New Video: Career-Spanning Interview with Petar Meseldzija!


In October, 2013 I was visiting The Netherlands while exhibiting as Flesk at the Strip Festival in Breda. The day after the show I visited Petar Meseldzja in his studio where we discussed a series of topics that spanned his entire career. In celebration of Petar’s The Book of Giants being available for pre-order we spent the last few weeks reviewing the footage and producing a two-part feature. I have posted the first part today which covers his career from his earliest days up till how he became the artist that he is today. The running time is 19 minutes. Next week I will post the second part where Petar offers his thoughts on “technique.”

Enjoy,

John

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Text and photograph copyright © 2014 John Fleskes. Videos © 2014 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2014 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

 

Announcing “Portfolio: The Complete Various Drawings” by Mark Schultz

Mark-Schultz-Portfolio-CompleteMark Schultz and I worked together this week to create a rough layout for the interiors and to finalize the cover design for Portfolio: The Complete Various Drawings. This will be coming out in August 2015.

We have been talking over the last year about collecting all of the Various Drawings collections into a single large format book. This 272 page, 11.5 x 12 inch collection will gather all of the material from the five volumes. We are also going through and readjusting all of the scans. This is going to be stunning!

Here is the official book description.

A compelling showcase spanning seven transformative years.

During an impressive period—2005 through  2012—Mark Schultz turned his attention to producing a body of personal works and private commissions. The results, collected in the five Various Drawings volumes, focused on subjects about which Schultz feels most passionate. Among them are characters and tableaux pulled from mythology, science-fantasy and pulp adventure, featuring steely warriors and  femme fatales—his popular pulpette women included. Schultz’s Xenozoic world is profusely explored through a series of dynamic compositions with his protagonists, Jack and Hannah, placed in a variety of impossibly dangerous situations. In addition to his self-generated pieces, there are many examples of Schultz’s commercial works done for comics, film and books, as well as renderings of newly discovered dinosaurs and more.

Portfolio: The Complete Various Drawings compiles the 275 drawings found in the original five volumes as well as the cover illustrations and special bookplates. Reformatted into this oversized version, the scan for each image has been reviewed and meticulously adjusted.  All images originally reproduced in black-and-white are now presented in full color.

Found within are fully rendered drawings executed in brush-and-ink, carbon or graphite pencil. In addition, Schultz shows his process with a wealth of preliminary sketches done for a range of projects, including his upcoming Storms at Sea illustrated novella. Add to this rare sketchbook material  and Schultz’s increasing exploration of color-tinted imagery , and you have one fascinating and diverse portfolio!

Enjoy,

John

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New Videos! Steve Rude Sketching at Rose City Comic Con

Hi, all,

We have such a blast producing these new videos for every Tuesday!

We went through our footage compiled during our visit to Portland, Oregon in September 2014 when we exhibited at the Rose City Comic Con.

Steve Rude sketching at our Flesk booth!

Brom, Terry Dodson and Steve Rude signing and sketching for fans at our Flesk/Spectrum booth. Thanks to everyone who visited us!

Enjoy,

John

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Text and photograph copyright © 2014 John Fleskes. Videos © 2014 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2014 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

The Book of Giants Stretch Goals Announced! Pre-Order and Get Special Bonus Items!

BOG-cover

Hi, all,

Both Petar Meseldzija and I are thrilled to have met our initial goal with The Book of Giants Kickstarter campaign through the generosity of our supporters. We will be sending the book to the printer immediately after this campaign ends in early January. Here is a summary of bonus items that people will receive if pre-ordered through Kickstarter.

1. Both the trade hardcover and deluxe edition are $10.00 off the cover price when ordered through Kickstarter!
2. Free USPS Media Mail shipping in the U.S.
3. Free exclusive print!
4. Free Book of Giants journal!

I would like to announce two stretch goals in the hope that we can offer you more bonus items.

The first is a 30 minute online streaming video of Petar creating the giant portrait that you see in the Kickstarter promotional video. I filmed Petar over the course of two days as he worked on this piece. He discusses and shows how he prepares his palette, then continues with the pencil underdrawing, followed by the underpainting, then the application of the oils.

