By Jamison Wagner, Staff Reporter | Photos By : Christopher Uminga and Billy Fowler
The Metropolis Comic Art Gallery is working to bring comic artists; comic writers and other creators of art that are comic-derived altogether said Jody Masters, gallery owner.
The gallery is going to become a meeting place for the different groups that are comic-related, such as Sketch-a-holics a group that does drawings and 7000 B.C. an organization that does comic writing.
“This is exciting because Albuquerque has never had anything like this and some artists are now coming out of the woodwork as a result,” she said.
There is a Lego artist that has creates Lego sculptures and has entered the Lego championships, which he will be doing workshops on Lego art here at the gallery, she said.
For the Japan Invasion event in September the Lego artist is going to do a workshop on anime swords and attendees will be able to make their own Lego anime sword, she said.
“We have guys that will be doing workshops on comic book writing, inking and layouts, how to do digital inking and drawing. We have some people that do their own graphic novels that are going to come in and read them and I am really excited about all of this,” she said.
The dates for the workshops are still up in the air but the gallery hopes to have the information up on their website soon, she said. The art gallery is making plans to get the local schools involved as well along with the business up and down the street, she said.
“We are talking with the bike store downstairs and thinking of maybe getting together bike tours and a parade event with comic book heroes on bikes. I think it will be really fun,” she said.
The gallery is working towards becoming more than just a place for art but it is also a gallery where artists can showcase their artwork said Mike Borin, gallery co-owner.
Borin said, he want to have a venue for where these artists can put up their art on display when right now the artists have to wait for a convention to happen so they can display and sell their art in person.
“I was slabbing comics (a process where comics are graded professionally and then sealed in plastic) for a while and my father-in-law said ‘why are you even doing that when you cannot read them anymore?’ because he enjoys reading comics. I thought about it and realized that what I most enjoy about comics is the artwork and I like the cover artwork the most,” he said.
Because Borin and Jody own the building, the two of them were able to set up the gallery space for artists rent-free, he said.
“As far as the two of us know, no one else is doing anything like this. There are a ton of websites that sell comic book art but I have not found any other brick-and-mortar spaces that do what our gallery does,” he said.
When the gallery was first being set up, the six artists who are on display right now and had flown out from the East Coast for the Albuquerque Comic Expo were amazed, as they had never seen anything like the gallery before, Borin said.
“The six artists we have started with said they have all traveled around the country to the different comic expos but they have never seen anything like this before, and they found it to be incredibly exciting,” said Masters.
For upcoming events at the Metropolis Comics Expo visit metropoliscomicart.com