1. Please tell us a little about yourself.
My origin story begins when I moved from Maryland to Connecticut in 1985 when I was five years old, growing up in the virtual shadow of ESPN. I became obsessed with the idea of working there. Finally in 2006 I achieved my lifelong dream, and I've been with the company for ten years now. I'm an editor for ESPN.com's Live Content team, specializing in the NBA. I've been lucky enough to get to cover five NBA Finals series in person, and 2016 will be my sixth. I live in my childhood home, which I purchased from my parents once they retired, and when I'm not there, my collection is carefully guarded (or mostly ignored) by my two cats, Felicia and Selina.
2. Which piece in your gallery is your favorite?
It's so hard to pick just one. I have an unhealthy attachment to my framed and mounted Spider-Man: Blue collection, but that's really two pieces and six books, so it's not fair to pick that one. If forced to pick a single stand-alone piece, I'd have to go with my Mary Jane Watson commission from Stephane Roux. I got it at Baltimore Comic Con in 2009, and it was literally the last piece he did that weekend -- he was actually putting the finishing touches on it as they were starting to clear out the convention hall -- and it still holds up beautifully alongside some of the other more expensive pieces I've gotten over the years.
3. How long have you been collecting comic art and what prompted you to start?
I was a latecomer to comics in general and comic art, not getting into the scene until I was in my mid-20s. I quickly fell in love with the idea of owning original artwork. I started mostly by getting published pages (the Spider-Man: Blue set was one of my very first purchases) then branching out into commissions and eventually sketch covers. I never thought back when I got my first piece in 2006 that I'd eventually have a collection of more than 300 pieces.
4. How do you display/store your collection at home?
With a collection as large as mine, it's hard to put everything on display. I have a selection of my Mary Jane commissions (about a dozen of them) framed and displayed on the walls of my main staircase, but the rest of the full-size commissions and the original pages are in portfolios. The sketch covers are a different story. When I moved back into my house, I decided to change up the dining room decor, and found a tutorial online for an inexpensive way of framing comic books, so the entire MJ sketch cover set is basically lining the walls of that room.
5. What are your top five most wanted original pages or commissions?
I've been lucky enough to get sketches or commissions from most of the artists I've wanted throughout the years, but I definitely still have a "most wanted" list. My top 5 (in no particular order):
J. Scott Campbell: I was actually on his "at home" commission list back when he maintained such a thing a few years ago, but he never got around to mine before he disbanded the list. I'm still hoping to get something from him at a show some day, even if it's something as small as quick head sketch.
Mark Brooks: I've been on his possible commission list a few times, most recently at NYCC in 2015, but have never had the good fortune to be selected.
Mahmud Asrar: I totally spaced on getting onto his pre-show list for NYCC last year, and by the time I reached out, he was already booked up. Probably my only real regret about that show, which otherwise was a trove for me.
Marguerite Sauvage: I'm not sure there's anyone working today who produces art I just marvel over each month like Marguerite. I'm incredibly hopeful I can get a commission from her at a show this year.
Amanda Conner: This is a bit of a cheat, since I do have a piece from Amanda, but it was one I bought off eBay, so I don't really feel like it's FROM her. I know she doesn't sketch much at shows anymore, but I still always hold out hope that I'll be able to get a new piece with a more personal connection from her.
View Adam Reisinger's Gallery