1. Please tell us a little about yourself.
Well, I have been working for my regional fire service for about 20 years. Funnily enough, that's about how long I have been collecting artwork. No wonder I never seem able to keep all my wages. Collecting artwork at the beginning was mostly either once a year at the UK Comic Art Convention or via artwork catalogs, even Comic Buyers Guide, if you could get it. Of course by then, without fail, the piece you wanted was already gone. As soon as I discovered the Internet and ebay, everything changed, I even started going to overseas shows, my first was San Diego in 2000, I like to think I jumped in at the deep end.
2. What is your favorite piece in your gallery and why?
My favourite piece in my gallery is my Superman pencil piece by Kevin Nowlan. I am a huge fan of Kevin's work and I could not resist the chance to get this piece, a big thanks to Kevin for that. It has everything I could want, the pose just says "Superman" and the pencil work is beautiful to look at. It really is a case of the scan not doing the artwork full justice. I was so inspired by this piece, that it started a new theme in my galleries; for pieces by the artists I think of when I think of certain characters, with a one word title, "Hope" certainly fits it well.
3. How long have you been collecting comic art and what prompted you to start?
I have been collecting artwork since 1988. Due to the lack of decent shows at that time in the UK, I decided to give the UKCAC (UK Comic Art Convention, which began in 2007) a try. I was amazed to see people paying real money for pieces of paper with drawings on them. Typically, as soon as I looked, I was hooked and bought my first page; a Ka-Zar page by Ron Frenz & Armando Gil, which has slipped from my grasp since then.
However, after going back year after year until it finished, I managed to amass a nice little collection of some of my still favourite pieces. I even met a few Artists at the later shows. One time I nearly knocked Alan Moore down a flight of stairs which would have changed a few things in comics.
4. How do you display/store your collection at home?
I have about 40 of my best pieces framed and displayed on my walls. I often rotate the pages that are up as my collecting interest changes. The rest of my pages are in portfolios, which bugs me a bit, as I like to see my artwork and not hide it away.
5. What are your top five most wanted original pages or commissions?
Since I am trying to put issue 1 of the first volume of Ultimates back together, I could say that any of the pages I do not have are in my top five. However, if we are talking grails, then the back cover to an issue of Excalibur (cannot remember the specific issue) by Alan Davis, featuring Kitty Pryde and Lockheed is high on my list. In fact, any page by Alan Davis featuring Captain Britain fighting the Fury would be welcome in my collection. And since I am not greedy, a commission by Chris Sprouse and one by Alan Davis for my Themed gallery would be warmly welcomed into my collection as well.
View Art Shotton's Gallery