I knew how long it had been since I did one of these posts, but I also kinda didn’t know. Willfully, on some level. The “blahs” of the holiday season have largely seeped into my January and it’s all too easy to say “Yeah, I’m not completely up to doing that”.
I thought about breaking this up into two posts, but think of it instead as a jumbo pack, and you can linger or skip as you see fit.
I knew it had been a while since my last custom post because the first custom to share is from a series I’ve wrapped up a while ago on Twitter (#DailyTSRcustom). This is another of my mashups of my custom baseball designs and 1975 Topps, this time featuring 2019 MVP’s Mike Trout and Cody Bellinger.
These two customs were made this year with photos from 2019 and the original template.
In an effort to re-familiarize myself with the NHL, I’m playing fantasy hockey. As with most things related to my return to following the NHL, it’s not going as I would like – I’m in 7th place out of 12 – but I wanted to feature my best player at this point of the season, the New York Rangers’ Chris Kreider.
In the fantasy league draft he was my 14th pick (165th overall), so I’m going to give myself a little pat on the back for that accidental but astute scouting job.
I’m also forging ahead with my Seattle Kraken cards. I gotta tell you, I didn’t expect them to make it to the Stanley Cup finals like the Vegas Golden Knights had in their first season, but I also didn’t expect to suffer through a 9-game losing streak and an earlier 6-game streak.
That being said, here’s another one of my “super deluxe” Kraken customs… And they’re super deluxe because I make the backs as well as the front. Marcus Johansson is a former 1st round draft pick who signed a one-year contract after playing last season for Minnesota.
The final mashup of my customs and 1975 Topps features 2020 MVPs José Abreu and Freddie Freeman. Because of the truncated 2020 season this design was meant to be a quickie riff on 2009 Upper Deck and 1961 Topps, but it ended up being a fun design anyway.
Rachel Balkovec was recently named the manager of the Tampa Tarpons, the Yankees Low-A farm team. This will make her the first woman to manage an affiliated minor league team, so I faked up a Tarpons “Hot Stove” custom to commemorate the event.
Even though I took the Tarpons logo from a cap being sold online, it still looks superimposed, I guess that’s something I’ll have to work on in the future.
The mid-engine Maserati MC20 signals a return to racing for the historic Italian brand and is the first mid-engine car Maserati has developed in-house since the 1970s.
Holy crap, the Winter Olympics start in just over a week! For me that means a bit of international rules hockey (love the bigger rink) and a lot of curling. I’ve been planning to make curling customs for months, and here’s the first; it features John Shuster, whose men’s team will be defending their 2018 Gold Medal… something that still seems a bit odd to say about an American curling team.
Rachel Homan and John Morris were selected to represent Canada in Olympic Mixed Doubles. I don’t spend a lot of time following mixed doubles mainly because I enjoy watching both men’s and women’s curling and I have to draw the line somewhere.
And for anyone wondering whether I meant to make my design look like 1978-79 Topps/O-Pee-Chee Hockey, the answer is yes, emphatically YES! I quite blatantly ripped off the design because I thought it would work well. The little inset that I use to designate the country was originally used in the Topps set to designate the All-Stars. That’s a big part of why I’m using stars to fill in space on either side of the country name, although if anyone were to call me out on it, I’d say that they’re there because my set is called “Stars Of Curling”.
For what it’s worth, this isn’t intended to be an Olympics set, more of a “This Year In Curling” set. I’m trying to decide if I want to have “Highlights” cards to match the original hockey set, but who am I trying to kid, I’ll most likely break down and do it before the end of the Olympics.
The Texas Rangers signed SS Marcus Semien to a 7-year, $175M contract. I cheated a little on this one and used a closely-cropped press conference photo with a little faked-up jersey to cover some of his street clothes.
I’m still a bit sad that Betty White didn’t make it to her 100th birthday, but I’m glad she was with us as long as she was. This design is from my “Shlabotnik’s Snack Cakes” series.
The Bruins’ Brad Marchand was named the NHL 1st Star for the week of Jan. 10-16. He recorded multiple points in each of his 4 games – including a hat trick against the Habs – and tallied 6 goals and 4 assists for the week.
Just a little side note… I hadn’t realized that the Bruins changed their logo from what I was familiar with. It’s not a major change, but it’s not a change I see as being for the better.
Vicky Persinger will be going to her first Olympics as she and teammate Chris Plys represent the USA in mixed doubles curling (and yes, a Chris Plys custom will come before too long)
For no particular reason, a custom of Kate McKinnon…
The Mets surprised this Mets fan by signing Max Scherzer to a 3-year $130M deal… it’s going to be like Tom Glavine was where I have to keep reminding myself that I need to root *for* him now
Here’s another Kraken… Riley Sheahan scored the first pre-season goal in Kraken history, but that doesn’t get mentioned on the card because they went to press before any of that happened (*wink*)
For anyone who’s interested, I’ve created customs for most of the current roster, with the exception of a handful of players who have appeared in fewer than half of the 40 games the Kraken have played so far. I’m not stopping yet, but at some point I might get to a point of diminishing returns.
The other day I was listening to the out-of-print Joe Jackson album which was meant as a soundtrack to the 1984 movie “Mike’s Murder”. I saw the movie years ago, you’re not missing anything – plus most of the Joe Jackson music was minimized in the actual film. While the album itself is out of print, most of the songs are available as bonus tracks or on compilations. Anyway, this is more background than any actual point I’m making… The main thing is that I heard this song and thought I should feature it in my next customs post (except I’m using the superior live version of “Memphis” from an album which came out later in the 1980s)
The card of Shuster is pretty cool. A friend of mine plays against him in a curling league.
Accessibility is one of the things I love about curling… you’ll never see anything like “A friend of mine plays against Freddie Freeman in a baseball league”
…And thank you for the compliment, Greg!
The 2009 UD and 1961 Topps mashup works. And I’m a big fan of McKinnon’s work on SNL.
Hi: would like to know if your going to do any 2022 Winter Olympic Cards, Like to see Team Canada, Sarah Fillier and others from Women’s Hockey.. Do hope we might see something, your cards are Great..
First off, thanks for your kind words!
I’ve given a good amount of thought to doing Olympic hockey cards, I haven’t completely decided yet but knowing that someone is interested is always encouraging :-)