The second stretch goal that we are adding is a full upgrade to the deluxe edition binding and slipcase. This would include quarter-binding, an inset plate on the front boards and a premium cloth on the slipcase. This would enhance the deluxe book with a much improved package. As with our previous Kickstarter campaigns we will be using all of the raised funds toward improving the production values.

These new features will come at no additional cost to those who order through Kickstarter if we meet our stretch goals.

Please note that the deluxe edition will be limited to only 500 copies and not 1000 copies as previously advertised.

Thanks again for your support!

Here’s the link to the campaign.

https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/448120746/the-book-of-giants

Enjoy,

John

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Pre-Order The Book of Giants by Petar Meseldzija and Get Free Rewards!

BookofGiants-promo-graphicHi, all,

Today we have launched a new Kickstarter campaign to take pre-orders for The Book of Giants by Petar Meseldzija. The art, text and designs are done for the book. We plan on sending it to the printer immediately after the campaign ends in early January.

Please visit this link here for the full details, to watch our promotional video, to view sample pages and to see the original art options and free rewards that are available when pledging through our campaign.

If we reach our goal we are making available some fun gifts to thank our supporters with. We also have a number of stretch goals in mind. Should we be fortunate enough, we will continue to add value and more gifts along the way.

One of the reasons why we like using Kickstarter is that it helps us to fine tune the final production components of the book. For instance, with our Drawing Beautiful Women: The Frank Cho Method Kickstarter campaign, its success allowed us to add all the bells and whistles and editions that we had hoped for, and let us reward our early supporters with a lot of bonus free goodies. This new Kickstarter campaign for The Book of Giants will determine if we can produce the deluxe edition and finalize the binding and extras that we can include in the book. The more advance orders we receive, the more upgrades we can include.

For instance, with the Frank Cho Kickstarter campaign funds that we received earlier this year, Frank and I poured all of the money, and more, into the book. Our goal is to have a beautiful book–something that we can be proud of. And that is the same philosophy that I have for each new project that I work on. I won’t work with people whose focus is the money. To me, that is the wrong focus and one that will blind and doom the project. Instead we focus on the work, the art, the designs, the book, the process and on our supporters. That is our definition of success and reward.

We invite you to take a look at The Book of Giants by Petar Meseldzija.

Enjoy,

John

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Flesk Update. New Books and Titles in Development

book-of-giants-ks

Petar Meseldzija’s “Book of Giants” coming from Flesk in early 2015.

Greetings, everyone,

This year has been one of great transition. While it is still not over, it will remain a year that has resulted in a series of significant changes that I felt were necessary to take if Flesk Publications, Spectrum Fantastic Art and myself were to continue to grow in a robust fashion.

In the summer of 2013, while everyone was congratulating me on taking over the reins of Spectrum and on the recent Flesk books successes–most notably with The Art of Brom–I knew how quickly success could become something of the past when it should instead be viewed as a stepping stone. I’m not a pessimist by any means, but instead one who can fully grasp reality and situations for what they are at the moment. I playfully told people that summer that in 2014 I would either be bankrupt or three times stronger. I was actually being serious. I’ve seen many companies reach a certain point of growth, achieve a series of successes and then make a series of detrimental decisions and disintegrate in a matter of months as they have no idea how to handle their new found growth. It was the end of that summer of 2013 that I began to focus heavily on revisiting the infrastructure of the business. It’s always best to be in a position to take this step when things are going well, rather than when they are going poorly.

The first thing that I did was to set aside all Flesk titles for nearly a year. I instead poured much of my energies into upgrading every process revolving around Spectrum. I then critically reviewed every process in the Flesk offices. I did both by asking myself the question, “How would I run these two brands if I just walked in the door today.” I treated each as if I had never been involved with them. I made a series of big decisions and took action to rebuild every function. I then took the time needed to enact each change. The result is a robust new Flesk and Spectrum. I feel confident that I am far better equipped for success than ever before.

