Wednesday, February 26, 2014

A week after

Hey there sports fans All here with the latest:

So it is already a week into the show and it only feels like yesterday that the show was underway at N.W.I.P.A.  for the Hop Thru the Heart show started.  It has been a strange run so far with lots if ups and downs.  A few days after the show began I had felt a certain disconnection with anything artistic.  This was hard for really I hadn't anything to really stress out about.  I mean the night before had been successful sale and a big one as well for the Kid. 
  Pehapes is was seperation anxiety of an artist and their creation?  Just an idea.

"Down with the Weirdness"  - Sold!
And a potential for more custom work down the road and as far back east as Brooklyn New York.  To me that is EXTREMELY awesome.  In New York there are a number of movers and shakers that coukd see this west coast artist with a very unique art style.  It high time to get things going with the.   contract to be written down.
Of course this also adds another possibility to having the work seen by people in the European community.  
This is a Cool situation for the kid.  I know that the flavor of work that I'm doing would sell well there particularly around the Baltic States, Gemany, Sweden. Denmark.

It kinda cool when you have sales that you don't have to even push.  The t-shirts are like that right now for me.  And with a second batch in the works based upon The Down with the Weirdness piece I know I could be selling well.   The other avenue of sales are the prints being made off of the large originals.
A number of friends have been after me to think about prints based upon the work but for some reason I haven't followed up with this.   In last 4 to 5 years Is since I moved to P-town interest and style have matured into something really special.  I know that my friends think that they are talking to a brick wall because I don't respond right away and that I am being obtuse but I AM weighing the posiblies of what to sell.  It was a confidence issue with what to put out there.
But now with the chance to push forward other devices are now coming in to the company to help with selling the large scale work.  A wand scanner.
What this little guy will be able to do is allow me to scan my 16"x20" scratchboards (or larger)  at home and make personal adjustments without having to pack up all the from home and traverse distances with original art work that could get damaged easily.
Again the tools of the 21st Century.
By yhe end of this uear I should have prints abd postcards availible to the public.    Sweet!

IT SEEMS that the name building game is going well for me and continues.  A week after the show I was working at the art store and was told by my friend Robert that he had put in a good word for me for another venue for me to show at.  I thought this would be great to get into some other place other than bar lounge.
Then about three days later I was contacted by Vicky and saying that she and her boss would be interested in taking a look at the work as it was hanging already.
But let face facts the work runs a little on the dark side.   And might not be to everybody's liking.  That's a fact and one that I am willing to cop to.

WELL Inhuman Torch is still moving along but a bit slowly but every time I have started working on him again it looks awesome.  I am hoping to have him done soon.

What the Hell you say?  Another comic?
Yes sir another one but one that is just for a fun and is aimed at making a mini comeback that made stand out at the comic shows early on when i first started the show circuit.
This was in response to the Robot Monster piece that I had sold at the HOP show.  I liked it so much and the response I was getting made me just start working on something.  And of course when I started working on it I felt like I was channeling (and still am) Jack Kirby!
Lots of fun and can't wait to see how it turns out!
And I am out of here!

Sunday, February 16, 2014


Hey there sports fans,  Al here with the latest:
  AS OF THIS  sunday, the Hop Thru The Heart show will have started and on it's way to being another feather in my cap and professional show portfolio.  Again things are starting to work in my favor and we'll see if I can drum up some commission work along the way between shows and the like.  But of course when you are hanging out your work for all to see and there is no subterfuge to deflect issues or displeasure of your work.  All you have is your own work to show and it can in fact, be nerve racking.
  This Thursday (6:40 PM ) as I write this blog because I will not have a lot time to write during the show but I am feeling that little pang of uncertainty.  It's a different kind of feeling than what you would feel as people pass you by when looking at your table for a new comic book to read.  
Doing an art show like this is one of the reasons you ask yourself "Why put a maximum amount of effort into something that has little return?"  Don't get me wrong, I love working on comics!  
But simple truth is if I want to be a successful artist I have to literally look at the big picture.  It just doesn't make sense especially at this stage of the game for me to keep working and slaving away on something that is stifling me from becoming a successful artist.  I have worked hard on my comics and have found a small group of supporters for the work but why hadn't I used the contacts that I have made over the years to push myself forward?
  That's a question that will probably be answered when I am on my deathbed.  BUT BACK TO THE SHOW- there is a silver lining with all the comic work I have done.  It set a standard for cranking out work fast.  With the branching out with merch, work has already started selling before the show has gone up.  The tee-shirts are already selling and that is a good strong sign that I know what the hell I am doing.
Tonight after the amount of work that I will be dealing with at the art store and the weather seems to be nasty for this early this week with snow and ice and now water could be the biggest culprit that could ruin any artist.  But planning in advance for anything like putting things in plastic boxes and asking for help in transportation.  It kinda funny that NWIPA is at best a block and a half away from my house but at 7:00 - 7:30ish traffic on two streets and a small park to traverse getting work to them would be a major hassle.  Come to the rescue Dan DePaolo - AGAIN.  On top of that my roommates  (A.K.A. my Fan Club) were there at show's hanging of pieces.  Nothing beats a good jab when have a beer in one hand and piece of art to hang in the other!
There was an "add on" I needed while I was hanging the work on Friday night and I think it is worth note because I think it's funny as hell -THE ARTIST'S STATEMENT.
While I was hanging the work my aforementioned fan club got a hold of the artist's statement and realized that I have a tendency to switch back and forth between 1st person and 3rd person when I write.  I think this has always been an issue for myself because as I write I visualize the way someone else might look at what they are seeing rather than focusing on what I have right in front of me.  I think that is stems to seeing that approval from others but this is what it looks like

