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Old 04-24-2013, 01:20 PM   #101 (permalink)
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Remember one thing. The artists who talk most often on message boards are the odd ducks of the bunch. They do not speak for the majority. They speak mostly just to hear themselves speak. It helps them feel important!

Glad you added "most often." I've done only two sketch card gigs: Mars Attacks Heritage and Star Wars Galactic Files Series 1.

While I am an artist, I've been a fan and collector of trading cards since 1962, when I discovered both the original Mars Attacks cards and the Civil War News trading cards in quick succession. I probably bought some of every non-sports trading card set released during the 1960s, and even a couple of series during the 1970s. But few of my 1960s aquisitions survived into the 1970s, and those that did were sold off at minicons and such.

That said, since then I've replaced some card sets, or samplings of card sets, either through the purchase of reprints, or the purchase of low-grade originals.

I still have probably as much fun enjoying card sets today as I did 50 years ago, and I don't really get all that caught up in the hardcore dealer stuff. I buy what I want at a price I feel comfortable with, and that seems to work just fine -- for me.

And actually, I thought I'd be done doing sketch cards, but the new Star Wars Galactic Files Series 2 set will give me the opportunity to do some of the card ideas I ran out of blanks for the first time around.
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Old 04-24-2013, 01:57 PM   #102 (permalink)
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I noticed this as I was considering buying a few sketch cards for fun as I normally do not.

However, there appears to be a severe FLOOD of sketch cards; feels like anybody that has any remote ability to draw can start their own card company with the sketch cards being the hit.

I ultimately decided NOT to pursue any sketch cards because of over production (and observing, at least in my opinion, more sub-par sketches than anything else).

I love popping up on the nonsport forums and seeing all these brand new cards being produced....but not enough to impress me.

I think value holds steady, or at least has the ability to hold steady, when they are from a set that is popular with the general population (walking dead as an example). But everything else? Meh.

Next thing you know, they'll be a set of sketch cards for cars, airplanes, birds, you name it.
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Old 04-24-2013, 01:59 PM   #103 (permalink)
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Well just like any other hobby, why can't bird watchers and car guys have sketch cards? Who's to say there is an exclusivity in comics and sci-fi and some sports?
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Old 04-24-2013, 02:15 PM   #104 (permalink)
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Well just like any other hobby, why can't bird watchers and car guys have sketch cards? Who's to say there is an exclusivity in comics and sci-fi and some sports?
Not saying there isn't - and bird watchers and car guys SHOULD have their own cards if they want.

I'm just saying from my personal stand point, there seems to be an influx of people doing sketches, thereby driving some price points down. Also, some of the sketches are ....well...CRAP.

I'm not a bird guy, but if a set came out in which the sketch cards were done in the style that Audobon did them, then I'd be interested because they would be beautiful. Some artists are better than others and they do a favor to their industry by making it better while other artists produce stuff that makes it seem like a chore and a pain for them to do.
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Old 04-24-2013, 02:25 PM   #105 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by wickedliquids View Post
I noticed this as I was considering buying a few sketch cards for fun as I normally do not.

However, there appears to be a severe FLOOD of sketch cards; feels like anybody that has any remote ability to draw can start their own card company with the sketch cards being the hit.

I ultimately decided NOT to pursue any sketch cards because of over production (and observing, at least in my opinion, more sub-par sketches than anything else).

I love popping up on the nonsport forums and seeing all these brand new cards being produced....but not enough to impress me.

I think value holds steady, or at least has the ability to hold steady, when they are from a set that is popular with the general population (walking dead as an example). But everything else? Meh.

Next thing you know, they'll be a set of sketch cards for cars, airplanes, birds, you name it.
I find it a little ironic that you say this with a Goodwin Champions card as your avatar, which (for those who don't know) is a UD product with a mix of sports and non-sports cards including the Entomology bug set and space rock cards

Look, like any other part of the hobby, there's better sketches and some below par sketches. Over-production is limited IMO to the comic-licensed products. The niche products actually sell out regularly and are generally enjoyed by the people who buy them, so I think it would be wrong to consider evidence of those sets as proof that there are too many sketch cards. And over-production in the comic cards is nothing compared to the same in sports cards.

Ultimately, though, if you feel most sketch cards suck, then I'd suggest the failure may be in your appreciation for the artwork. There are some that do suck, but it's not most. In fact the overall quality of the work on sketch cards is one reason why I happily collect them now after 25 years of collecting sports cards.
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Old 04-24-2013, 05:09 PM   #106 (permalink)
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Not saying there isn't - and bird watchers and car guys SHOULD have their own cards if they want.

