Sunday, September 9, 2012

An Introduction: Custom baseball cards/Cards that were never made

Hello, this is my first blog, so a quick introduction first:

My name is TJ, and this blog will be dedicated to baseball cards. It will specifically focus on custom baseball cards, or in other words - cards that were never made, but should have been.

There are many reasons players were left out of sets: exclusive contracts with other companies, grudges against certain companies, off the field legal issues (anybody remember Ed Bouchee) or just plain old over-sights.

I call these custom cards "Digital Art" and I do create backs and print them out for myself, but I do  not offer them for sale - it's just for fun.

I collected cards as a kid in the 70's, became a weekend card dealer in the 80's and my father and I operated our own baseball card store for several years starting in 1989. The 1955 Topps set was always one of my favorites, I even had a complete set for a while, and it always bothered me that Mickey Mantle was not included in the set. In 1954 and 1955 Bowman had locked up Mickey in an exclusive contract that blocked Topps from issuing a card of the Mick.

One day (I think in 2004), I came across an artist rendering of a 1955 Topps Mantle on the internet, and something about it just clicked with me. I began developing my photo editing skills and experimenting with different paper types. I was hooked and have been creating custom baseball cards ever since.

Here is my first attempt; the previously mentioned 1955 Topps style Mickey Mantle:

I love this card format and have made several versions, here is one my more recent attempts:

Yes - I am a huge Yankee fan, but my digital artwork will give a fair amount of attention to the likes of Ted Williams, Stan Musial, Joe Jackson, etc, etc.

1954 Bowman Stan Musial

My favorite card era is the 50's, but I have done cards from as early as the T-206's right up to the 70's.

1909 T-206 Connie Mack

I have several hundred custom cards in my library and a large list of projects I plan to get around to, but I welcome suggestions or requests. I'm new to blogging and I am not sure yet how often I will post, but if this topic interests you, check out Bob Lemke's blog as well.

Up next, I will present some of my What-If cards in the 1955 Topps format...

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