Today’s Spotlight is on a fantastic artist, musician, and Star Wars collector.
Ben AbuSaada, or KSGeekMan, is an artist in the Kansas City region who freelances and also sketches for trading card giants Topps and Upper Deck Entertainment. You can catch him at local comic cons for his art but he’s also got an amazing collection of Hot Toys, ArtFX, and Hasbro figures, as well as a passion for comic books!
I came across Ben’s page on Instagram a few years ago and absolutely loved his art style and diverse Star Wars collection – “Geek Man” indeed! And once I found out that he was a fellow musician as well… needless to say, I knew he had to get a proper #LesDudisSpotlight! So let’s check out some of KSGeekMan’s work and a short Q&A with Ben himself at the end of this Spotlight:
Topps Star Wars
Ben officially draws sketch cards for Topps for many of their recent Star Wars lines: A New Hope Black & White, Masterwork 2018, The Last Jedi, Journey To The Last Jedi, Galactic Files, and the list goes on…
One of the Facebook collectors pages asked artists what their favorite cards have been that they've sketched. Some of mine are coming on the soon to be released Masterworks set, in the meantime, here are a few of my current faves from previous sets. Thanks to all of you for continuing to follow this art journey! Swipe left for others. #starwars #sketchcards #topps #upperdeck #topps #rogueone #theforceawakens #revengeofthesith #obiwankenobi #kyloren
He also draws for the Topps Walking Dead line.
Upper Deck Cards
You can also see some of Ben’s recent work on Upper Deck’s Thor Ragnarok set. I think these cards look great in their own way and stand apart from Topps’ sketch cards. Check out this one he did of Odinson himself:
Prints, Commissions & Sketch Covers
You may be lucky enough to pull one of Ben’s cards in a pack. But if you can’t wait for that, you can always check out his Etsy store! There you might see a few AP’s (Artist Proof) but it’s also the best place to submit your commission request for a sketch card or comic book sketch cover… or to order yourself a Kansas City Comic Con Exclusive “Boba Fett Mandolorian Print” with remarque!
Hey friends! I'll be working on some Remarque sketches on these 11×17" Boba prints. If you'd like one you can place an order with me through direct message or on my Etsy (link in profile). $28 shipped in USA with sketch Remarque. $18 with no Remarque shipped. International friends shipping is more. #starwars #bobafett #instagramart
Just look at those possibilities!
My personal favorites are the ones I have in my own collection. One is a Rogue One K-2SO (non-Topps) B&W sketch card and the other is a 40th Anniversary Obi-Wan Kenobi sketch card.
Stories, Raffles & Giveaways
Lastly, Ben also runs all sorts of great deals across his social media platforms – from polls to giveaways to cheap raffles, you might find yourself gaining a few awesome pieces for your own collection! Vote for your favorite trilogy, score a free Black Series figure, or win a Hot Toys collectible for next to nothing!
And who knows? Maybe you’ll find that collectible you’ve been after for a year right on his Instagram store, @GeekFlagFly!
Let’s take a moment to get to know Ben!
Who or what inspired you to become an artist?
My grandfather was an artist, and my mom. Growing up, she always encouraged me in my creativity. She was great at inspiring me and pushing me to be better. More recently, artist Todd Aaron Smith befriended me and gave me tips and invested in my art journey. He’s a fantastic artist who worked on Batman The Animated Series in the 90’s.
Who is the biggest supporter of your work?
My wife. She has given me encouragement and freedom to pursue the side hustle, spending lots of evenings in the art studio.
What helps you get the creative juices flowing?
I like perusing fellow artists on YouTube, Instagram and other social media outlets. Just seeing what others are doing inspires me.
If you could pick just one project/piece that you’re most proud of, what would it be?
That would have to be some of the cards I did for the Topps Masterwork series. I explored some different mediums and was super pleased with the results.
When you’re not drawing, what do you like to do?
I love singing and playing guitar. Watching my three daughters with my wife doing their various hobbies (volleyball, singing and theater).
Could you share any advice for aspiring creators out there?
One thing I applied to myself, accept criticism. Be sure to keep your skin thick. Seek out and receive valuable input from people doing exactly what you aspire to do. Be humble, don’t think you have it all figured out, and definitely don’t act like you have it all figured out. Find those one or two voices that you can trust and let them give you feedback. When something isn’t working, pause and come back to it later with fresh eyes.
That’s amazing, Ben. Thanks so much for sharing!