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Old 11-12-2013, 01:10 PM   #1601 (permalink)
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I hope Topps wouldn't be trying to dodge eBay fees
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Old 11-12-2013, 01:14 PM   #1602 (permalink)
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I hope Topps wouldn't be trying to dodge eBay fees
Maybe they gave them to Alvin for all of his hard work?
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Old 11-12-2013, 01:19 PM   #1603 (permalink)
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Looks like Topps pulled the painting auctions = "This listing was ended by the seller because the item is no longer available."
Damn, I wish I had the money to buy at least one before they ended. I'm betting they get re-listed for more.
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Old 11-12-2013, 01:29 PM   #1604 (permalink)
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Damn, I wish I had the money to buy at least one before they ended. I'm betting they get re-listed for more.
Yeah, was thinking the same (on both accounts). Either that or they made a private deal for the entire lot. I did put in an offer on the Mafia one - probably wasn't enough to get it anyways but ahh well.
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Old 11-12-2013, 01:45 PM   #1605 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by vandavisart View Post
But, I think it bears keeping in mind that one of the reasons sketch cards ARE collectible is that they are original pieces of art, and art tastes are varied. You might think there are too many head shots...someone else might be sick of comic book-styled sketches, and not enough painted cards...someone else might think there aren't enough full-color sketches or ultra-realistic rendering...
I think you said it all in your post. Head shots are easier than fully detailed scenes but tastes do vary. I don't see how you could ask an artist "Don't do as many head shots next time" though.

What's funny is that the only email I got from a card collector about one of my sketch cards (not counting anyone on these forums of course) was from a guy in Canada who pulled one of my head shot illos. He just wanted to say he enjoyed it and thanks for putting effort into the piece. It was a small gesture that meant a lot.....and I guess he enjoyed it.

Count me in for box toppers. That would be fun if they're practical next time.
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Old 11-12-2013, 01:46 PM   #1606 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by rmaheras View Post
Headshots can be very cool -- depending on the artist. I really like those day-glow cards!

Here's an example of one of my preliminary drawings (sorry about the scan -- it's actually a cell phone photo):

Thanks for sharing. Love seeing sketches.
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Old 11-12-2013, 02:14 PM   #1607 (permalink)
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Maybe they gave them to Alvin for all of his hard work?
Maybe he bought them all. He must make millions at Topps.
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Old 11-12-2013, 02:39 PM   #1608 (permalink)
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Thanks for sharing. Love seeing sketches.
I'm sort of weird when it comes to preliminary sketches. Sometimes I do them, and sometimes I don't. For Star Wars Galactic Files, Series 1, I did hardly any preliminary sketches at all.

I think the reason I did them for Mars Attacks is because I was creating scenes that didn't exist anywhere else, so I had to flesh things out first.
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Old 11-12-2013, 03:20 PM   #1609 (permalink)
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Maybe he bought them all. He must make millions at Topps.
They're going back up on Thursday. They were put out there by mistake early.
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Old 11-12-2013, 03:21 PM   #1610 (permalink)
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They're going back up on Thursday. They were put out there by mistake early.
Same price, or was that a mistake too?
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Old 11-12-2013, 03:41 PM   #1611 (permalink)
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Same price, or was that a mistake too?
No idea. Did you think the prices were off one way or the other?
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Old 11-12-2013, 03:49 PM   #1612 (permalink)
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I think they were reasonable. Expensive, but for what they are, one could provide the link to the wife as a possible Christmas gift
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Old 11-12-2013, 03:55 PM   #1613 (permalink)
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Awesome work Mark! And great studio pics!
...Thanx R.J.!!!...
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Old 11-12-2013, 03:57 PM   #1614 (permalink)
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...Thanx R.J.!...
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Old 11-12-2013, 03:59 PM   #1615 (permalink)
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Great stuff Mark.

Ted, you're leatest AP on eBay is in-friggin-tense!!!

