Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Voices from Artists Alley: CHRISTOPHER GIBBS

One of the more difficult ways to make your living is by being a commission artist. These are the guys who spend long hours at conventions and shows, doing sketches for people and selling prints both in person and online. Even though it's a tough row to hoe, it's also a way for artists to get their work out into people's hands -- both readers and publishers. Make a name for yourself at conventions with hot artwork, and you might end up landing a bigger gig with someone down the line.

At the recent New England Comic Con, I had a chance to talk with one of these unsung commission artists, Christopher Gibbs, and we briefly discussed some of the challenges of breaking into comics as an artist.

Scott Harris: Thanks for taking the time to talk with us. What can you tell our readers about yourself and your work?

Christopher: My name is Christopher Gibbs. I’ve been an artist struggling in the trenches for a while, so to speak. I’ve been pretty much a commission artist until recently. Most of my stuff for sale right now is sold through serendipityartsales.com. I also sell through ebay, facebook… people find me and buy my stuff.

You mentioned you were mainly a commercial artist until recently. Does that mean you have some projects being published in the near future?

I do, actually. I started doing cards for a company called Monsterwax. I’m also doing cards for Rittenhouse for an upcoming Marvel set. And I have two comics that are in the works at the moment that I can’t really talk details on yet. So, I kind of got real busy in the last two months. But It’s a good busy.

Do you have your own personal website to showcase your artwork?

I do not have a personal website as of yet. Just through facebook and myspace currently, and twitter. And the simple email address Christopher_M_Gibbs@yahoo.com, you can find me anywhere through that.

How did you get started as an artist? Did you study art in school?

I did go to art school ever so briefly, but I kind of realized quickly that I was spending a lot of money to not learn a whole lot, so I moved on from that and went on to school for other things.

I started drawing at a young age. Gave up drawing for about ten years or so and decided that I really wanted to get back into it and kind of devote myself to it full time. Which is what I’ve been doing for the last couple years. Kind of the darker edge of things is where I started out, the horror end, the gothic end. I have been branching out and doing a lot more comic stuff, but it still has my edge to it. I’m bringing a different style into more mainstream comics.

I recently did a pinup/promo piece for [Tyler James’s] CounterTERROR book, which I did the pencils and ink on and he just got back to me with the color work on it yesterday, as a matter of fact. It was a piece that I had done for him a few months back.

Thanks very much for your time, Christopher, and good luck with those upcoming comic projects.

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