images copyright James Groman
10 Questions With James Groman
1.... who is your favorite artist?
My favorite artist by far is Frank Frazetta. I have never looked at another fantasy artist’s work and got the rush I get from a Frazetta painting. The first time I saw an actual Frazetta painting in person hanging on the wall at his museum in East Stroudsburg, P.A., I got a tear in my eye.
2.... do you offer workshops for artists?
The only artist workshops that I have participated in were for younger students as part of my day job at American Greetings Properties.
3.... what do you like to listen to while you work?
Sometimes I actually have an old B-monster movie running on the computer or DVD player while I work….but the music I listen to when working are bad-ass, fully orchestrated movie soundtracks. Nothing better for getting you in the mood to work on some monster/fantasy artwork or sculpture.
4.... what medium and tools do you use to create your art?
I’ve been an artist my whole life, working professionally for almost 30 years now. I paint with acrylics, ink with a variety of sharpies, felt tips and a staedler 3000 brush pen. I love to draw/sketch with a blue violet or black prisma color pencil. I also do full color artwork and renderings in Adobe Photoshop and Illustrator.
I am a sculptor as well, working with Super Sculpey, Castilene and Monster Clay.
5.... during an average week how many hours a day / week do you work on creating art?
At my day job I may average about 6-8 hours of work on artwork a day. I also have a thriving ‘after hours’ freelance business where I may spend about 2-4 hours a night after my day job.
6.... are you working your dream job?
I recently had a job-review where I actually did a lot of soul searching about this. Like most artists, I never ever really feel satisfied with my career, always feeling like there is something else I want to do, or achieve. My day job at American Greetings Properties has me working as part of a small crew of illustrators responsible for the design of anywhere from 3 to 5 entertainment properties at any given time. Some may be preschool, some are boys action adventure properties. We are partners with Weta Workshop in New Zealand on 2 of these properties, and I have traveled and worked with animation studios in L.A., New Zealand and India. I still get to work on my own artwork at home, doing sculpts for small collector toy companies as well as selling my own work at conventions and through my blog store. All these things have given me the ability to support my extended family and buy all the art books and monster movie DVD’s that I want. When I think of things that way, I must be pretty close to living the dream.
7.... do you feel its important for others to pursue their dream jobs?
I definitely feel any artist should be all that they can be. Always strive to do the work that you dream of doing. Make the moves you have to make to get there, try not to spend every ounce of your time doing work unrelated to your desired feild. You should always find the time to do artwork that will help you get the jobs that you really desire.
8.... where can people see your work (online, conventions or exhibits)?
I have a blog www.jgroman.blogspot.com and blog store that can be found at: www.thegromanstore.blogspot.com . I’ll do conventions here and there, most recently San Diego Comicon with Monsterverse comics, and Monsterpalooza in Burbank California.
9.... was there a certain moment that you knew you wanted to be an artist?
Can’t ever remember having that ‘eureka’ moment where I knew I wanted to be an artist. I just can’t remember being good enough at anything else to pursue anything else. Sounds stupid perhaps, but it seems like art chose me, I didn’t choose it.
10.... is there anything else you would like to add or say to other artists?
Work, work, work! Don’t be one of those artists that talk about what they are going to do more than actually doing it. Study other artists, and try to strive to be on their level, not always in their shadow. What one man can do, another man can do. I may not be the best artist working today, but it will always be my goal to try.
images copyright James Groman