Conventions may be on hiatus, but vendors are still around! Who knows how long it will be before we get back to normal, hell we may never experience what was perceived as usual just a few months ago in our lifetime. Is it safe to say that we can say goodbye to photo ops, shaking hands with our favorite celebrities, meeting our vendors gone for good? Well, there is no way to say yes for sure. In the meantime, I felt this would be an excellent opportunity to introduce a popular vendor at conventions (one of my favorites), without further ado I would like you all to meet Mark Chavez of Disco Bloodbath Art.
Disco Bloodbath Art specializes in 3-D based one of a kind art pieces and photography. These pieces are stunning! We checked in with Mark, and he tells us how this all came about and a whole lot more. If you are interested in purchasing any art pieces, his Etsy shop is currently accepting orders.
iHorror: Where did the idea & inspiration of Disco Bloodbath art originate?
Mark Chavez: The very first inspiration I got was from McFarlane toys 3-D poster line (Released in 2006). That’s what sparked my interest initially. I loved their range of 3-D posters; I still have the entire collection. When they stopped making them, I decided I was going to figure out a way to do this for every movie I loved. The idea was swimming in my mind for a few years. It was around this time that I got hired by a pest control company and ran the termite baiting department, which put me face-to-face with clients every day. It was a great job, I had a company vehicle, and I would drive all over the city seeing clients in their homes. One of these clients happened to be the home of production designer/director Joe Alves. I didn’t know who he was I had no clue until I mentioned to him how much I loved his artwork, Joe is a fantastic artist and had these beautiful wooden sculpture that he made of mermaids for his daughter. During our conversation, he mentioned that he designed the shark in the movie Jaws and directed part three. I decided I was going to make my first 3-D art piece and have Joe sign it, so one day I surprised him with the one I did for Jaws 3D. He was blown away, he honestly was speechless and started stuttering when I gave it to him LOL I was extremely flattered, and it ignited something inside of me. I was determined to make my dream of being an artist a reality. About a year later, I picked up a new client in the Hollywood hills, two Artists that shared a house. Walking into their home was like walking into a fantastic art gallery. This one particular artist made stunning lightboxes. He would paint on glass and then have the image illuminated from behind, I ended up buying an art piece from him, and this inspired me even further. In 2014 I went to Monsterpalooza as I had many years before, but this time I had some art in-hand to get signed. The very first person I met was Cherie Currie from The Runaways, I made a 3-D art piece for her, and she signed two others for me. I then had Linda Blair (The Exorcist) and Linnea Quigley (Night of The Demons) sign my Savage Streets 3D art piece. I remember like it was yesterday Linda told me “I’ve seen a lot of cool stuff, but this is the coolest thing I’ve ever seen“ that was it for me, as an artist to have someone that you loved since you were a child say that to me meant everything. I then had William Katt (House) sign my art pieces for Carrie and The Last American hero; I remember him saying, and I quote,“ this is the coolest art I’ve ever seen.” PJ Soles (Halloween 1978) and Felisa Rose (Sleepaway Camp) all had similar reactions, and they all own an art piece of mind.
iH: How did creating these art pieces and the development of Disco Bloodbath change your life?
MC: I was very grateful, and it inspired me to swallow my fears and go for it. I debuted my art for the first time and Days of the Dead in Los Angeles in 2014, and I’ve never looked back. I quit my job as a termite manager in 2016 and decided to devote all my time to my art business. It took a good couple of years to establish a name, but luckily, I got to a point where I was able to live my dream and do my art full-time. These conventions, like Monsterpalooza and Midsummer Scream, became my livelihood, but I also developed a second family at these events with my customers and fellow vendors. I am lucky to have so many people support my art and purchase from me.
iH: What are your thoughts and feelings on the pandemic that has since canceled all events indefinitely? Most importantly what does this community mean to you?
MC: The canceling of these events due to the pandemic is a hard blow not only for myself but for all the other artists I know. These people depend on these shows as their livelihood. To me, these shows are not only about selling my art but, more importantly, about the community that I have found to love at these conventions. Every convention I did felt like a family reunion, I was excited to see my friends at every horror convention. The horror community became family to me. The love and support I have gotten over the years from my horror family are what made my artistic journey rewarding and fulfilling. It is such a sad reality that these conventions are having to cancel due to the pandemic, so I have decided to finally open my online store, something I was hesitant to do for many years. I always prided myself on only selling at conventions because I felt it was essential to support these events we all came to love. All of the organizers of these conventions go through a lot of trouble, time and expense to put these events together, I wanted to support them right back. Now that attending actual conventions won’t be an option anytime soon, I decided to open my online Etsy store. I prefer selling in person because I like people seeing the dimensionality of the art pieces in person; you can’t get the same result in a photo; it doesn’t translate well. However, tough times call for a shift in my business model, which is why now I’m selling online. My customers mean everything to me, and I’m happy I can still put a smile on their face with my art. It does mean the world to me.
Thank you so much, Mark, for telling us your story. We love and miss our vendors, celebrity guests, and our convention families! We are all in this together, stay safe, and, most importantly, #StayScary friends!