Well, I'm back home and recovering from a busy weekend helping my buddy Steve Lavigne celebrate the grand opening of his new store, "Shellback Artworks", in Wells, ME yesterday. Jeannine and I went up for the private pre-opening party on Friday night, which was fun, but the real work (for me, anyway) started on Saturday at noon, when I got to the store and found about a dozen or more people waiting with stuff to be signed.
Here's the banner which greeted us when we arrived.
I sat down at the table provided for me and for the next couple of hours didn't stop signing things ranging from comics to backing boards from blister-packed toys to t-shirts to plush TMNT dolls and a few things more. I only got a break around 2PM, and managed to snag a few pieces of the free pizza Steve and his wife Denise had provided for the people attending the opening.
I hadn't done a signing in quite a while, but it was a lot of fun, and I wish Steve the best of luck with this new venture. RIght now, the shelves are not completely full, but Steve has a lot more stuff on the way, and I don't doubt that in short order the place will be chock full of cool stuff -- art supplies, comics, and toys. Steve and Denise's lovely daughter Gracie has a display case in the store with some of her cool handmade jewelry, and I bought two matching necklaces for Jeannine and Emily.
It was pretty neat to see the way Steve arranged the big Turtle sculptures in the store -- now he just has to make sure people don't tug on them (they look solid, but they're actually pretty fragile).
I took some photos during the moments when I had a chance to get up and walk around. Unfortunately, I don't remember the names of some (well, most) of the folks in them -- sorry!
I think Denise took this photo of me with a young woman named Robin who was in the area working on a "Fight Cancer" event. I signed her poster as well as the sleeve of her t-shirt.
This cute couple posed for a photo op with Michelangelo and Donatello.
That's a happy Steve in the center right of this photo chatting with customers as Denise rings up their purchases.
Here Steve appears to be sketching a Turtle head for a couple of fans…
… one of whom also displayed some TMNT body art.
During a lull around 2PM, I tried to get some photos that I could put together into a panoramic view from where I was sitting during the signing, but I screwed it up, so the result is a little crude.
But it does give a fairly good view of the lower level of Shellback Artworks. Behind that yellow/orange wall in the background are the stairs going up to the second floor, where Steve currently has the gallery space and the first exhibit, which is a group of pieces from my collection of work I've done by myself or in collaboration with other artists.
And if you go around to the right side of that yellow/orange wall, there is a set of stairs leading down to the basement, where Steve will be holding his various art classes.
So if you're in the area, check it out! -- PL