We had the good fortune of connecting with Jeff Ellison and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Jeff, what is the most important factor behind your success?
If you attend a lot of video game, anime, or comic book conventions, you are aware of the amazing artists that can be found in artist alley. I think it is very special to be able to own an original piece created by the artist. The secret to my success at the various conventions I attend is that I only sell original art and I specialize in a medium that is very difficult to work with. For my 3D paper art, I cut all of my pieces using only and X-acto knife and glue everything by hand. I refuse to use any form of mass production in the form of Cricut machines or laser cutters, because I want my customers to own a truly original, one of a kind piece that was created by the artist using their natural talent.
Alright, so let’s move onto what keeps you busy professionally?
I specialize in creating hand cut 3D paper art. What started off with creating 3D paper shadowboxes for my friends and family has led to my art gracing the covers of comics, magazines, and novels. Each piece I make is cut using only an X-acto knife and layered using archival quality materials. I pride myself in refusing to use any form of mass production to ensure that every piece I create is one of a kind. It was not an easy task working in this medium since I stumbled upon my talents by accident and I had to teach myself everything I know about paper art. One thing that I have learned to embrace over the years is to never rest on my laurels. I continue to try new things with each new design which keeps the art on my convention booth new and my talents improve with each show. My largest project to date is the creation of an original comic illustrated entirely by 3D paper art. The original comic entitled “Angie and Scarffle” should be available in 2021.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
Being a nerd, I would love to introduce more people to the amazing conventions held in Arizona. If I had to pick one for a friend who is new to the con scene, I would love to take them to the largest video game convention in Arizona, The Game On Expo! This show has everything for my fellow nerds. You can get autographs and chat with voice actors from various video games and anime. You can spend hours playing free arcade games that are spread throughout the gaming hall. There are amazing vendors and artists along with booths that feature the latest in independent video games and table top games. I can’t think of a better place to be!
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
Jeff Pina is an amazing Arizona based artist that took a chance in inviting me to showcase my art at the local Samurai Comics. Without him, I would not have the courage to advance my art career.
Cover art photographs by Erin Miller