Tuesday, August 29, 2006


I returned home late Monday night from Worldcon in Anaheim. It was a spectacular time. More on that very soon.

First, back to that word, "wow."

This is one of those occasions when that tiny word is the only thing that could remotely communicate how I feel. Last Thursday night at Worldcon in Anaheim, I won a Chesley Award. This time, it wasn't just A Chesley Award, but The Chesley Award for Artistic Achievement. I wasn't speechless because I know I said a few words when I accepted, but outside of thanking my fiancee Traci, I don't quite recall what those words were. I was so grateful at that moment, and I still am. The great Tom Kidd presented the award to me, and that made it all the sweeter. My fellow nominees in the category this year included John Jude Palencar, Real Musgrave, David Hardy, and the late Keith Parkinson.

In case you're wondering, this particular category is basically ASFA's acknowledgement of an artist's body of work over the previous calendar year. I grant you that the phrase "Artistic Achievement" makes some folks think "Lifetime Achievement" and I heard that comment a few times at Worldcon. I don't think I'm finished quite yet though...:)

In fact, this award only makes me want to work even harder. Take a look at the history of past winners in this particular category, and you'll see what I mean.

Like I said.


1985 Carl Lundgren
1986 No winner
1987 Alex Schomburg
1988 Frank Frazetta
1989 Don Maitz
1990 Don Maitz
1991 Michael Whelan
1992 James Gurney
1993 James Gurney
1994 Frank Kelly Freas
1995 Frank Frazetta
1996 Thomas Canty
1997 Don Maitz
1998 Vincent Di Fate
1999 Bob Eggleton
2000 Stephen Hickman
2001 Frank Kelly Freas
2002 Donato Giancola
2003 Tom Kidd
2004 Todd Lockwood
2005 Omar Rayyan
2006 John Picacio

Congrats to all of the nominees and winners this year! It was a stellar list of Chesley Award winners this year, and I'm incredibly proud to be amongst these individuals. (List courtesy of The Art Department, Irene Gallo's must-read blog.)

Hardcover: Stephan Martiniere for Elantris by Brandon Sanderson
Paperback: Tom Kidd for The Enchanter Completed edited by Harry Turtledove
Magazine: Donato Giancola for Prometheus on Asimov's
Interior: Brom for The Plucker by Brom
3D: James Christensen for Sleeper Lost in Dreams
Unpublished Color: Charles Vess for Companions to the Moon
Unpublished Monochromatic: Paul Bielaczyc for Nightmare
Product: Justin Sweet production design for The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe
Gaming Related: Gabor Szikszai & Zoltan Boros for Blazing Archon, Magic The Gathering card for Ravnica: City of Guilds
Art Director: Irene Gallo
Contribution to ASFA: Julie Faith Rigby
Artistic Achievement: John Picacio


Blogger Dianora said...

Wow, congratulations! I'm so proud of you. Sorry I couldn't be there.

11:00 AM  
Blogger John Picacio said...

This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.

11:27 AM  
Blogger John Picacio said...

Weird. I replied, but it wasn't showing up in the Comment counter, even after I refreshed. So I'm trying this again....

I appreciate it. It was a pretty heavy moment.

You were certainly missed amongst the Posse over the course of the weekend. It was a high-octane, high-alcohol weekend. :)

11:41 AM  
Blogger Irene Gallo said...

Congrats, John! You've made a HUGE impact on the field in such a short time. (I know, I know, it doesn't feel short to _you_.) This award is well deserved...and I'm sure that your Hugo is just around the corner! :-)

Thanks for all your help at the WSFS meeting. You're reputation as a great artists and one that is strongly connected to the writers made a big difference there. I think we did some good.

12:42 PM  
Blogger Rene said...

Hey, John, Congrats on the award!!! I just heard about it over the weekend from your Mom. That is so awesome!!! I also heard about the Star Trek and Xmen stuff, pretty cool!!! Keep it up, Bro, I love showing off ur stuff to friends. Hope to see you soon. Later

2:30 PM  
Blogger John Picacio said...

Thanks, Irene. I really appreciate that. Big congrats to Donato on his Hugo. It was a long time coming, and as I said on your blog, it's a good day.

You did the lion's share of the work at the WSFS meeting, and I'm glad I was there to be a part of the effort. Shouts to Dave Seeley, Alan Beck, and Erik Gist for being there as well. We DID do some good. I don't know if any of the smofs will ever read this, but many thanks to them and all of the folks on the committee led by Ben Yalow. That was key.

4:29 PM  
Blogger John Picacio said...

Hey, Rene!

How's it going? Glad you found this place. Yeah, leave it to my mother to let everyone know. She's quick. :)

I'll probably see her today or tomorrow and show her the Chesley in person.

4:38 PM  
Blogger Charles Vess said...

Hey John,

Congratulations!! Love seeing your work and look forward to hanging out some down in Austin this November.


12:06 PM  
Blogger John Picacio said...

Thanks, Charles. We'll definitely spend some time together in Austin. Hopefully, we'll go have at least one good meal together while we're there. Congrats to you too on your Chesley for Best Color/Unpublished. THAT was one of those REALLY loaded categories....you, Donato, Bowers, Maitz, and O'Connor all had heavyweight material here....that was a beast. Congrats, man.

2:07 PM  
Blogger Arkady Roytman said...

Congrats John. You deserve it!!!

12:55 PM  
Blogger John Picacio said...

Thanks, Arkady. I really appreciate it. Hey, I wore my black Arkady t-shirt the other day, and two different folks asked me what it was. Stops traffic! :)

11:06 PM  
Blogger Arkady Roytman said...

hehe, now all i got to do is create some art that does the same :P

11:14 PM  

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