenner, John Fleskes, and Kathy Chu backstage while preparing for the Spectrum Awards Ceremony.

Hi everyone!

We have a special treat. This is written by Kathy and John and shares stories and pictures from the Spectrum 25 awards ceremony. The pictures are at the end of the post for those who may not want to read the whole thing.

The Spectrum 25 awards ceremony was held at the historic Brookledge Theater in Los Angeles, California on Saturday, May 5th. This special venue, owned by LA’s legendary private club for professional magicians, The Magic Castle, made this ceremony exceptionally unique  for Spectrum’s 25th anniversary.

Since we were not hosting Spectrum Fantastic Art Live this year in Kansas City, we took this as an opportunity to hold the awards ceremony in Southern California for the first time. Since it was the 25th anniversary of Spectrum Fantastic Art, we wanted it to be something special. With the help of Bob Self, we were able to get in contact with Erika Larson, who manages and takes care of the Brookledge theatre. Because this venue was so exclusive and was an invite only theatre, we met with Erika several months in advance to see if we could hold our ceremony there. After spending some time taking a tour of the space we instantly fell in love with it. After sharing more about Spectrum and the importance of its community, Erika was gracious in her willingness to let us use the theatre for our ceremony. We are so grateful she did, as it made this year’s ceremony an event to remember.

Every year, the ceremony takes an extensive amount of time to plan, and this year was no different. We normally start planning about a month in advance. The first thing we work on is finding an artist be a speaker for each category. We try to find artists from each specific category because we ask them to do a small introduction that relates to the topic before announcing the award recipient. Some people are excited to have an opportunity to speak and be a part of the ceremony, others who may have no or limited public speaking experience bravely take on the responsibility. We make ourselves available to bounce ideas off of and to help mold their speech when asked. We were lucky this year and found a wide variety of speakers, even pulling in a few shy artists who opened up and did wonderfully once on stage.

During the time we look for speakers, we also start contacting all the award nominees to see who would be available to join us for the evening. We also sent out a newsletter and put out posts on our social media accounts letting people know to contact us if they wanted to attend the event. Because of the intimacy of this year’s venue we wanted to make sure nominees, presenters and those who were included in Spectrum 25 could be there. Due to limited seating, we had to create a wait list for everyone else who reached out. We were grateful to squeeze in all of the nominees, presenters and their guests.

The next thing we did, was reach out to see if we could find people in the L.A. area who could help us run the projector and help take pictures at the event. We were lucky and found a San Jose State University alumni, Justin Vu, and professional photographer, Mark Berry, to work the event.

The next step was making sure we had everything we needed for the ceremony. That included creating the background graphics and videos for the ceremony. We also had to make all the award name cards (including the phonetic spelling for each award recipient) and all the envelopes. These are all made specially for each year’s ceremony. We also created a special 25th anniversary award ceremony print to hand out to guests. We also wanted to make sure we brought our Spectrum office copies to get them signed by the artists who were in the books. We keep one copy of each book (Spectrum 21-24) for display in our office, we take these to all the Spectrum events we attend to have them signed by the artists who attend. Since we were driving down to L.A. from Santa Cruz, we also decided to load up John’s truck with previous Spectrum books to hand out to the guests as well. Everyone who attended received a free copy of Spectrum as a special gift.

We drove down a day before the event so we could start setting up and have enough time to be ready for the ceremony. On the way, we picked up snacks and refreshments for the ceremony. We arrived in L.A. midday on Friday and picked up the awards from William Stouts house. We had them shipped there as it was easier and safer than shipping them to Santa Cruz and driving them down. We then drove straight to the theatre to start prepping for the ceremony itself. We were able to drop everything off for the show and get the awards set up.

The day of the ceremony was definitely a hectic one. Due to some technical difficulties, we were unable to use the projector provided by the theatre and ended up needing to find something to show all the background art and graphics needed for the ceremony. With the help of John’s smartphone, we were able to narrow down some options and were in and out of Best Buy within 15 minutes with a brand new large screen TV. Because of the different format, we had to figure out how to project the background videos we had created without showing any of the extra video details and be able to time all the videos to each speaker and award winner. Lucky for us, Justin Vu showed up right on time and was able to help us get the computer and TV set up properly. Colin and Kristine Poole were also miracle workers and showed up early to help us set up the snack and refreshment table. We also had all the presenters arrive a little early so they could do a run through and practice their introductions.

