A group of passionate artists will be hosting the DV8 Art Walk this month as they work to promote the genre of pop culture throughout the High Desert.
The DV8 committee, which includes artists Joe and Jenna Sparks, Justin White and Cesar Flores, said the August 19 art walk will hopefully be the first of a monthly art event inside the historic Apple Valley Inn.
“We know there are many artists in the desert and surrounding areas who don’t have a place to showcase their work,” Flores, 39, told the Daily Press. “We want to organize this event for the artists and have something for the community to do once a month.”
Some of the artwork at the event will stray from the traditional, which means you’re unlikely to find paintings and drawings of puppies, flowers, farms and flowing rivers.
“I think you can generally classify art walk pieces as pop culture artwork from comics, video games, horror, and fantasy,” Flores said. “We think now is the perfect time to showcase this type of art.”
Flores, an aspiring comic artist who started taking art seriously in 2015, is one of many artists showcasing his work at the event.
Flores has done art sketch cards for Marvel, DC Comics, and Rick and Morty. He’s also teamed up with fellow artist and friend Nick Hernandez who shares a booth at the Frank and Son Collectible Show in Industry City, selling their work three times a week.
A regular visitor to comic book conventions, Flores works primarily with inks, watercolors and markers. He also plays with digital work.
Flores’ passion is working with comic book art and more recently has delved into anime and manga art.
Sparks is a graphite and ink-focused artist who began participating in local group shows at the Cocoon Art Gallery in Apple Valley.
Her work can also be seen on her mother’s refrigerator as well as at the Hive Gallery in Los Angeles.
At the gallery, Sparks found the courage and momentum to continue pursuing art. While her primary focus is on pop culture themed work, she also delves into exploring the macabre.
Sparks continues to work and seek to thrive within the artistic community, often traveling to conventions and continuing her journey as an artist.
She was recently awarded 4th place in the National Craft Month Fan Art Contest from Oregon-based Laika Studios.
Founded in 2005, LAIKA’s five films have all been nominated for Oscars and PGA Awards for Best Animated Feature.
Based in Apple Valley, White is an illustrator and graphic designer who started the independent design company Necrosapien Press in 2005.
Three years later, at a convention, White befriends the owner of Forbidden Panel, who is also an independent comic book publisher. After a long relationship with this company, he became its artistic director.
White was the artist for multiple issues of the company’s flagship title, ZKS: Zombie Kill Squad and wrote, drew and inked “The Mask of Devouring” for the company’s horror anthology Forbidden Tales.
White enjoys freelancing as well as organizing and attending arts events and various conventions.
Joe Sparks (Mace Morb)
Joe Sparks is a musician and artist of a wide range of mediums. Always a creative person, he came into his own when he expanded his endeavors into sculpture, metal and carpentry.
Sparks is most passionate about aural art these days, having directed, edited and produced multiple audio experiences as well as writing and composing music.
Rivera is a freelance illustrator and published comic artist. His work is a bit retro and explores old school horror/fantasy themes.
Rivera enjoys working in all mediums and has incorporated abstract and watercolor into her tattoo work.
The art walk is scheduled for 5-9 p.m. on August 19 at the Apple Valley Inn at 20601 Hwy. 18. Future art walks are scheduled on the third Friday of each month.