Monday, February 14, 2011


by Arnie Fenner In my post two weeks back I hinted at another Spectrum-ish bit of news that we needed to work out the details for prior to mentioning.
As some of you know, my mom passed away in January (and thanks very much to everyone that sent notes of condolence); while I've been going through her effects I've discovered sketchbooks from her youth (who would've guessed that mom would draw pin-ups?) as well as works of mine that she'd kept through the years. It made me think about how she had encouraged my early interest in drawing (as I'm sure most of our moms did), how she had bought me how-to books and paints and pens and paper. And it got Cathy and I thinking about the importance of nurturing and encouraging talent.
Rebecca Guay has started something wonderful with her annual Illustration Master Class each June in Amherst, Mass. Who wouldn't benefit from a week's intensive instruction from the likes of Donato, Boris, Dan Dos, and company? And it got us thinking that it would be a good thing to sponsor a scholarship for a student (or otherwise aspiring artist) to attend such a once-in-a-lifetime workshop.
So...we think we will.
With this year's class just a few scant months away and pretty-much full, it seems to be too short of notice to do this for 2011—so with Rebecca's approval we're tossing the idea out now to plant the seed for the 2012 class. When Rebecca opens enrollment for the '12 Master Class, Cathy and I will sponsor a scholarship for a worthy artist who might otherwise not be able to attend. Someone with the passion to create who just needs a little help and instruction and encouragement. When the time comes—say in the latter part of this year—I'll give an e-mail address for hopefuls to send a jpeg of their work and a couple of lines about themselves; Cathy and I (and maybe a surprise judge) will pick someone as the recipient of a scholarship to the 2012 Illustration Master Class. Getting there and back home and the necessary supplies will be the student's responsibility (which makes the extra lead-time both helpful and important); it's never too soon to start thinking about the future.
Obviously, I'll post a reminder as the time nears.
Oh...and for those interested in more information about Spectrum Live!, we've listed some special guests on our website.


  1. I cannot express how great an idea this is, and how much credit it gives you and Cathy. Rebecca has transformed many lives through her class, including mine. Expanding its effect through a scholarship like this is marvelously well conceived. Well done.

    With your Spectrum experience and open hearts, I can't imagine a better scholarship board. Talk about an adrenalin boost to the winner! "I was the Spectrum scholarship winner for the 2012 Illustration Master Class." Sheesh!

  2. This is just so great, but what would I expect from you two. What a line-up for Spectrum Live. And that's just a start? Holy crap!

  3. Its pretty awesome the things you guys do for the fantasy art community.

  4. Very nice. Is it limited to just U.S. citizens, or can anyone who speaks English apply?

  5. This is an absolutely fantastic idea! An amazing opportunity, thank you for the initiative and opportunity!

  6. CES,

    It doesn't matter where the artists are from, whether from the U.S. or abroad. The only caveat, of course, will be that whomever gets the scholarship will be responsible for their own transportation to the workshop and back home. A bed and meals during the IMC are included as part of the workshop.

  7. This is absolutely amazing! Ive been putting pennies in a jar for this class for years and I think Ive almost got the materials list covered ; )

    Seriously though, I was just reading Gregory Manchess's spectrum post and he said

    'every time I drop a bean in a cup I feel like Im changing someones career'.

    This is whole lot of beans!

  8. That´s an absolutely amazing opportunity!!!

    And I will dedicate myself this entailer year to make a good portfolio so I could have a chance to win that.

    You guys are amazing!!



  9. Wow. Just wow... this is absolutely amazing. Thank you both for being so incredibly generous and supportive of the art community!

  10. Very very cool! :) My thanks for thinking this up.

  11. It says a lot about you guys that you are entertaining this idea...that you are kind and thoughtful and care about illustration and the future of the industry. It would be a dream come true for me to attend the master class, which I would never be able to afford on my own these days, and I'm sure many other art students and recent grads feel the same way. =)

  12. This is fabulous news! I actually recently e-mailed Rebecca expressing my interest in attending the Master Class but not having access to funds wondering if there was some sort of scholarship or installment plan for the monetarily challenged. Since I'm reworking my portfolio for IlluxCon this year, it seems I have extra motivation to create amazing work to be considered for this great opportunity! Thanks!

  13. Oh, I'm in tears right now... what a sweet idea. My mom was also so encouraging to all her children & an artist in her own right. I'm endlessly grateful for her example & her enthusiasm. Luckily she is still with us, & I'm very sorry about your mom, but it's wonderful to think of her legacy passing forward this way. What a great tribute.

  14. this is like the eleventh time when I hear a lot of many good things about Illustration Master Class, and every time I heard things about it, they convince me

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