After a quick change out of our street clothes and into our formal outfits, finally, we were ready.

The doors opened at 6:30pm and the guests started to arrive. Because of all our pre-planning the ceremony ran smoothly. We are so grateful to everyone who helped us run the event because without them, we would not have had such a successful evening. All the guests were happy and everyone had a wonderful time. For us, this is what makes the months of pre-planning worth it. To be able to create a gathering where the Spectrum community can get together and celebrate is not only meaningful, it helps to encourage others. All the award recipients had an emotional response and made sincere and expressive acceptance speeches. Everyone who attended left with a want to do more to create and inspire others to do the same. This is why Spectrum exists and why we find the awards ceremony to be so important to have and to share.

Below are pictures from the event, thank you to everyone who joined us for the evening and we hope to see everyone at next year’s event!

The Spectrum 25 Awards set out before the ceremony

From left to right: John Fleskes (Spectrum director), Kathy Chu (Flesk VP), and master of ceremonies for the evening, Bob Self (publisher of Baby Tattoo Books.)

Spectrum regular and one of the nicest guys you can meet at a party, Luc Desmarchelier.

John and Kathy talking with Te Hu prior to the ceremony starting. Te ran over his opening talk with us before the show began.

Our magician guest who performed during the event talking with William Stout (left).

Bob Self, Joel Beren and Olivia De Berardinis graced us with their appearance.

Bob Self, Master of Ceremonies, energetically welcoming the guests.

Colin and Kristine Poole, both involved with Spectrum for many years, introducing the Rising Star Award, which they created and announce each year to highlight an outstanding newcomer to the field.

Miranda Meeks graciously accepting the Rising Star Award. She had arrived earlier that day after flying in from Utah. Until an hour before the show we were unsure if she would make it, and we were thrilled when she arrived.

Te Hu, introducing the Advertising Category. This was his first time on the Spectrum stage and he was energetic and charmed everyone.

Laurel Blechman surprised and happily accepting accepting the Advertising Silver Award. Laurel gave an emotional acceptance speech while dedicating the award to Glen Orbik.

Tim O’Brien, the president of the Society of Illustrators, introducing the Book Category.

Victo Ngai, most nominated in a single year and one of the best of her generation, accepting the Gold Award for the Book category.

William Stout, introducing the significance of the Comic category and how much it has changed throughout the years.

Craig Elliott gave a memorable introduction to the Concept Art category.

Anthony Francisco, Marvel Studios senior visual development artist passionately accepting the Silver Award for the Concept Art category.

Wangjie Li was very honored to accept the Gold Award for the Concept Art category.

Arnie Fenner presenting the Memorial to honor artists who passed away in 2017.

Brynn Metheney, who has been in Spectrum many times and has attended many past Spectrum events, introducing the Dimensional category.

Jessica Dalva, gracefully accepting the Silver Award for the Dimensional category.

Paul Sullivan, introducing the Editorial category with an extremely well-researched and educational talk.

Tim O’Brien, who was very surprised, accepting the Silver Award in the Editorial category.

Edward Kinsella III gave a heartfelt speech when receiving the Gold Award in the Editorial category.

Karla Ortiz excitedly introducing the Institutional Category shared a story of her experience while being on the Spectrum 25 jury.

Alina Chau, introducing the Unpublished category and the opportunity it presents to artists who challenge themselves to work outside of conventional projects when submitting to Spectrum.

Michael MacRae, who was stunned to find out he won an award, receiving the Silver Award in the Unpublished category

Andrew Hem, gave a moving acceptance speech for the Gold Award for the Unpublished category.

Iain McCaig, exuberantly introducing Claire Wendling as the Spectrum 2018 Grand Master and how she influences others.

John Fleskes making his closing remarks for the ceremony, thanking everyone who was involved and congratulating the award recipients.

