IlluXcon Field Trip with Prof Gurney!

Every year in October the IlluXcon (aka IX Art Show) show at Goggleworks in Reading attracts 90 of the most prestigious Fantasy Illustrators in the country to display their work and converse with anyone interested in their process. Art buyers travel from across the country to purchase art directly from the creators.

On October 21st Professor John Gurney drove a van full of students to spend an afternoon viewing the work and chatting with the artists. They had an up-close look at art created in a variety of traditional media, including oil paintings, watercolor, colored pencil, scratchboard, and resin sculpture. They even attended a scratchboard workshop lead by Ruth Sanderson, renown illustrator and award winning scratchboard artist. Perfect timing, as the Intro to Illustration students just began their scratchboard unit!

Many of the artists and illustrators at IlluXcon have been creating illustrations for science fiction and fantasy books for decades, as well as roll playing games and collectables. They are adapting to the times and learning to be entrepreneurial, cultivating the growing circuit of “cons” (conventions) to sell their original work, posters, prints, books and obtain commissions. Everyone has heard of Comic-con, but there is also Horror-con, Fantasy-con, Gencon, etc. IlluXcon is the only major show in the country that focuses exclusively on “Imaginative Realism”, which is the general term used today to describe fantasy art.¬†These venues allow the creators to interact directly with each other, and with their fans in an informal setting. It was a great opportunity for Kutztown Students to chat with the creators, to view amazing work up close, and experience this important component of today’s art market.