I'm just saying from my personal stand point, there seems to be an influx of people doing sketches, thereby driving some price points down. Also, some of the sketches are ....well...CRAP.

I'm not a bird guy, but if a set came out in which the sketch cards were done in the style that Audobon did them, then I'd be interested because they would be beautiful. Some artists are better than others and they do a favor to their industry by making it better while other artists produce stuff that makes it seem like a chore and a pain for them to do.
Well unfortunately an artists samples may not point out quality under deadline or quality at smaller scales so even a very good artist may muck up a few cards.
It is then up to the company to either delay and get more artists on the set to cover the bad cards or cut production or carry on and hope someone will appreciate the effort.
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Old 04-24-2013, 05:27 PM   #107 (permalink)
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I find it a little ironic that you say this with a Goodwin Champions card as your avatar, which (for those who don't know) is a UD product with a mix of sports and non-sports cards including the Entomology bug set and space rock cards
Uh oh, this thread's been Goodwinned.
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Old 04-24-2013, 05:28 PM   #108 (permalink)
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you would think based on how little they pay you guys that they would arrange for significantly more sketches than they need for the run. they can always do hot boxes or include extras in the next release (we have scene quite a few IM2 sketch cards pop up in later releases)
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Old 04-25-2013, 09:37 AM   #109 (permalink)
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I find it mildly inaccurate to blame the card companies about that:

Images of Upcomig Comic movies
Go ask the next 50 random people you see on the street if they spent any money on trading cards in 2012, and then ask the same 50 people if the saw The Avengers in 2012. This is comparing apples to oranges. Card companies should know their customer base better if this is the reason they are intentionally over-saturating the market.

I'm a buyer and a collector, so this market is great for me. I don't touch most comic based sets (except TWD comic set) because honestly there is just too much to keep up with.
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Old 04-25-2013, 10:23 AM   #110 (permalink)
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Go ask the next 50 random people you see on the street if they spent any money on trading cards in 2012, and then ask the same 50 people if the saw The Avengers in 2012.
I would argue that the latter largely influences the former and that had there been no resurgence of superhero movies there would be far less card sales.

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This is comparing apples to oranges.
Really? Are you saying it's coincidental that there's an Iron Man 3 movie and then a given collector buys cases that feature sketches and patches from that very movie? I fail to see how saying that "billion dollar blockbusters drive card sales" is comparing apples to oranges.

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Card companies should know their customer base better if this is the reason they are intentionally over-saturating the market.
You are only looking at half of the picture. On one hand you have the card companies, on the other hand you have the licensers of said material. Are you arguing that card companies and the license holders should refrain from making an Iron Man 3 set because they've already saturated the market with IM1 & IM2 sketches? It's just illogical and is very clearly an opportunity presented and driven by Hollywood and license holders.

Last edited by eldavojohn; 04-25-2013 at 10:27 AM. Reason: typo
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Old 04-25-2013, 10:32 AM   #111 (permalink)
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you would think based on how little they pay you guys that they would arrange for significantly more sketches than they need for the run. they can always do hot boxes or include extras in the next release (we have scene quite a few IM2 sketch cards pop up in later releases)
What's "significantly more", though? Somewhere between 25-50 artists dropped out of one of my very first sets, causing the release date to be pushed back multiple times despite the AD thinking he had a bit of a cushion. Even at an average of 25 cards per, that's a lot of cards. Then with the licensed products you have to figure in rejections, which can be pretty arbitrary sometimes. Pepper Potts with freckles, Wolverine with a cigar, word bubbles, Vampirella with her fingers in her mouth... to seguey topics, there are reasons you get a lot of boring, safe, template-based cards of the same characters over and over When you get APs for doing multiples of ten, for instance, one rejection means four APs for forty nine cards rather than five for fifty. That one risky card you attempted just cost you a hundred dollars. Ouch.
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Old 04-25-2013, 10:35 AM   #112 (permalink)
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What's "significantly more", though? Somewhere between 25-50 artists dropped out of one of my very first sets, causing the release date to be pushed back multiple times despite the AD thinking he had a bit of a cushion. Even at an average of 25 cards per, that's a lot of cards. Then with the licensed products you have to figure in rejections, which can be pretty arbitrary sometimes. Pepper Potts with freckles, Wolverine with a cigar, word bubbles, Vampirella with her fingers in her mouth... to seguey topics, there are reasons you get a lot of boring, safe, template-based cards of the same characters over and over When you get APs for doing multiples of ten, for instance, one rejection means four APs for forty nine cards rather than five for fifty. That one risky card you attempted just cost you a hundred dollars. Ouch.
That's a great point about going with safe cards to ensure they get packed out and you get the right AP allotment.