A group picture of all the attending award winners.

A group picture during he after party with many of the presenters, award winners and nominees.

View from the stage during the Spectrum Awards Ceremony.

Enjoying the after party that went into the late hours of the evening.

Karla Ortiz and Iain McCaig have are contagious with their enthusiasm wherever they go.

Tooba Rezaei, Craig Elliott, Colin and Kristine Poole.

Wangjie Le and Anthony Francesco and guests during the after party.

Thank you all for reading. We look forward to next year’s awards ceremony!

All our best,

Kathy and John

Text and photos © 2018 John Fleskes. Photos by Mark Berry. Videos © 2018 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2018 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

The Spectrum 26 Call for Entries opens on October 15th!

Greetings!

The Spectrum 26 Call for Entries opens on October 15th! Join our mailing list to receive a poster.

Over the next two weeks we will be sharing Spectrum news daily on our Facebook and Instagram accounts. We will reveal who the Spectrum 26 jury is and the artist who made the latest call for entries poster. We will share videos that include a Spectrum 25 book flip through and interviews with the jury. The Spectrum 25 artist copies will arrive at our warehouse in the middle of October. More news will be coming about Spectrum Fantastic Art Live and the Spectrum 26 award ceremony that is happening next spring.

There are a few ways to stay updated. You can follow us on social media and join our email newsletter. Additionally, you can provide us with your mailing address and we will mail you a complimentary Spectrum Call for Entries poster (U.S. addresses only). If you are already on our list, but have moved, you can use this link to provide us with your most current address.
Here’s the link to sign up:

http://spectrumfantasticart.com/newsletter.php

We look forward to Spectrum 25 hitting the stores this fall. We hope you will enjoy it!

Thank you all for your support of Spectrum and Flesk!

All our best,

John and Kathy

Text and photos copyright © 2018 John Fleskes. Videos © 2018 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2018 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

Spectrum 25 Awards Recipients!

The Spectrum 25 awards. Backstage, moments before the ceremony began. Designed by J. Anthony Kosar, and made by him and the Kosart Effects team.

For 25 years Spectrum: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art has been celebrating imaginative works by creators from around the world. During a ceremony in Los Angeles, California on Saturday, May 5, 2018, the celebration continued with the presentation of Gold and Silver Awards for exemplary art in eight categories: Advertising, Book, Comics, Concept Art, Dimensional, Editorial, Institutional, and Unpublished. The ceremony was held in the historic Brookledge Theater and presided over by Spectrum’s Director and publisher, John Fleskes. Presenters included such luminaries of the art community as Alina Chau, Craig Elliott, Te Hu, Tim O’Brien, Iain McCaig, Brynn Metheney, Karla Ortiz, Colin and Kristine Poole, William Stout, Paul Sullivan. Spectrum co-founder Arnie Fenner introduced a memorial video devoted to the creatives who had passed away in the previous year. Bob Self served as the master of ceremonies during the evening.

Congratulations to all of the awards recipients!

Spectrum 2018 Grand Master
Claire Wendling

Spectrum 2018 Rising Star
Miranda Meeks

Advertising

Gold Award
Greg Ruth
Moonrise

Silver Award
Laurel Blechman
ComicBase 2018

Book

Gold Award
Victo Ngai
Serving Fish

Silver Award
Petar Meseldžija
The Old Man and the Forest

Comic

Gold Award
Alex Alice
Castle in the Stars book 2 pages 60-61

Silver Award
Gary Gianni
Hellboy: Into the Silent Sea page 11

Concept Art

Gold Award
Wangjie Li
Battlefield Scene

Silver Award
Anthony Francisco
Okoye and Nakia the Dora Milaje

Dimensional

Gold Award
Forest Rogers
Octopoid Descending

Silver Award
Jessica Dalva
I’ll Need Entire Cities to Replace You

Editorial

Gold Award
Edward Kinsella III
My Whereabouts

Silver Award
Tim O’Brien
“Nothing to See Here”

Institutional

Gold Award
Seb McKinnon
Stasis

Silver Award
Piotr Jabłoński
Moaning Wall

Unpublished 

Gold Award
Andrew Hem
Whirlpool

Silver Award
Michael MacRae
Tip of the Spear

Congratulations again to all of the recipients!

