I met Arnold threw A good friend of mine Vince Sunico who is also involved with Spent Pencils.
Arnold - For those who have never heard of Spent Pencils, it is currently managed by myself and a fellow friend and illustrator Vince Sunico. It’s a place where young artists are given the opportunity to showcase their artwork if they want to pursue a career in the creative field.We accomplish this by inviting them to art specific events, such as comic conventions, and house some of their work on our website.Spent Pencils was started back in 2007. It was originally formed as an art club that comprised of mostly close friends. It was also called something else….but that’s another story. It wasn’t until that same year when I ventured into my first artist alley (Fan Expo Canada) and was introduced to Vince Sunico that I realized that this could be taken to another level. After getting to know Vince we found we shared a common interest in mostly anything that’s comic book related. We also understood how hard it was, during our younger years, to find someone or some place that provide support and guidance to assist us find our dream art career.
We are not going to profess to be subject matter experts, but together we decided to take on the challenge of building Spent Pencils and see where this journey will take us. It wasn’t easy. We went through trials and errors building Spent Pencils to where it’s at today. Add to the fact that we also juggle our full time job…which sadly is not comics related. After three years tour of duty doing conventions and shows, we are finally getting comfortable.
We try to make it as simple as possible for anyone interested in being part of Spent Pencils. Vince and I will deal with the organization and administrative stuff, all we ask the members is to be committed and productive. There is no contract involve. If a crew is picked up by a potential employer, we've done our job.
Keef - What is your individual roll in SPENT PENCILS?
Arnold -I take on the administrative stuff when booking upcoming convention shows as well as maintain the website. I’m also the communications person, addressing any news or issues Spent Pencils may have.Vince deals with the financial stuff (I suck at math) and talent recruitment.Together, we handle the creative decisions for the promotional stuff. We equally share the expenses needed to keep the SP ship afloat. When it comes to PR, it’s who feels comfortable at the moment.And after all said and done, we still do our best to manage and be productive with what we love to do best…..Draw!!.
Keef - What got you into art, and what turned you on to comics?
Arnold -Wow, “what got me into art?”…looking deep inside, it was a family gift. As far as I know, my mom, dad and aunts are creative people. It was almost like I had no choice but to like it and get into it…ha-ha-ha. Seriously though, being exposed to those Saturday morning cartoons definitely influenced me….and it was an easy path to follow Superman cartoons to comic books. From the latter, all the cards just fell in to place.
Keef -If you could acquire 3 franchises that have died off, and turn them into successful comic books... what would you pick.
Arnold-Ooh, an imaginary opportunity…well, let me see….Top of my head, my three choices would be, Silverhawks, Five Deadly Venoms, and Dungeons and Dragons cartoons, the one where each kids were given special weapons to survive the fantasy world.
Truth be told, Silverhawk is my second choice, next to Thundercats. Five Deadly Venoms would have been cool to update and expand the story through the comic book medium. As a fan of action movie, this could have just as much potential to be brought to the big screen as Mortal Kombat. I would cater Dungeons and Dragons to the younger crowds. The world of D & D could be a place to teach moral lessons.
Keef- I have seen you guys in action several times, you guys are machines when it comes down to drawing people’s requests. What is the most fun to draw for you, and have you ever had a strange request that you may have had to turn down?
Arnold- I’m a DC fan, so mostly any characters from that company. I’ll admit, I still think my weakness is drawing women, so it takes me longer drawing Wonder Woman or Supergirl.
As far as strange requests, I’ve done a few that I didn’t necessarily need to turn down. They were innocent enough. What I will turn down is any obscene requests. Pass that down to another artist, let alone another studio please.
Keef- What are you looking forward to fanexpo most?
Arnold -What I look forward to fanexpo is obviously seeing the fan. Having only three years of attendance in this event under our belt, it is awesome to see that we’ve developed a small following. Second to that, enjoying the camaraderie Spent Pencils developed with some of the other artists on the floor. First day of the show, we see all these other artists, greet them and wish each other luck for the upcoming long hours we will all face. The end of the show, we reflect on all the craziness we experience and look forward to the next event.
Keef- Where can we find spent pencil comics/art work for sale?
Arnold- At the moment, Vince Sunico’s artwork can be found at Stadium Comics in Brampton, Ontario. These guys has been supporting Vince for a while now as well as many other local artists. Silver Snail Comics store in Toronto, Ontario also carries a couple of Paul’s originals for sale. These guys has been around since I can remember, and man, I can’t say enough positive thing about how supportive they are with independent artists.