I'm really moving towards the small releases and PSCs now just because I find the artwork so much more interesting.
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Old 04-25-2013, 11:22 AM   #113 (permalink)
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To take some of the steam away from the companies i think ya'll should pay as much for a PSC as you would a similar authentic license card. This way the artists don't have to rely on cranking out subpar or safe cards just to make a certain AP count. Would not only make the PS's and AP's worth more but the pack cards would be worth more as there would be better quality cards and less of them. Sure you'll have guys who will do quite a few cards and act like fillers but i believe it could work out for the best.
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Old 04-25-2013, 12:43 PM   #114 (permalink)
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amber - great points, as usual. i'm pretty surprised to hear such a high drop out rate... even if there were 200 artists given cards for the set (which is pretty above average for most releases), 25 is over a 10% drop out rate! that is quite a lot.

justice - i just can't afford to pay $150 for a PSC
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Old 04-25-2013, 12:49 PM   #115 (permalink)
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$150 for a PSC
Official inserted cards will always rightfully be worth more, because of the chase.

The companies that pay for the licenses deserve to get the biggest chunk of the profit, even though the artists should be paid more per card.

Meghan Hetrick's A-Z project is a good example of the best of both worlds, and she has worked really hard to deserve her status and value.
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Old 04-25-2013, 12:55 PM   #116 (permalink)
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amber - great points, as usual. i'm pretty surprised to hear such a high drop out rate... even if there were 200 artists given cards for the set (which is pretty above average for most releases), 25 is over a 10% drop out rate! that is quite a lot.
Yeah, biting off more than you can chew happens with new artists for sets as well as commissions. Some don't take it seriously, some don't like the card stock or the format. And the smaller companies have the added issue of getting dropped if established artists get invited to more prestigious (read: comic) sets they'd rather be doing. And life issues... I actually pushed through and finished my sets when my mom died, because it was my first break, but I'm not sure I could do that again at this point.

Anyway, I doubt the dropout rate is quite that high for most sets, but I can definitely say that deadlines have been pushed back due to significant numbers of late artists on more than half of the sets I've been on. Some companies, I have a hard time keeping on task for the original due date because an extension is pretty much a given. I try not to let myself get away with that, though
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Old 04-25-2013, 01:27 PM   #117 (permalink)
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amber - great points, as usual. i'm pretty surprised to hear such a high drop out rate... even if there were 200 artists given cards for the set (which is pretty above average for most releases), 25 is over a 10% drop out rate! that is quite a lot.

justice - i just can't afford to pay $150 for a PSC
You do know I was making a joke.
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Old 04-25-2013, 06:10 PM   #118 (permalink)
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You do know I was making a joke.
No I didn't, but only because I've heard that opinion stated many times before. The funny thing is it just doesn't make sense. Look at it this way (which is the way I look at it, because I'm a nerd)

Artist A charges $20 for a PSC or $150 for an AP. In order to get that AP, the artist must do 10 pack cards for $2 each.

1 PSC = $20
11 Licensed cards = 10($2)+$150 = $170, an average of $15.46 per card.

In this scenario the artist is making more by doing PSCs for $20 than APs for $150. I understand that this is built on assumptions that may be inaccurate, specifically that you get 1 AP for 10 pack cards and get paid $2 per pack card. Obviously if the AP:Pack card ratio goes down and the price/pack card goes up then things flip around.

Anyway, I can convince myself to pay more for an AP because I know the artist had to do a lot of cheap work to get that card. I can't convince myself to pay $100 for a PSC when I know that same artist is willing to do pack cards for $2-$5 each. Just seems like they are scamming me. I'd happily buy 20 PSCs if that got the price down to $5 each
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Old 04-25-2013, 06:49 PM   #119 (permalink)
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Heh only the real small companies pay 2 bucks and up till recent so did UD, but I believe they pay like everyone else at 5 bucks a card.
One of the reasons that price will drop for any artist is that most small companies only want like 25-35 cards max so even the top artists will do like 5 or 6 small companies to make up for not having a large company wen they need em. UD does 3-4 sketch card sets and RH does 2-3 and Crypt does 3 or 4. Only those companies want you to do more than 50 cards. By doing so many smaller unknown or completely newly created sets, these top artists water down their saleability. If you can get a Gebe or Perna for 150 or less on a smaller set why would you then pay 350 and up for the marvel sets they do? It gets crazy
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Old 04-25-2013, 07:13 PM   #120 (permalink)
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I totally agree. One of the problems though is that its slim pickin's to find a smaller set that I like. Spellcasters I was excited about and ended up able to get only a couple of packs. Space didn't interest me at all. I passed on Blood & Glory because I was saving my $$ for Spellcasters Most everything else is just nekkid chicks. I'd rather see real ones. But yes, I would pick up a Perna from Spellcasters for 1/3 or less a Marvel card no problem.
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Old 04-26-2013, 01:35 AM   #121 (permalink)
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Transformers has a set coming out soon with sketches!!!
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Old 04-28-2013, 06:09 PM   #122 (permalink)
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Just curious since we've had several new products drop since most of this discussion took place: anyone have some thoughts after seeing recent sales?