John

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Spectrum 25 Awards Ceremony at the Brookledge Theater, May 5, 2018!

 

The awards for Spectrum 25 are designed by J. Anthony Kosar and made by Kosart Studios. The awards for Spectrum 24 are shown here.

As part of its 25th Anniversary celebration, the awards for Spectrum 25 will be presented at a gala ceremony at the historic Brookledge Theater in Los Angeles, California on Saturday, May 5th. Both exclusive and intimate, the Brookledge is a unique venue operated by the owners of LA’s legendary private club for professional magicians, The Magic Castle.

Because the Brookledge’s size is intimate this is an invitation-only event; seating for the ceremony is strictly limited to 70 and is completely booked. The doors will open at 6:30pm for those who are on the reservation list; the ceremony will begin promptly at 8:00pm.

The award finalists for Spectrum 25 were selected by a blue-ribbon jury consisting of Terry Dodson, Tyler Jacobson, Tran Nguyen, Karla Ortiz, and Charles S. Pyle. During the ceremony the 2018 Rising Star recipient, the silver and gold winners for Spectrum’s eight categories, and this year’s Grand Master Award honoree will all be announced.

The evening schedule will include the following esteemed speakers and presenters:

Master of Ceremonies—Bob Self
Rising Star Award—Colin and Kristine Poole
Advertising Category—Te Hu
Book Category—Tim O’Brien
Comic Category—William Stout
Concept Art Category—Craig Elliott
Memorial—Arnie Fenner
Dimensional Category—Brynn Metheney
Editorial Category—Paul Sullivan
Institutional Category—Karla Ortiz
Unpublished Category—Alina Chau
Grand Master Award—Iain McCaig
Spectrum Appreciation—John Fleskes and Arnie Fenner

For those attending the event, the Brookledge Theater is located in a residential neighborhood at 929 S. Longwood Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90019. Please check in at the left side entrance of the property to be escorted to the theater. Street parking is limited. Uber, Lyft, or carpooling is encouraged.

The nominated works, along with the complete selections of the jury, will be featured in Spectrum 25: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art published by Flesk Publications in the fall of 2018.

Flesk Publications is distributed to the trade by Publishers Group West. You can learn more about Spectrum at the official website: spectrumfantasticart.com

We look forward to seeing everyone on this magical evening!

Spectrum 25 Awards Nominations

The jury for Spectrum 25: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art has nominated the top five artworks in eight categories for consideration for either a silver and gold award. Judges Terry Dodson, Tyler Jacobson, Tran Nguyen, Karla Ortiz and Chuck Pyle debated the merits of hundreds of pieces of art before finalizing this list on Saturday, February 24, 2018 at the Flesk Publications offices in Santa Cruz, California.

Established in 1993 by Cathy and Arnie Fenner, the first Spectrum annual appeared in 1994 from Underwood Books; for a quarter of a century it has attracted participants from around the world and has set the standards for excellence in fantasy and science fiction art. John Fleskes became the Director and Publisher of Spectrum in 2014 with volume 21.

The recipients will be announced at the Spectrum 25 Awards Ceremony that will be held at the historic Brookledge Theater in Los Angeles, CA on Saturday, May 5, 2018. The 2018 Spectrum Grand Master Award honoree will also be announced during the ceremony.

For more information about Spectrum visit: http://www.spectrumfantasticart.com

Congratulations to all of the artists who have been nominated!

