"Gosh, I love old comic books," says Austin artist Rob Ozborne. "I also love art and art history, and so my work is ... brush, pen, inks, [and] I always use dots -- halftone dots -- as a tip of the hat to the old comic book printing process."
That love of both high art and comics makes Ozborne a good fit for the "Artists' Alley" section of Wizard World Comic Con, and he'll be setting up shop there this weekend when Wizard World makes its yearly visit to Austin. It's a place where fans come to see his work, and he can let his geek flag fly as a fan as well.
"The thing is, when you go to Comic Con, there's so much cool stuff and there's so many really talented artists, and there's always some unique find and so, yeah, everybody's geeking out about all kinds of things... including me."
As a lifelong fan of comics and pop culture, Ozborne has developed a style that celebrates those interests and pairs them with his traditional art training and eye for graphic design.
"I am a big fan of Bob Ross, and so I've created this piece called 'The Treeinator.' Bob Ross is a machine like the Terminator -- he's come from the future to change the past, and he's made a happy accident," Ozborne says. "A Bob Ross/Terminator mashup. This has to be born, this has to happen. This is important work. Who else is going to do this?" he says with a laugh.
He's also done a series of works based around the "Jackalopezilla," a combination of the mythical jackalope and Japanese kaiju such as Godzilla. He'll have all of those prints available at the con, along with three book collections and a few original works as well.
One of the things that Ozborne loves about comic com appearances is the opportunity to meet and talk with people - both his fellow artists and the fans themselves. "I just love meeting people, and I love talking about art with anybody that comes around and is checking out the art in Artists' Alley," Ozborne says. "It's just really, really fun."