Resident Artist From Elizabeth Honored At Festive Hollywood Gala

ELIZABETH– Olivia Pelaez from Elizabeth, was honored at the 26th Annual L. Ron Hubbard Achievement awards at the famed Hollywood Roosevelt Hotel, in the very room the first Academy Awards were held.

The annual event celebrated the winners in the L. Ron Hubbard Writers and Illustrators of the Future Contests before a packed hall—including celebrities Martin Kove (Karate Kid trilogy), Lee Purcell (NBC TV series “Persons Unknown”), Nancy Cartwright (the voice of Bart Simpson), Marisol Nichols (ABC TV series “The Gates”) and Josh Robert Thompson (voice of Craig Ferguson’s robot co-host on “The Late Late Show”)—and thousands more who were logged on to watch the event as it streamed live. The night’s keynote speaker was June Scobee Rodgers, Founding Chairman of the Challenger Center for Space Education.


The event celebrated the annual winners in the L. Ron Hubbard Writers and Illustrators of the Future Contests, where Olivia was one of the twelve winners, making it further than some several thousand others who entered the international competition, and where she saw her winning illustration published in the bestselling Science Fiction anthology series – L. Ron Hubbard Presents Writers of the Future Volume XXVI soon available in bookstores across the US.

Alongside Pelaez were winners flown in from afar as Australia, Ireland, Russia, Canada and across the USA who were treated to week long workshops taught by contest judges.

Pelaez is a comic book artist, illustrator, knitter and loves to crochet. She started drawing at a very young age. When in middle school, she picked up watercolors but soon got frustrated with them and decided it would be easier to teach herself how to use oil paints. Eventually, she would go back to watercolors and that would be her preferred medium to work in along with a sable brush and a bottle of black ink.

She loved watching Bob Ross on television. In high school, she became focused on working as an illustrator, which is when she first entered the Illustrators of the Future Contest. Soon she began to read comic books. That led her to complete a pre-college course at the School of Visual Arts for cartooning in her junior year. She has since graduated from the School of Visual Arts with honors.

She’s had her artwork on display in the college’s art galleries along with being published in their Portfolio 29 book (a collection of the best illustrations for her graduating year) and in their Cartooning Portfolio Magazine (a collection of the best comics). For a short time, she worked as a coloring assistant for a set of Avengers trading cards. She has published comics in a variety of comic anthologies. Her comics have even been published in Dutch. Her inspirations include Kelley Jones, Jerome Opena and Guy Davis. Regardless of art styles, what always attracts her is a good sense of storytelling. Every week, Pelaez co-hosts a comic’s podcast, “The Verbal Mosh,” with her fiancé. Pelaez is currently in the process of completing her first graphic novel.

Each writing and illustrating contest winner was presented their trophy by contest judges at the ceremony and combined cash prizes and royalties of over $30,000, and their story published in the L. Ron Hubbard Writers of the Future Volume XXVI.

The intensive mentoring process has proven very successful. Past winners of the Writing and Illustrating Contests have had over 700 novels, 3,000 short stories and tens of thousands of illustrations published selling an impressive 31,000,000 books. The Contests were initiated by L. Ron Hubbard in 1983 shortly after returning to the field of science fiction with his bestseller Battlefield Earth.

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Olivia Palaez of Elizabeth, at L. Ron Hubbard Awards Ceremony being presented with trophy from award winning actress Lee Purcell and international bestselling author Larry Niven.

Winning art - "Dryad" by Olivia Pelaez

Winning art - "Her Majesty" by Olivia Pelaez

Winning art - "Ship Wrecked" by Olivia Pelaez

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