Collector Spotlight – Dave W
Hi everyone, please join me today in welcoming renown Hulk collector Dave W! In addition to being an experienced OA collector, Dave’s an extremely friendly chap who’s always up for a chat with fellow fans and ready to share his appreciation for art. Dave’s collection is impressive not only for its quality and depth, but also as it reflects his long held love for Hulk and passion for the hobby!
Hello, my name is Dave and I am a proud father of 3 children. Born and raised in Ohio, I discovered comics in the latter half of the 70’s. I have collected one thing or another my entire life. I think the first thing I started collecting was baseball cards after my dad gave me the 1973 Topps Cincinnati Reds team set at 6 or 7 years old. Comics followed shortly thereafter and I have been collecting comics, figures, memorabilia, statues, etc. for as long as I remember before getting bit with the art bug about 8 or 9 years ago. I have stopped collecting a few times in my life (cars and girls in high school, getting married) but the hobby always seems to call me back! Art is the most expensive hobby so it demands nearly my entire hobby budget these days, save the small trinkets and an impulse buy here and there. I still read comics, albeit not as frequently. For me, comic art was a natural progression from previous hobbies and one I wish I had discovered many years earlier (like most collectors).
To the question “why do I collect?”, I have no answer. The drive has just always been there and once I have more than one of something the urge to “collect” more follows. If you have the gene, you just learn to understand it and go with it (or not).
The art was always the biggest draw for me when reading comics and I was constantly drawing super heroes, dinosaurs, and monsters growing up. I wanted to be a comic artist at one time but turned down a partial scholarship offer to a local art college after graduating high school. I discovered the art collecting hobby at a time when I was heavily into collecting comic-based statues (Bowen Designs, Sideshow, etc.). I was a regular at statueforum.com (I am now a site moderator) when a lot of fellow members that collected statues discovered a shared love for art, and it just exploded from there! In fact, so much art talk took place on the site that the admin stood up a comic art section, which is still my favorite part of the forum and where I spend most of my time on the site these days.
Once I discovered OA, my hobby budget started to shift away from statues (they are pricey) and towards art (even pricier); before too long I was pretty much done buying statues. My first out-of-state convention was the Wizard World Chicago show (before they were terrible) in 2008 and I spent every dime on art. From that point on, there was no looking back!
I dipped my toe in the water by focusing on commissions, before eventually branching out to published original pages. My focus these days is on published pages and a themed collection of Bob Larkin Hulk poster homage commissions.
Most people I know have collections that are based on artist(s), era, nostalgia, etc. but my collection is purely character-based. I collect Hulk artwork – everything from commissions, to published pages, advertising art, and anything in between. Why Hulk? My favorite character, probably going back to the days watching the TV series with my father (he passed shortly after the series ended). It is how I choose to focus my collection but not all that I appreciate. I am a big Marvel fan and have started thinking about getting a few non-Hulk art examples that are favorites on the nostalgia meter (Trimpe Godzilla and Shogun Warriors, Rom, Devil Dinosaur, FF circa issue 200, Romita/Layton Iron Man, Secret Wars, Captain America, etc.).
What am I on the lookout for now? Hulk 227 pages. Sal Buscema pages from his early part of the Hulk run. I would love a Defenders page. A nice twice-up Silver Age page is high on my list. Any great looking Hulk art. I have several other things I am searching for and they are listed in my CAF gallery. Have a gander: Want List For Dave W (JadeGiant.com)!
I have bought art from most of the common vehicles in the hobby. My favorite is to buy from fellow collectors, as I really enjoy the process of talking about the art and finding a common ground on price. Even if I don’t end up buying pieces I often end up making a new contact and/or friend! I enjoy digging through the eBay muck and have pulled a lot of art out of poorly listed auctions, under-priced BINs, and pieces that just fly under the hobby radar. I bought a few pieces via auction at HA and CLink but all the shill bidding discussions have caused me to pull back from those sites. I also do a few cons each year and have found some great pieces at the shows (commissions and published pages). I actually enjoy the grind of the hobby and don’t mind at all looking for the diamonds in the rough. I have met a lot of really great people this way and found some nice art. Needless to say, I enjoy the hunt!
I picked up a Sal Buscema splash (Hulk issue 228 final page) last year which took a long time to locate and purchase. Sal is my favorite artist so this was as close to a grail as I will probably ever come! Instead of retelling the story, kindly check out the above link to my CAF gallery for the full description.
I attended my first live auction at HeroesCon a few years back and was the last man standing when another bidder bowed out on a great Ed McGuinness Hulk cover. It was a thrilling experience and a piece of art that blows my mind every time I look at it!
This is a page from my favorite issue of the Hulk, 227. This issue is off the charts in terms of both nostalgia and artistic appreciation! Drawn by Sal Buscema and inked by Klaus Janson, it is the perfect combination of art and story-telling. I haven’t posted this to CAF yet but will likely add it to my gallery some time this year.
My primary commission outlet these days is to add to my Bob Larkin homage gallery. The shot above is from Sal Buscema. I really enjoyed getting this done via Sal’s rep and it was an instant favorite of my collection (but I have several more in the gallery that I love as well – very hard to tag one as a favorite)!
I am a huge fan of the comic book medium and love talking about comics and the history of the art within, especially when it comes to the Hulk. Feel free to reach out to me to talk Hulk, comics, art, etc. I love looking at artwork not online, so please send me an email if you have something to share! I have a website dedicated to my gamma obsession and love to hear from any who have that shared passion. Check out the site – feedback is always appreciated: www.jadegiant.com.
If you are a Sal Buscema fan, you might enjoy a podcast interview that was done for the site a few years back where Sal talks exclusively about our favorite green-skinned goliath. It’s must-listen material for any Sal Buscema Hulk fans!
You can view the rest of Dave’s collection here in his CAF gallery.