Love art? Love comics? Well there’s an online auction coming up featuring pieces gleamed from all across the industry. The proceeds are to benefit The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society CT Chapter. Although the official start of the Comic Art Leukemia & Lymphoma Auction (CALL) started April 7th, the best is yet to come. You can preview all the donated art at CALLauction. Some of the top pieces include an original inked panel from "The Walking Dead" courtesy of Charlie Adlard, an original oil entitled “Red Tatt” by Brian Haberlin, and an original "Deadpool" production art by Adelso Corona. I spoke to the charity auction event coordinator, Todd Zavorskas about this unique event.
Allie Hanley: Tell me about this online charity event?
Todd Zavorskas: I am organizing the First Annual Comic Art Auction to benefit the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society CT Chapter through an eBay auction occurring now through the first week of May. My upstart, Zombie Leader, is sponsoring the event.
Allie: What does LLS do with donations and what's its mission?
Todd: LLS is the world's largest voluntary health agency dedicated to blood cancer. They work to eradicate blood cancers such as leukemia, lymphoma, Hodgkin's disease and myeloma. Leukemia is found in bone marrow and blood, lymphoma affects one’s lymphatic system, and myeloma affects your antibody production. The Society funds lifesaving blood cancer research around the world and provides free information and support services. Their priorities are to help blood cancer patients live better, longer lives.
Allie: I'm not really familiar with this blood cancer.
Todd: I read that every 4 minutes someone is diagnosed in the U.S; every 10 minutes someone dies from it. More than a million Americans have been affected by blood cancers, and it is the 10th most frequently occurring type of cancer in all races or ethnicities. Leukemia causes more deaths than any other cancer in children under the age of 20. I have been teaching middle school science for 20 years and have three boys under the age of 14. That is why I donate my time, effort, and skill to set to LLS.
Allie: What is Zombie Leader?
Todd: When I'm not infecting my viral followers, I am teaching Grade 8 science in Connecticut. I'm married with three boy walkers, all under the age of 13. My parents were antique collectors, so I am an avid collector of comics, autographs, and memorabilia by blood. Of course, I am a huge fan of "The Walking Dead" because it is a drama that is occurring during a zombie viral outbreak. I commissioned Eisner Award winner Glenn Fabry to design my logo. I love it.
Allie: How did you get interested in comic books?
Todd: The first comic book I remember getting was an "Avengers" copy while my father was stationed in Athens AFB, Greece. I remember distinctly "The Vision." Growing up, I always doodled superheroes, mostly Marvel. In the past few years, I rediscovered my love of comics. And my collection has started up once again.”
Allie: What inspired you to get involved with the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society CT Chapter?
Todd: My grandmother, Anne, passed away from Hodgkin’s Disease and my mentor’s son, Ryan, died of leukemia. Ryan had been in remission and passed at the age of 19. These personal experiences have motivated me to donate my time, and money to the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society CT Chapter. I have worked on their behalf now for over 20 years, and I was honored to be named their 2000 prestigious Unsung Hero Award as well as the 2005 Mid-Fairfield County American Red Cross Unsung Hero award for my charitable efforts. Over the past 20 years (pre-Zombie Leader), over $115,000 has been raised for LLS through events, donations, and auctions I have been involved with. I am hoping to raise several thousand dollars through the eBay CALL auction the first time out the gate.”
Allie: Wow, that's really impressive and you are surely going to hit your goal.
Todd: I have easily put in over 120 hours already to make this event a success. Time has included traveling to cons to collect art from talent, network with artists, design the CALL FB page, plan logistics of the eBay auction. In fact, I actually met Charlie Adlard, "The Walking Dead" artist, at New York Comic Con last fall. He kindly donated a signed, inked page from TWD #105. I have enjoyed getting to know some artists in person, through Facebook, Twitter, and email. Although eBay buyers may get a great deal on comic book art, the real winner of the auction is the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society. This is just such a worthy cause, and I don't mind putting in all of the hours to make it happen."
Allie: Since the auction is going on now, is it too late to get involved?
Todd: Go to the CALL FB auction page. The CALL page has over 525 followers, and I would love for that number to continue to grow, as that is when the big items will be unveiled. Then, check out the week-long eBay charity auctions have begun to benefit the Leukemia & Lymphoma Society CT Chapter (“zteam” seller). Zombie Leader is spreading Good Deeds One Bite at a Time, so spread the word and join the herd.”
Allie: How can one donate directly to LLS?
Todd: You can go to here, where you can make a donation directly from the site.
There are over 100 pieces of original art coming up for bid and since this is a new event, you just might be able to score a high-end comic piece of art for a good deal and all benefiting a great cause. It’s a win/win for all. Also, the Zombie Leader respectfully asks that you share this article with your friends, and the eBay charity auction link.