ADVERTISING CATEGORY

Laurel Blechman
ComicBase 2018

Brom
The Night Mare

Victo Ngai
Mixc World Launch

Greg Ruth
Moonrise

Yuko Shimizu
SK-II Art of Travel packaging project: CHINA

BOOK CATEGORY

Tommy Arnold
Red Rising

 

Wesley Burt
A Girl & Her Friends

Gregory Manchess
Above the Timberline, page 118–Heading Home

Petar Meseldzija
The Old Man and the Forest

Victo Ngai
Serving Fish

COMIC CATEGORY

Alex Alice
Castle in the Stars, Book 2, pages 60-61

Xaviere Daumarie
Ugly Cinderwench and the Very Angry Ghost, page 3

Gary Gianni
Hellboy: Into the Silent Sea, page 11

Erik Gist
Kratos

Paolo Rivera
Shirtless Bear Fighter #4, variant cover

CONCEPT ART CATEGORY

Wesley Burt
Transformers 5 Autobot Design – ‘Canopy’

Anthony Francisco
Okoye and Nakia the Dora Milaje

Te Hu
Ganesh Gangis

Nick Keller
Geisha Interior (Ghost in the Shell)

Wangjie Li
Battlefield Scene

DIMENSIONAL CATEGORY

Akihito
Statue of Peace

Jessica Dalva
I’ll Need Entire Cities to Replace You

Patrick Masson
Life and Death

DopePope
Cthulhu 22 inch tall statue

Forest Rogers
Octopoid Descending

EDITORIAL CATEGORY

Edward Kinsella III
My Whereabouts

Yoann Lossel
The Rise

Victo Ngai
Sports Stopwatch

Tim O’Brien
Nothing to See Here

Yuko Shimizu
Unconventional Way

INSTITUTIONAL CATEGORY

Piotr Jabłoński
Moaning Wall

Seb McKinnon
Stasis

Victo Ngai
Three Color Trilogy: Blue

Chris Rahn
Vraska, Relic Seeker

Tianhua X
Dinosaur Hunter

UNPUBLISHED CATEGORY

Scott Bakal
Dim Stars: Firing Back

Andrew Hem
Whirlpool

Howard Lyon
Ella Standing Between the Earth and Sky

Michael MacRae
Tip of the Spear

Iain McCaig
Star Wars Triptych

Congratulations again to all of the Spectrum 25 nominations!

Enjoy,

John

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Text and photos copyright © 2018 John Fleskes. Videos © 2018 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2018 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

Spectrum 24 Awards Recipients!

Spectrum 24 cover by Iain McCaig

For 24 years Spectrum: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art has been celebrating imaginative works by creators from around the world. During a ceremony in Kansas City, Missouri Saturday night, April 22nd, the celebration continued with the presentation of Gold and Silver Awards for exemplary art from the previous year in eight categories: Advertising, Book, Comics, Concept Art, Dimensional, Editorial, Institutional, and Unpublished. The ceremony was held in the historic Folly Theater and presided over by Spectrum’s Director and publisher, John Fleskes. Presenters included such luminaries of the art community as J.A.W. Cooper, John English, James Gurney, Lauren Panepinto, John Picacio, Dan dos Santos, Bob Self, and Richard & Wendy Pini, Colin & Kristine Poole, George Pratt, Terryl Whitlatch. Spectrum co-founders Cathy and Arnie Fenner introduced a memorial video devoted to the creatives who had passed away in the previous year. Maeret Lemons served as the MC during the ceremony. Voler: Thieves of Flight, Kansas City’s Premier Aerial Academy and Aerial Performance Collective, performed during the evening.

The 5 finalists and award-recipients in each category were selected by a blue-ribbon jury consisting of Christian Alzmann [artist], Laurie Lee Brom [artist], Mark Newman[sculptor/artist], Victo Ngai [artist, instructor], and John Picacio [artist] from over 5000 artworks submitted to the twenty-fourth annual competition. Also presented at the ceremony were the Rising Star Award, created and presented by sculptors Kristine and Colin Poole and intended to encourage a young artist, and the Spectrum Grand Master Award which honors the career accomplishments of a living artist. This year’s Grand Master recipient was legendary comics creator Bill Sienkiewicz, who was present to accept his award and say a few words to the audience.

The award-winning art will appear with nearly 500 other pieces selected by the judges in the Spectrum 24 book, which will be published by Flesk Publications in November.

