The Bram Stoker Bronze Bust project was a pinnacle in elevating these bust projects to the next level as I was able to work directly with the Estate of Bram Stoker, namely Dacre Stoker who provided endless encouragement, solid support and a mutually beneficial partnership in that this project allowed the Bram Stoker Estate to establish a trademark on Bram Stoker's likeness to protect the intellectual property for future use.
Returning on the project team was, of course, the great Graham Humphreys with his routinely brilliant project poster art, firmly grounding the look of the brand in the public consciousness for these bust project collaborations. Reber Clark also returned to generate project videos and music for terrific promotion. A joy on this particular project was getting to work with so many amazing Stoker scholars and authors such as David J. Skal, John Edgar Browning, Brian J. Showers, Les Klinger and so many more. Each of these gentlemen provided support in the form of many unseen photographs for the reference of the bust sculpture to addition to descriptions of what Stoker actually looked like which proved invaluable to my work.
Generous patrons such as Guillermo del Toro, Neil Gaiman, George R.R. and Parris Martin returned including many new donors and sponsors such as the Horror Writers Association, filmmaker Mick Garris, the Stoker family and several private donors who have been with me from the beginning.
While Lovecraft and Poe proved to be a tangible part of pop culture and an easier "sell", Stoker was not as two separate crowdfunding campaigns did not hit the goal despite the project team's best efforts. Still, the moral obligation was to finish the bust to honor those who did commit the funds to the project, so, doing what we could with the funds that were raised and the remainder of the funds shored up by me personally , Bram returned home to Dublin in 2018 as well as a second bust being unveiled at Seattle'
s Museum of Pop Culture also in 2018.
As Bram himself once intoned in his landmark work "Dracula"...."We learn from failure, not success!" While I don't consider this project a failure by any means, it was indeed a journey on the learning curve not to be lulled by early success in the crowdfunding arena. I'm extraordinarily proud of the hard work that the project team and I accomplished.
I'm greatly looking forward to my fellow Bram Stoker fans in Ireland enjoying the bust of their favorite son who penned a gothic classic to be honored for the enduring tradition of Irish storytelling as well as fans in the USA. It was my privilege to be a part of that.