What I hate about Artist’s Statements is that they are nothing more than a selfish way of saying, “These works have such deep meaning.”  If you like my work, great.  You don’t need me to ramble on about it.  LET THE WORK SPEAK FOR ITSELF!
That being said, here is my Artist Statement and a little about my background. 
Growing up I was heavily influenced by sci-fi movies and television of the 1950’s and 60’s, as well as the “Sword and Sorcery” movies and books of the 1970‘s 80’s.  I loved anything that twisted and distorted reality.
I had a natural gift for drawing, and in art school I learned many artistic techniques that could be applied to my stand-alone scratchboard pieces. I am extremely motivated and a self-starter, so I’m always working towards a new plateau in the medium.  Scratchboard is it for me.  I imbed the work with serious content and distort the masses!
I breathe, think, and sleep art.  My work reflects many of my passions and interests. 
I am many different things to many different people.

Contact me for commissions at OR OR (541) 870-5267

A late night for the kid putting the work out and closing out the bar.

WELL tonight is the night that the show gets underway officially.  Now as I was hanging and putting up pieces people started to look at what was going up.  But they didn't want to interfere with asking questions.  Thank you guys for those small favors.  

But the work still continues on but this time I will be ready with square apt device to sell work wall pieces, sketchbooks , comics, small 5"x7"s buttons and t-shirts.  
I say thank you Mr. George Leon for lending me his square for making that possible since I couldn't find mine anywhere.

Waking from my deep sleep it was time to assess the damage I inflicted upon others around me last night.
Firstly I was impressed by how many people showed up.  A lot people I didn't think would show up did.  That surprised me and made me very happy.  That set a great mood for the rest of the night.  Of course as the show began to get underway Jackson Wyatt rolled out some snackings for people to eat while drinking.  The regulars for NWIPA were already in the house and keep coming in which was cool because they had sen how the work was progressing in the bar.
Then of course there was the change in the music.  Jackson and Dan have taste for a particular type of music that they play for their establishment but let present my own playlist  on top the event.  A bit of music that has inspired me over the decades of doing art work.  The first out of the gate as ipod was set for random was Ennio Morricone "The Ecstasy of Gold" from the Good the Bad and Ugly.  Perfect!

Well the night went well is all I really could say so thank you so much to all those people friends and family that came out to support the kid. 
And trust me folks, there is a whole lot more to come.  
Bigger work, prints to be made and pricing to go up.
The show will be up for the next month and if your needing to know where and when check out this link for directions.  (click here).

"Robot Monster"
5"x7" scratchboard SOLD!

Sunday, February 9, 2014


Hey there sports fans, Al here with the latest:
HOP THRU THE HEART is only a mere week away!  And as look at the beginning of my inventory I will have a total of 29 pieces this time around!  That is a huge jump from the 17 I had at the ONE MAN SHOW last year at the Slingshot in October.  
The biggest difference is that a majority of this shows work is that a bunch of the images are not framed.  Mainly just the color pieces are unframed.  The 8"x8" 's.
Some of the color work is reworked images that I had done in scratchboard that I loved and wanted to see if I could make them translate to a color medium so today being my only real day off is the biggest push of all varnishing pieces in the kitchen with a hairdryer to make the curing time speed up.  
Outside of N.W.I.P.A.

There is a bit more that you can check out at this spot for details for HOP THRU THE HEART.

An overview of the work for the HOP THRU THE HEART show
coming up this next week.

Things have been pretty good and can't complain.  But there was a interesting little bit earlier this week as I found out that a commssion that I had done for Lazy Bones Studios "Anne Frankenstein" not only made it into a new portfolio ( I have the first one) they had just published and it looks like I also got the cover as well.  SWEET!  That is one helluva feather in the artistic cap.

You can check that out here for details.  

Anne Frankenstein Copyright 2014 Lazy Bones Studios

Two of the new 16"X20" scratchboards
for the HOP THRU THE HEART Show 

That is one helluva feather in the artistic cap.
You can check that out here for details.  
So if you're looking for a cool portfolio to buy and add to your collection- here you go.

Long over due TRIBUTE piece for my friend Ty Wakefeild and his comic character Captain Cure.  This was a hard one for me to do because I wanted to make sure that I captured the look and feel of him and show him as vibrant and strong as his creator was with his fight with cancer.  
Hopefully there will be more with this character in the future to show kids that they too can fight the good fight even when they are down.
So here's you Ty.