Spectrum 24 Awards Recipients

2017 GRAND MASTER HONOREE
Bill Sienkiewicz

ADVERTISING

Silver Award
Greg Ruth / “Daredevil”

Gold Award
Bayard Wu / “Hunting”

Other nominees:
Kellan Jett / “Hell”
Edward Kinsella III / “Carnival of Souls”
Bill Mayer / “Savages”

BOOK

Silver Award
Edward Kinsella III / “Danneee”

Gold Award
Brom / “Lamia”

Other nominees:
Richard Anderson / “Red Tide”
Tommy Arnold / “On the Wheel”
Goni Montes / “Tamiel”

COMIC

Silver Award
Dave McKean / “Black Dog: The Dreams of Paul Nash”

Gold Award
Jeremy Wilson / “Chimera Brigade #5”

Other nominees:
Arthur Adams / “Guardians of the Galaxy #19 (cover)”
Nic Klein / “Drifter #13, pages 8 and 9”
David Palumbo / “Swallowed Whole”

CONCEPT ART

Silver Award
Iain McCaig / “King Ape Minion”

Gold Award
Sean Murray / “Court of the Dead: Voxxingard”

Other nominees:
Te Hu / “Secret of Seda”
Tyler Jacobson / “Hill Giant Queen”
Ronan Le Fur / “Fortress Africa”

DIMENSIONAL

Silver Award
Akihito / “Nephila”

Gold Award
Jesse Thompson / “Dress-Up Frog Legs”

Other nominees:
Amilcar Fong / “Oglavaeil The Executioner”
Virginie Ropars / “Yevabog”
Dug Stanat / “The Corruption of Father O’Malley”

EDITORIAL

Silver Award
Galen Dara / “Seven Salt Tears”

Gold Award
Tim O’Brien / Beyonce “Lemonade”

Other nominees:
Clint Cearley / “Broken Concentration ”
Tran Nguyen / “La Beaute Sans Vertu”
Armando Veve / “War Music”

INSTITUTIONAL

Silver Award
Ed Binkley / “William Finds Some Flowers and a Giant”

Gold Award
Bill Carman / “Ms. Hatter and a Smile”

Other nominees:
Wesley Burt / “Accursed Witch”
Travis Louie / “Mojo Jojo Circa 1897”
Stephan Martiniere / “Tie Fighter Down”

UNPUBLISHED

Silver Award
Jeffrey Alan Love / “Orange Skies”

Gold Award
Karla Ortiz / “The Death I Bring”

Other nominees:
J.A.W. Cooper / “Stealth”
Diego Fernandez / “375”
Greg Ruth / “Lagoon”

RISING STAR AWARD

Alessandra Pisano

2016 GRAND MASTER HONOREE

Bill Sienkiewicz

Enjoy,

John

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Text and photos copyright © 2016 John Fleskes. Artwork © 2016 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

The Spectrum Rising Star Award!

Spectrum Fantastic Art is proud to announce the continuation of the Rising Star Award during the Spectrum 24 Awards Ceremony. This award will recognize and acknowledge an emerging artist who demonstrates exceptional abilities and dedication in the fantastic art arena.

The Rising Star Award intends to encourage all newcomers to stay focused on their work and persevere through the challenges they will face in building a career in the creative arts.

The nominees for the Rising Star Award will be chosen at SFAL on April 21, 2017 by Colin and Kristine Poole, John Fleskes, and Arnie and Cathy Fenner. Furthermore, any representative selected by the Fenners and John Fleskes may also participate in the nomination selection. All artists exhibiting at Spectrum Fantastic Art Live, and have been working professionally for approximately five years or less, and any artist who demonstrate exceptional imagination, skill and dedication to their art will be considered. From this group of nominees, the final award winner will be selected by Colin and Kristine Poole and announced at the Spectrum 24 Awards ceremony at the Folly Theater in Kansas City, Missouri on April 22. This is a remarkable opportunity for emerging artists to have their work presented to the larger community and to make valuable connections and contacts.

The Spectrum 24 Rising Star Recipient will receive the Rising Star bronze award created by Colin and Kristine Poole, an artist feature in Spectrum 24 and a complimentary artist table provided for the next SFAL event. This will be an annual award.

Good luck everyone!

John

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Text and photos copyright © 2017 John Fleskes. Videos © 2017 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2017 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.