I was following MGB for a little while, but not lately and I haven't paid much attention to the Superman or Iron Man sketch sales.

Perna Studio put out Spellcasters in the past week which I really think has some awesome work and I haven't see anyone say anything bad about the quality of the sketches, but obviously that's a tiny run compared to the big products.

And the above mentioned Transformers looks to have some nice sketches in it as well.

I think the general themes we identified earlier that there's some buyer fatigue with the comic products but the niche products generate some solid (but limited) interest still holds, but feel free to disagree.
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Old 04-28-2013, 06:52 PM   #123 (permalink)
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It's too much all at the same time and unfortunately the Comics sets mirror each other. UD put out an Avengers set Rittenhouse did as well. Marvel premier Marvels greatest Battles. Yadda yadda yadda. Too much sameness.
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Old 04-28-2013, 07:04 PM   #124 (permalink)
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I haven't really paid much attention to sales of the new products. But I think the Spellcasters sketches will sell really well, since a lot of collectors like the Perna's products. I get the feeling that the artists like them as well, and it looks like some artists try to pick up sketches from other artists, which also helps their prices. One thing I will mention, even though the Spellcasters print run is small compared to any of the Cryptozoic products, the way they are sold means that 95% of the print run will be opened in the first couple of weeks. So I think you will see just as many Spellcasters sketches for sale as Superman sketches, since the Cryptozoic products sell much more slowly. You see the same thing with most of the other small niche products.

In a way I think that is good, even though Cryptozoic has put out 3 DC sketch products already, we aren't getting flooded with sketches from them. I think that has also helped out prices somewhat... even though the high end prices haven't been that good for Cryptozoic products, the low to mid end has been pretty strong. I opened up 1 case of Batman, and I've sold about 2/3 of the sketches, and had pretty good luck selling the low to mid end ones for $20-30. That's a lot better than the $10-15 a lot of the Rittenhouse Marvel sketches get. Hopefully the Superman sketches will sell as well.
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Old 04-28-2013, 08:00 PM   #125 (permalink)
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Iron Man 3

I don't think the Iron Man 3 sketches have been doing well. First of all, there have been very few "stand out" sketches so far. What I have seen very much skews towards average. What has sold so far has been pretty low, but there are a ton of auctions ending tonight so I guess we'll see where things really net out. Personally, I think my best sketch was a George Davis leftover from IM2 that I got as a bonus.

The good thing about Iron Man 3 is that the set isn't "sketch driven" like the Rittenhouse and Cryptozoic products. There are 4 levels of costume cards. The single costume cards (for sure, maybe the others also) have short prints and swatch variations. There is a fairly large acetate chase set that falls less than 1/box. There are only 4 actor autos but their are 2 variations of each one and additionally there are 2 actor auto/costume cards. Then there are the comic writer autos. Autos fall 4/case, 2 actor and 2 comic. Lets not forget printing plates and oh, apparently there is a super rare patch card. Haven't seen one pop up yet but UD mentioned it in one of their articles. The hobby boxes have an extremely sweet parallel set - not just a silly different colored border. There is also a retail parallel set that falls 1/18 packs, rumored to possibly be the same as the hobby parallel set but not yet confirmed. The retail fat packs will have an exclusive sticker set, 2 stickers/fat pack.

So the IM3 set has a lot to chase besides sketches, making the relative mediocrity of the sketches a little less significant than it would be for one of the other sets. If you are just after sketches, breaking Iron Man 3 was probably isn't for you.

Oh yeah, there has been at least 1 confirmed hot box which contained 24 acetate cards. You know the idea of hot boxes will help sell some boxes Rumor has it that there are also hot boxes in MGB.

Spellcasters

Well, spellcasters is awesome. Its not really a fair comparison to an RA, UD, or Crypto set. Only top-of-the-line artists are invited into a set like spellcasters. It is expected that every pack contains a hit, and at under $30 a pack, it was a great buy if you were able to get it. Easy money for a dealer. No possibility of losing or breaking even. Sucks that so many 'new' collectors got shut out so that old collectors and dealers could get 40-60 packs. What? You are tired of hearing me cry? Sorry 'bout that.
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