Meet the Artist: Joe O'Hara
Joe O'Hara is a licensed Wheel of Time artist, with art featured in The Wheel of Time Companion as well as in Ta'veren Tees' popular Wheel of Time calendars. In 2012 he won the first-ever JordanCon Art Show Judge's Choice Award for his work "Wheel of Time Characters," an entire panel of 18 original Wheel of Time character portraits. While he has become recognized among fans for his amazing art as well as his Mat Cauthon cosplay, his true claim to notoriety is as one of the founders and instigators of the tWoTcast podcast. In 2014, he and the rest of the TWoTcast crew were toastmasters at JordanCon.
How long have you considered yourself an artist?
I’ve always felt I wanted to be one or that I was one on some level, but when I graduated with a fine arts degree I think I finally let myself say it on an official level.
How did you first discover art, or that you wanted to create art yourself?
My dad used to read me Batman comics when I was very young. So as soon as I could hold a pencil, I was copying what I saw in them and drawing my own.
Are you a fan of the Wheel of Time? If not, what is your favorite book or series?
No, I don’t really like it. (seriously?)
What do you see as the primary link between writing and art?
I think it is having to imagine what to put on the page. Authors and artists just do that in different ways.
What was the subject and title of the first piece of art you ever sold?
It was an untitled sketch of a bartender that I drew with both hands simultaneously when I was telling my friend I used to be ambidextrous as a kindergartner. The bartender heard me and demanded I draw her with both hands as a challenge. She paid me twenty dollars for it. There was probably one before that but that’s a good story. ;)
What's the one thing you most enjoy about attending conventions?
Having interesting conversations with complete strangers that you feel like you’ve known your entire life because of the vast amount of shared interests between you. That feeling is kind of amplified when you go to smaller convention like JordanCon because of its niche audience.