Sandbox Spotlight: CANDICE DAILEY, Artist

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THE CONVENTION COLLECTIVE: Thank you for joining us in the Spotlight, Candice! How did you get into art and why did you want to become an artist?

Candice Dailey: Thank you for inviting me! I have been drawing for as long as I can remember, but it didn’t occur to me that it could be a career until an amazing teacher guided me in that direction in middle school.

TCC: What was the first work you completed, where you stepped back and thought, “Yes, y’know what, I can do this for a living!”?

Candice: That is an insanely tough question. It’s pretty rare that I finish something and think “I’m a professional!”, it’s usually more like “Oh I hope this doesn’t suck!”. However, the first painting I finished and felt like everything went well from beginning to end and made me feel like I can do this full time is the Kylo Ren painting that I was able to get published through ACME Archives. That was the first time I felt confident in my skills as an artist and I think it shows.

TCC: Which artists inspire you? And they don’t have to be in the medium you work in, either…

Candice: My biggest inspiration is Todd Lockwood, his Drizzt covers quite literally changed how I look at art. Before that I thought you had to have work in galleries to be a successful artist, but his work made me realize that you can have the power to make someone pick up and buy something just because of how captivating the art is on the front. Right behind him are Dan dos Santos, Donato Giancola, Gregory Manchess, and Soey Milk.

TCC: Can you tell us your greatest fan moment, interacting with a personal hero of yours where you may have gone a little weak at the knees?

Candice: I was able to do an apprenticeship with Todd Lockwood in 2019 and I had trouble speaking the first couple classes.

TCC: What is your favorite fandom? Who is your favorite comic book character/movie/tv character?

Candice: My favorite fandom is The Legend of Zelda, very closely followed by Star Wars and Lord of the Rings. My favorite comic book character is Barry Allen as the Flash.

TCC: Outside of the ones you create for a living, what characters/stories do you like drawing the most in your spare time?

Candice: Whenever I have some time to draw just for me I like to draw my favorite Anime characters in my own style. It’s not a big seller but I like the freedom to be creative and reimage things.

TCC: What’s your working routine? Do you work regular set hours and days, keeping certain days free for personal time, or do you find you create any time the muse takes you?

Candice: I am a Stay at Home Mom so I only get to work after my kids go down to bed. I usually work from 8pm until I can’t stay up anymore. Sometimes I paint until 1 am.

TCC: When you’re creating, what do you use for background noise? Some artists use music or podcasts, some use a TV show that they just can listen to in the background. What do you use?

Candice: I usually watch something that won’t be distracting, something that I’ve seen a lot. My go to is The Office, but I also throw on The Last Airbender a lot or any period romance movie :).

TCC: What was the first comic con that you remember attending? And, indeed, what was the last?

Candice: The first comic con I ever went to was Planet Comicon way back in 2008 or 2009 just as an attendee. It’s crazy that I now have a table there every year!

TCC: What’s your favourite element of a comic convention? And which bits could you easily leave behind?

Candice: I love interacting with everyone. I am very social so it’s very easy for me to engage with the people who come up to my table. I would definitely leave behind the gatekeeping that happens. I am often quizzed by people to test if I am ACTUALLY a fan of something, and after speaking with a lot of other artists who attend cons it seems to be something that is very common with female artists and pretty non existent with male artists.

TCC: At a convention, when you’re not behind your table or doing the things you have to do at a con, which corner of the show would we find you in?

Candice: I love attending panels, and any table that has nerdy craft or clothing items!

TCC: With the lack of conventions, a lot of artists are taking commissions online and mailing them out to people – is this something you’re doing? 

Candice: It is something that I have done, but I am currently too busy with work to open my commissions up.

TCC: A lot of creatives are also taking to crowdfunding – such as Kickstarter and Indiegogo – to generate income from their work. What’re your thoughts on that?

Candice: I 100% support that route, if I am ever able to create an art book I would go the crowd funding route. It gives the creator complete control over the product and the profits for their hard work.

TCC: What projects have you recently finished? What are you working on at the moment, what projects are coming up that you can talk about? 

Candice: I have completed a lot of Star Wars sets for Topps that will be out later this year, and I have a handful of licensed Star Wars prints available through ACME Archives. It has been a great year so far and I have a couple more exciting things in the works, none of which I can reveal just yet.

TCC: How do you stay connected with fans? Do you use a mailing list or newsletters, are you active on social media?

Candice: I use social media to stay connected, mostly Facebook and Instagram

TCC: Where can people see an example of your art online and find out about your rates?  

Candice: I’m @TheDaileyDoodle on both Facebook and Instagram, I will post on those whenever my commissions open back up. I also have a website where you can view my professional portfolio at CandiceDailey.com 

TCC: Thanks, Candice, for your time! 

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