1. Please tell us a little about yourself.
I am a 41 year-old, Chicago-based collector. I hated reading in school as a child and my mother, out of desperation, let me read comics as a means of getting me to at least read something. Ironically, as an adult, I would be considered a voracious reader - an end result the exact opposite of what most parents fear when they think about letting their kids read comics. Anyway, reading and collecting comics led to later focuses on signed and limited hardcovers and eventually original art. These days I still read a broad cross section of comics and collect the art from the series and artists I enjoy the most. My collecting is aided greatly by a wife that is enormously supportive of the hobby and two young daughters who enjoy having original comic art displayed in their rooms.
2. Which piece in your gallery is your favorite?
Like every other collector, this is a very difficult question to answer. I am very passionate about every piece in my collection. I collect original art from the stories that I enjoy the most and/or from the artists that contributed to their creation. Given the breadth and depth in graphic storytelling these days, my collection reflects a wide range of artists. Having said all of that, if I had to pick one, my cover to the third issue of Elektra: Assassin would have to rank as my favorite. Bill Sienkiewicz's work is just so unique - and to own a cover from this seminal piece of work just thrills me every time I look at it.
3. How long have you been collecting comic art and what prompted you to start?
My first piece of comic related art is the two-piece Batman/Grendel commission done for a comic shop owner I used to know in college. In 1988, I traded him a few extra Sandman issues I had for the piece - probably a $100 trade at the time. I felt like I was doing something completely insane, but just loved the art and was a huge fan of so much of Wagner's work. That sparked a curiosity and interest in whether original art was available from other stories I was reading and enjoying at the time, namely Sandman and Cerebus. That led to my first two original art acquisitions - my Kelley Jones Sandman page and my Dave Sim Cerebus page. I miss the days of what those pages cost at the time - as I'm sure everyone else does!
4. How do you display/store your collection at home?
A good portion of my collection is framed and fills a home office. A small portion of framed work is also displayed in other parts of my home. The remainder, and majority, is stored in Itoyas.
5. What are your top five most wanted original pages or commissions?
A cover or interior splash page from Barry Windsor-Smith's Weapon X.
A cover or interior splash page from Todd McFarlane's Spider-Man run.
Something from Scott McCloud's work on Zot - preferably a cover.
A Frank Cho commission or interior splash from his current Avengers work.
A Frank Miller interior page from either Daredevil or Ronin... actually, this is a wish-list, so I want both!
View Chris K.'s Gallery