One of the most significant changes for 2014 was the move to Publisher’s Group West (PGW) for our book trade distribution. PGW is one of the largest distributors in the country and their reach goes worldwide. PGW has a massive sales team and superior fulfilment facility. The result is greater penetration into the marketplace which means we will be reaching more stores and new audiences.

Another big change was moving into a new space in Santa Cruz, California. We now have a proper facility for handling a far wider assortment of opportunities. For instance, even when receiving twenty-two pallets of books and having six people working on fulfillment at the same time we had plenty of elbow room.

Additional changes involved gathering a hardworking, friendly and dedicated crew to help with the increased workload. I am very fortunate to have a great team.

Now, as we are primed for 2015 I have been gearing back up on Flesk books.

The Book of Giants by Petar Meseldzija is almost complete. We will be taking pre-orders through Kickstarter beginning on December 1st and sending the book to the printer in early January.

The artwork and writing is complete for Storms at Sea by Mark Schultz. We are designing the book now.

The Nexus Chronicles by Steve Rude is well into the designing phase. This book will be wrapped up in a matter of a few months.

The Art of Elfquest by Wendy Pini is roughly laid out and will be another title coming out in 2015.

Harvey Dunn: Where Your Heart Is… by Robert Karolevitz, a revised and expanded edition of the 1970 definitive biography on Dunn is slated for the printer on February 1st. This book I am honored to be packaging for the South Dakota Art Museum.

The Tribes of Kai by Daren Bader and Lance HaunRogue, a stunning new graphic novel will also be available in 2015 as it is now nearing completion with the designs starting shortly.

The World of Payne by Frank Cho and Tom Sniegoski is written with Frank working on the artwork now.

Spectrum 22: The Best on Contemporary Fantastic Art will round out the year!

These are just some of the examples of the over thirty titles that we have in development!

Enjoy,

John

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Text and photograph copyright © 2014 John Fleskes. Videos © 2014 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2014 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

New Video Interviews with Cory Godbey and George Pratt

Hi, everyone,

Our latest new videos feature interviews with Spectrum 21 jury members Cory Godbey and George Pratt. Spectrum 21: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art is now available!

Enjoy,

Enjoy,

John

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Text copyright © 2014 John Fleskes. Videos © 2014 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2014 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

 

New Video: Shelly Wan Interview!

Hi, all,

This week’s new video features an interview with Spectrum 21 jury member and Sketch Artist at Pixar Animation Studios, Shelly Wan. Spectrum 21: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art will be available this month!

Enjoy,

Enjoy,

John

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Text copyright © 2014 John Fleskes. Videos © 2014 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2014 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

New Video: J. Anthony Kosar Interview!

Hi, everyone,

This week we have an interview with J. Anthony Kosar which was filmed during the Spectrum 21 judging event.

We are currently packing all of the Spectrum 21 orders, complimentary copies for the artists and the Drawing Beautiful Women: The Frank Cho Method books. We are shipping hundreds of packages each day and will not stop working around the clock until all of the packages have been sent!

Enjoy,

John

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Text copyright © 2014 John Fleskes. Videos © 2014 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2014 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

 

Allen Williams Interview Video and Craig Elliott Time-Lapse Video!

Hi, all,

Here are another pair of videos for your enjoyment!

The first one is an interview with Allen Williams filmed during the Spectrum 21 judging event. The second is a time-lapse video of Craig Elliott during an oil painting demonstration at our Flesk Publications booth at the Alternative Press Expo in 2013. This was conducted from life over a three hour time-frame.

 

Enjoy,

John

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Text copyright © 2014 John Fleskes. Videos © 2014 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2014 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

Frank Cho at Lee’s Comics on Tuesday, October 28th!

Hi, everyone,

Frank Cho will be at Lee’s Comics in Mountain View, CA this Tuesday, October 28th from 5:00 to 7:00pm. We hope you can stop by and meet Frank!

Frank-Cho-KS-printsThe Spectrum 21 and Drawing Beautiful Women: The Frank Cho Method books will be showing up any minute now. We have the Frank Cho special prints for our Kickstarter supporters. We also just received the Spectrum 22 Call for Entries posters. We will include one poster in each of the Spectrum 21 books shipped direct from Flesk.