Captain Cure TRIBUTE
"Captain Cure" 2014 Copyright Ty Wakefeild
and Alternative Reality Comics.
Johnny Vega, Corpse Cop and Corrax the Seeker
2014 Copyright Alan Bennett and BBVA 
I had been approched by one the owners of N.W.I.P.A. to be their goto guy for designing their special events posters.  For me that is almost like a regular art job!  Pretty cool if you ask me. 
It could turn into full time gig BUT that's just me hoping for that to happen.

   If your wanting to look at some of the older blog for Black Box Comix you can check them out here. Black Box Comix Blog.
There is also Twitter to follow and Tumbler The Other Scratchpad   as well 
Or if you're interested in purchasing something that catches your eye  check out here on the Big Cartel web site.  Big Cartel.
And of course is always the backlog of comics here at Indyplanet.

And that is it for the kid and I am out of here.

Sunday, February 2, 2014

"Hop" UNDER way.

Hey there sports fans , Al here with the latest:
Well as the month begins to get closer and closer to the end A show looms in the distance.  HOP THRU THE HEART.
And if you haven't figured out that is a play on words for the fact that the show  will be hung up on Valentine's Day and opening the following Saturday.
Planning this is happening way faster than I was expecting,  But I think that I can do it.  Lot's of things beginning 
to fall into place .  But I get back to it art to crank out and paint !

An Overview of some of the new work that will be featured
at "Hop Thru the Heart" show next month at N.W.I.P.A.
Copyright 2014 Alan Bennett and BBVA

There is a bit more that you can check out at this spot for details

Poster for the "Hop Thru the Heart" show.

Now the biggest thing is that I have been so damn busy working on art work I had not posted last week about the pieces as they are coming along.  Each always has something more to be added to make just about right before showing.  unfortunately (heh) they will never be perfect because if they were I'd be a God of Art.  So far I haven't seen that title being added to the working man titles yet but I am waiting.
"Down with the Weirdness" 16"x20"
Almost done.
Regardless of that, here is a few images for the update.  I still have to finish about two painted pieces left to go and I still have to get out and poster the area near the show to see if I can drum up some more work with a few other bar/lounges near Foster before I make the jump to approching just solid art galleries.  i know a lot of my friends would say "Just do it!" but like a resume for a new job, you have to build the gallery shows especially if your showcasing solo work.

Outside of show -and snow!

Darkslinger Table Set up.




Show floor setup.

Mean Cupcake Girl.
 (just kidding she was really nice.)

Toby Cat!
Now this was a odd kinda of thing for the kid because it was a trip for just visiting an old friend and nice break from the regular day grind that I have been doing for about the last two years at the two jobs I have + art.  Adam Watson of Darkslinger had asked both George Leon and myself if we would be interested in heading out to see Angie and her kids out in Clarkston WA.  We had both said yes but to unforseen things one George's kids had a burst appedndix and rushed to the hospital.  He doing is doing better now and in recovery. 
So that just left me and Adam  to head over.  
After a evening of helping Angie's kids with some of their 4H projects art wise- we got in the SUV and headed north to Pullman WA the following morning.  
The show and size were about on par with the Olympia Comic Fest but seemed to be better prepared and organized for both Vendors, guestes and visiting public.  The one thing that we weren't exspecting was the snow.
Though that didn't stop us from getting there we just had not done a show where there was enough snow to make several snowmen.
Aside from that sales for Darkslinger were surpirsingly good.  Something we weren't exspecting  but like good troopers we manned up!  
Now the question was why didn't I bring anything with me to sell?  In my opinion, you should never presume that you have the right to show any of your own work at somebody's table.  It's just bad from. Besides that you shouldn't take away from that person's ablity to sell their work    I just didn't feel up to bring anything this time around and just man the table for Adam when he stepped away so he could stretch his legs.  
Though small and first round for a show we were both impressed by the set up and ease to get in and set up.
As with so many pros and cons of any show I think the only two were the time it stayed open to and the cosplay contest.  The time it stayed open to 6pm just wasn't gonna work for this show.  By 5pm most of the vendors had already bugged out.  Weather may have played a part but I don't think it was.  The other was as soon as the cosplay contest was over all sales just died and evoprated.  So that's about it would I go back?
One of the better ideas
 we had seen for a show.
Yes but I think it's time to start bring Black Box with it's own table again.  I am pretty sure that I could have sold a fair amount of work had I brought anything to sell.

If your wanting to look at some of the older blog for Black Box Comix you can check them out here. Black Box Comix Blog.
There is also Twitter to follow and Tumbler The Other Scratchpad   as well 
Or if you're interested in purchasing something that catches your eye  check out here on the Big Cartel web site.  Big Cartel.
And of course is always the backlog of comics here at Indyplanet.

And that is it for the kid and I am out of here.