Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Three For The Office

I was a little bummed that I couldn't have added Stanley "Secret Weapon" Hudson to my "Scanton Hoops" mini-set.  The orientation of the image just wouldn't work with the 1980-81 Topps basketball layout.  I still wanted to make a card for Stanley so I decided to put it into a 1989-90 Fleer basketball inspired template.  I chose that particular  basketball design because I liked the idea of putting "Secret Weapon" under the border curl.

While I was making this card a couple other fun trading card ideas for The Office came to mind.  I'm surprised it took me this long to make a "Prison Mike" card.  That one skit is probably my favorite of the entire series.  I've certainly watched those four-and-a-half minutes more than any other scene. For this card I went to maybe my favorite template to use, the 1984 Topps baseball inspired design.  I love the vertical lettering and the inset head shot in the corner.  Classic stuff.  Making this card, for whatever reason, also gave me an inspiration to make an Andy Bernard card.  He went to Cornell ya know, ever heard of it?  I chose again to use the same 1984 design as with the "Prison Mike" card.

Friday, May 3, 2019


This picture of the Beastie Boys was on the cover of Rolling Stone magazine back in 1998. I still had Rolling Stone subscription back then and I remember thinking it was a very cool cover. This was the August issue right after the release of Hello Nasty which was an absolute monster when I was in high school.

 The retro look of this shot gave me a chance to recreate a funky ‘70s Topps design. After a little debate I went with a 1976-77 inspired design. The one big difference is the size. This card measure the standard trading card size; 2 ½” x 3 ½”. Whereas the 1976-77 Topps basketball tipped the scale at 3 ⅛” x 4 ¼”. I think that’s the biggest season set Topps made for any sport. Why did they make then that big? Not sure, maybe being cheeky with the fact that most basketball players are tall? I made it standard size because whenever I had any kind of oversized card they’d always get dinged up as they stuck out when put with normal size cards in your card binder or it an box or stack of cards.

Tuesday, April 30, 2019

Cindy Crawford II

I was pretty certain that when I made my Anna Nicole Smith Dream Girl card I was eventually going to use that design again; all it would take was the right babe in a nice black and white photo.  The time to re-up has come much sooner than later.

I've written before about my infatuation with Cindy Crawford in a previous post.  I ran across this particular image and instantly recognized it from the first Playboy magazine I ever bought.  I was 18 and it was a special edition on Cindy herself ....or it might have even been a compilation of celebrities that had graced the pages of Playboy magazine, either way I remember the purchase's circumstances very vividly.  I remember that even though I was of age to buy a nudie magazine I was still pretty red faced and embarrassed putting it on the counter.  I spotted it the day before but didn't have the guts to buy it.  This is pre-internet and I couldn't get the prospect of the glory of what was between those pages out of my head, so I went back to the party store at the corner of my street the very next day.  I waited until I was the only one in there and I sheepishly put it on the counter and tried to avoid eye contact with the shady dude behind the counter that used to keep my younger brother's change when he'd buy candy telling him "we'll call it even, boss".  He did give me my change and I hurriedly walked out holding the book with the cover pressed against my chest.  Lame, I know.  I didn't have that issue for long.  It was lost although I'd pretty sure a friend of mine that I guess didn't have the fortitude that I did to buy a copy from that store "borrowed" it without my permission never to return it - shady as hell, but hard to blame the guy.

Monday, April 29, 2019

The Monster Squad Redux

I've been messing with making cards from The Monster Squad for a little while now but never "officially" released them as one of my mini-sets.  I just get sidetracked sometimes.  There's a few movies I've made cards out of that should be a set by now but I get too excited to make new cards that I don't go and revisit those ones.

I got an extra urge to make this set when my son took an interest to the movie's VHS cover and wanted to watch it.  He literally watched it 4 times in a row.  Personally I was a little conflicted as to whether that made me an awesome dad because The Monster Squad rules or not so great because the language used by the Squad has aged like a glass a milk left in the hot summer sun.  I split the difference having a little chat about what things we were and were not allowed to repeat.  Hopefully he listens so I don't get taken aside by his teacher when picking him up from school.

After the movie marathon I decided to buckle down and get this mini-set done.  I switched it up a little bit from the original "prototype" cards I did, well they're prototypes now I guess.  Instead of the areas that are grey on the 1987-88 Fleer basketball I switched it up to a blue color drawing a little inspiration from the iconic Monster Squad movie poster.  I usually try to stick closely to the original design I'm using for the cards but I wanted these to have a little uniqueness knowing how beloved The Monster Squad is by my generation.

Tuesday, April 23, 2019

1979 Stickball Champ

I thought about this particular card quite some time ago but held off due to a personal technicality.  I like to create cards of different pop culture type things that Topps or the other card brands didn't make cards for back-in-the-day.  Technically Topps did have a couple of cards of Sly playing stickball with the neighborhood kids in their 1979 Rocky II card set.

I really got an itch to make this card so I reasoned with myself that Topps' card is a movie scene card and mine would be specifically a stickball card, almost like Rocky was in a stickball league or something.  That was enough convincing for me and I figured there is room for both my card and card number #3 and #4 from Topps' Rocky II set.

Most of the design for this card is pretty self explanatory.  I used the 1979 Topps baseball inspired template and the colors that went with the Phillies' player's cards that year.  I replaced the baseball illustration with that of a stickball ball and retro'd the older Topps logo with PCb. mock up.

Monday, April 22, 2019

Branon Molale

A friend of Brandon Molales happens to follow my Instagram page and he let Brandon know about the Blazer card I did of him as a part of the Dodgeball mini-set I made.  Brandon in turn reached out to me about getting a couple of copies for himself for which he was happy to autograph a couple copies for my personal collection in return.

Brandon  made a suggestion for a card of his character “Kevin Ward” the New York Jets quarterback from Mr. Deeds.  I loved it and was all over that suggestion.  Right away I knew I wanted to use a 1988 Topps football inspired design.  I’d used the League Leaders subset design for my Step Brothers and Dumb and Dumber cards but I’d yet to use the set’s base card design.  The base card really requires it to be a football card with a helmet to best make use of the design which I now had in the Kevin Ward card.

There was also an idea for a card that combines both Blazer and Kevin Ward.  Since I used the ‘88 Topps football for the Kevin Ward card I thought why not use the League Leaders template for the custom card for the two characters.

Brandon loved the cards and the inscriptions he put on my autographed copies were really kick ass.  Along with the cards Brandon also gifted me with some custom guitar picks.  That’s his passion, collecting stage used guitar picks.  I thought that was a very cool inclusion.

Monday, April 15, 2019

Yvonne Romain

I saw that Yvonne Romain signed through the mail so I wanted to make a card from The Curse of the
Werewolf to have signed.  I thought briefly about using a 1961 Topps baseball inspired design which is the year that movie was released.  That particular design is kind of plain and I wanted to try something a bit different, more like a modern autograph card. 

I had a design in mind from a Star Trek card I had happened upon, but I never saved the image.  I went back on eBay to try to find it but I just couldn't seem to find it again so I recreated the basic look from memory.  I'm not claiming to be a trading card Rain Man, but I was pretty pleased when I ironically found a card from the set again a couple of days after designing mine.  If you're curious it's a Star Trek 50th Anniversary card made by Rittenhouse Archives.

This next card is an image I found while looking for pictures for the Curse of the Werewolf card.  I wanted to also make a card from it.  I messed around with editing the image a bit until I got something that I thought looked pretty cool.