S22-CFE-posters

Enjoy,

John

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Flesk Book Sale Going On Until October 24! Early-Bird Price on Spectrum 21

Spectrum-21-cover

Hi, all,

We’ve got a generous book sale going on at the Flesk website. Limited quantities of the discounted titles are available at these greatly reduced prices. These prices are good until October 24th!

1. The Prince Valiant Page by Gary Gianni only $9.95 (cover price $29.95)

2. Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea adapted by Gary Gianni only $9.95 (cover price is $24.95)

3. Flesk Prime with art by Elliott, Gianni, Meseldzija, Schultz and Stout, only $9.95 (cover price $24.95)

4. James Bama: American Realist only $14.95 (cover price $34.95)

5. James Bama Sketchbook only $9.95 (cover price $24.95)

6. James Bama: Personal Works $14.95 (cover price $45.00)

Plus, take advantage of the new Spectrum 21 book that is arriving with us at the same time as the Frank Cho book. For a limited time, order direct from us for a special early bird price.

7. Spectrum 21: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art paperback only $29.95 (cover price $34.95)

8. Spectrum 21: The Best in Contemporary Fantastic Art hardcover only $36.95 (cover price $44.95)

Plus, there many more books on our Flesk site that you can add to your pledge.

Let us know if you have any questions!

Enjoy,

John

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Spectrum 22 Poster Art by Victo Ngai! Call for Entries Now Open!

Spectrum-22-Call-for-Entries-FleskWith the Spectrum 22 call for entries now open, I would like to highlight the poster which was done by Victo Ngai this year! I was thrilled when Victo agreed to do the poster. She was my first choice and someone who I feel represents the current state of illustration in a fresh way that helps define a new generation of artists who will be paving new ground for decades to come. Victo’s art is aptly titled “Rule Breaker,” a theme that has always been prevalent with Spectrum. The posters are being printed and will mail out soon. Online submissions open tomorrow! –John

Learn more about Victo here: http://victo-ngai.com/

Submit to the Spectrum 22 Call for Entries here.

Enjoy,

John

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Text copyright © 2014 John Fleskes. Artwork © 2014 Victo Ngai. All Rights reserved.

New Video: Pierre Alary Sketching Part Two


 

The first video we posted of Pierre Alary turned out to be quite popular. We’ve gone ahead and put together this second video of Pierre during his signing at our Flesk booth at Comic-Con International in San Diego in 2011. Pierre’s appearance was sponsored by Stuart Ng Books while he was there to promote his new titles. Watch as Pierre creates a lovely drawing for a lucky fan.

Be sure to visit Pierre’s website to see his latest work.

And remember, we post a new video every Tuesday. All of them can be found here: Spectrum Fantastic Art website video area.

Enjoy,

John

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Text copyright © 2014 John Fleskes. Videos © 2014 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2014 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

Frank Cho at New York Comic Con This Weekend

Frank-Cho-she-hulk

Hi, all,

Frank Cho will be at the New York Comic Con this weekend! He can be found at his artist alley table number Z2. Frank is bringing some books and prints with him, as well as some art and sketch covers like the sample shown here.

Information about the show can be found here.

Enjoy,

John

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Text copyright © 2014 John Fleskes. Videos © 2014 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2014 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

 

New Videos! Warren Chang and James Gurney

Hi, all,

There’s two new videos to share this week.

Warren Chang discusses his upcoming exhibit at the Monterey Museum of Art. Over a dozen paintings will be on display including a series of preliminary studies and drawings at the Monterey Museum of Art La Mirada running from October 23, 2014 to April 6, 2015. The opening reception is on October 23, 2014, 5:30pm-7:30pm. Warren Chang is nationally recognized for his realist paintings of biographical interiors and local fieldworkers of the Monterey County area. Chang creates subtle narratives that celebrate the human spirit. A native of Monterey, his work is also inspired by the novels of John Steinbeck and the magnetic beauty of the region. An exhibit catalog produced by Flesk Publications, the Monterey Museum of Art and the Winfield Gallery will be available direct at the museum during the exhibit and from the Flesk website and at the Winfield Gallery.

Did you see the Australian postage stamps illustrated by James Gurney that was released in late 2013? The stamp issue is called “Australia’s Age of Dinosaurs,” and it includes six stamp subjects against a scenic backdrop. Watch the following video made by Helpful Bear Productions to see the imagery created by this Spectrum Grand Master and member of the Spectrum Advisory Board.

And remember, we post a new video every Tuesday. All of them can be found here: Spectrum Fantastic Art website video area.

Enjoy,

John

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Text copyright © 2014 John Fleskes. Videos © 2014 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2014 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

Flesk Exhibiting at the Alternate Press Expo This Weekend!

Craig-Elliott-APE-demo-picture-06

Craig Elliott painting demonstration at APE in 2012. See him paint this weekend!

We’ll be exhibiting at the Alternative Press Expo (APE) in San Francisco, California this weekend. Come by our tables #222 and 223 to see what’s new and flip through sample copies of the books coming out this Fall: Spectrum 21 and Drawing Beautiful Women by Frank Cho! We’ll have copies of all of our books that are in print, plus some dinged copies at reduced prices.

We have secured our models for Craig Elliot who will doing painting demonstrations on Saturday and Sunday.

We hope to see you there!

Learn more about APE here.

Enjoy,

John

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Text and photograph copyright © 2014 John Fleskes. Videos © 2014 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2014 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

Frank Cho Video: Storytelling

 

Here’s a new video of Frank Cho working on one of his sequential pages included in the storytelling chapter of Drawing Beautiful Women: The Frank Cho Method. The book is shipping from the printer and will be here soon!

And remember, we post a new video every Tuesday. All of them can be found here: Spectrum Fantastic Art website video area.

Enjoy,

John

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Craig Elliott Painting Demonstration Video


It’s Tuesday! That means we have a new video to share. This new video is a 9 minute time lapse of Craig Elliott painting a portrait from the live model. This was done in 2013 at our Flesk booth during the Alternate Press Expo. Craig will be joining us again on October 4-5 at our booth at APE to do painting demos both days. We hope you can join us!

And remember, we post a new video every Tuesday. All of them can be found here: Spectrum Fantastic Art website video area.

Enjoy,

John

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Text copyright © 2014 John Fleskes. Videos © 2014 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2014 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

Flesk Pictures From Rose City Comic Con in Portland

The Rose City Comic Con wrapped up today. We had a Flesk booth there with special guest signings by Brom and Terry Dodson on Saturday afternoon and Steve Rude on Sunday afternoon. The show was well attended. The event staff was helpful and well organized, and the Portland area a beautiful area to visit. I even managed to squeeze in a visit to Powell’s Books on Friday. I picked up a nice assortment of new titles and took many notes that will find its way into the 2014 Spectrum 22 Year in Review.

Flesk-RCCC-01-flesk-boothHere’s a two part picture showing the view from our Flesk booth. Brom is on the left signing books, while Terry Dodson is on the right.

Flesk-RCCC-01-steve-rudeSteve Rude doing a drawing for a fan who requested a “pretty woman.”

Flesk-RCCC-01-steve-rude-2Steve Rude was a guest of Rose City Comic Con. He completed a new painting the day before the show, which he unveiled at the show.

Flesk-RCCC-01-steve-rude-3Steve shows off the finished sketch.

Flesk-RCCC-01-terry-dodsonEven though Terry had just the afternoon available to sign and sketch, he still managed to squeeze out about four drawings and an untold amount of autographs for people.

Flesk-RCCC-01-terry-dodson-2Terry Dodson adds a drawing to the sketch cover to X-Men #1 for a fan.

Thanks to everyone who stopped by the booth! We had a great time!

Enjoy,

John

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Text copyright and photographs © 2014 John Fleskes. Artwork © 2014 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

Flesk, Brom, Terry Dodson and Steve Rude at Rose City Comic Con This Weekend!

Flesk-home-banner-21

Come hang out at the Flesk Booth (#1202) this weekend at the Rose City Comic Comic Con in Portland, Oregon!

Brom and Terry Dodson will be signing at our booth on Saturday afternoon. Steve Rude will be signing on Sunday.

In addition to the many titles in stock, including Terry’s new Masquerade sketchbook, we will have sample copies of Spectrum 21 and Frank Cho’s Drawing Beautiful Women: The Frank Cho Method available to flip through. I can’t wait to show of these titles to the public for the first time. Currently the books are shipping from the printer. We’ll start mailing out the pre-orders and Kickstarter orders just as soon as they arrive, which should be in late October.

While I am at the Rose City show I’ll be talking with Terry about some upcoming title ideas that he has and also finalizing some details with Steve Rude regarding his new book The Nexus Chronicles.

I’ll also be walking around to see the various sketchbooks and new items that can be found at the artists tables. I want to get a jump start on the Spectrum 22 Year in Review for 2014. If you have something new and cool to show me at the show, please be sure to bring it to my attention so I can considerate it for a mention in Spectrum.

See you at the show!

Enjoy,

John

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New Video! Spectrum 21 Panel at Spectrum Fantastic Art Live

Cory Godbey, Allen Williams, J. Anthony Kosar and George Pratt talk with John Fleskes about the Spectrum 21 judging event at Spectrum Fantastic Art Live on May 11, 2014. These four of the five jury members (Shelly Wan, who was not present, was the fifth judge for Spectrum 21) reminisce about the day and what it’s like to be a Spectrum judge. This video starts a few minutes into the conversation. The volume is low due to the sound recorder being far away. Please turn up the volume to hear better.

And remember, we post a new video every Tuesday. All of them can be found here: Spectrum Fantastic Art website video area.

Enjoy,

John

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Text copyright © 2014 John Fleskes. Videos © 2014 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2014 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

World of Payne by Frank Cho and Thomas Sniegoski Coming Spring 2015 From Flesk!

ghost-dog-world-of-payneWith Drawing Beautiful Women: The Frank Cho Method printed and now shipping to our warehouse we can turn our attention to our next project with Frank Cho and with the addition of Thomas Sniegoski!

Frank Cho and Thomas Sniegoski are happy to announce their next creator owned project, World of Payne.

World of Payne is an urban fantasy graphic novel hybrid told in a unique narrative prose and sequential art style; part novel and part comic book. It’s a story of psychic private investigator, Lockwood Payne, who is actually a modern day sorcerer from an ancient society of witches and wizards and his strange misadventures in the world of the occult and unrealities. Along the way, he’s helped by his ever-loyal and unflappable friend, Doctor Hurt, an urgent care doctor in the strip mall next door to Payne’s office, and the beautiful Michelle, a witch-in-training.

The introductory book, World of Payne: Book 0 – Ghost Dog, will be published by Flesk Publications in spring 2015. It will introduce all the major characters of this world and set up the upcoming horror adventure book series.

Enjoy,

John

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Text copyright © 2014 John Fleskes. Artwork © 2014 Frank Cho. All Rights reserved.

New Video of Pierre Alary Sketching!

During the 2011 Comic-Con International in San Diego our friends at Stuart Ng Books asked if we could provide some space for Pierre Alary to sign and sketch in his latest books. I think his work is amazing and quickly cleared some table space at our Flesk booth and invited Pierre to sit with us. While digging through our film archives I discovered some footage that I took of him. Here, Pierre sketches in his Sinbad, Belladone and Alary Sketchbook titles.

And remember, we post a new video every Tuesday. All of them can be found here: Spectrum Fantastic Art website video area.

Enjoy,

John

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Text copyright © 2014 John Fleskes. Videos © 2014 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2014 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.

 

New Video! Frank Cho’s “Drawing Beautiful Women.”


 

This week’s video features Frank Cho in his studio working on a piece that is featured in his new book, Drawing Beautiful Women: The Frank Cho Method. This title will be coming out this fall from Flesk Publications. You can learn more and pre-order the book here.

And remember, we post a new video every Tuesday. All of them can be found here: Spectrum Fantastic Art website video area.

Enjoy,

John

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Text copyright © 2014 John Fleskes. Videos © 2014 Flesk Publications. Artwork © 2014 its respective artists. All Rights reserved.