One final comment on head shot sketches - the run of the mill collector would probably be THRILLED to pull a good head shot. It's only repetitive, when you look across the spectrum of all of the sketches produced. I still enjoy head shots, myself.
...Thanx Chris!...
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Old 11-12-2013, 04:03 PM   #1616 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by rmaheras View Post
Headshots can be very cool -- depending on the artist. I really like those day-glow cards!

Here's an example of one of my preliminary drawings (sorry about the scan -- it's actually a cell phone photo):

...Nice Russ!...I always like seeing the roughs!
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Old 11-12-2013, 04:08 PM   #1617 (permalink)
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Just got the approval from Topps on That MA AR so it's ben listed.
...Nice R.C.!!...( was wondering if you were going go see-through w/her outfit!...)
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Old 11-12-2013, 04:11 PM   #1618 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by alvin View Post
No idea. Did you think the prices were off one way or the other?
They were almost obtainable, which I though was a decent price. I wouldn't have been shocked if they were 2x the BIN price.

Of course some of us collect sketch cards because they are much easier to sneak by the misses...LOL

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Old 11-12-2013, 07:38 PM   #1619 (permalink)
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Anyone have a link to the closed painting auctions? I can't seem to find them ...
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Old 11-12-2013, 07:51 PM   #1620 (permalink)
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Anyone have a link to the closed painting auctions? I can't seem to find them ...

I couldn't find it either when looking at the Topps Vault closed listings. Is that who we are talking about?
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Old 11-12-2013, 07:59 PM   #1621 (permalink)
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Yes. You'll see them in a couple of days. They were the art for 4 of the Early Missions cards.
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Old 11-12-2013, 08:02 PM   #1622 (permalink)
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I know I'm a couple of days late to the conversation about what I would like to see in the next set, but I was enjoying a 3 day weekend, and thinking about what I wanted to write. So Alvin, here's my thoughts on the MA Invasion set, and what can be improved if there is another set:

Yes, I think there should be another set. However, I don't want to see it in the next 6 months; you don't want to turn off collectors by putting out too many sets too close together. I think there should be at least a year between sets, so late 2014 or early 2015 would be ideal, and that would hopefully let you give artists more time to do the sketch cards. Speaking of which, hopefully you can give the artists at least 2-4 weeks longer to work on the sketch cards as compared to this set.

Either boxed sets or regular packs/boxes will work. However, if you go to a boxed set with 2 hits, then the price needs to be lower than the current packs/boxes. Because if you aren't getting the extra inserts like the anatomy cards or extra gore/concept parallels, you aren't getting as much value for your money by just having a base set with 2 hits. Also, going with boxed sets will discourage big breakers, because a lot of the value they get from opening multiple cases is putting together parallel sets and master sets that you can't normally put together in a single case.

I also assume that one possible idea of boxed sets would be so that Topps could sell the sets on their website as an exclusive, like they have done with some sports sets. I think that would only work if the sets were fairly limited (like no more than 1000 numbered sets). Priced at $50 I think they would sell decently, especially if they were an update set to Invasion, and the card numbering started where Invasion stopped. If you did limit it to 1000 sets, then getting 1000 quality sketches would be easier than getting the ~5000 sketches it took for Invasion. Invite the top 40-50 artists from Invasion, and have them each do 20-25 sketches. In fact, if the sketch quality was pretty much guaranteed to be better by doing that, then I could see people paying a little more for a boxed set.

Talking about Invasion, I was pretty happy with everything that was done. The new art was great, the patches and medallions were very cool and collectible, and the sketch quality was improved compared to Heritage. I can really only think of a few minor things to improve the next set:

On sketch puzzles, if you want to do 50 four card puzzle loaded packs, ask 10 artists to do 5 puzzles each. To avoid other large puzzles being broken up, tell all of the other artists that they can only do two card puzzles (since it is not too difficult to complete a 2 card puzzle, but anything bigger than that is a headache), and limit them to using no more than 20% of their sketch cards for puzzles. That should mean that on average you would get a single puzzle sketch in a case, which I think is acceptable, especially if there is a good possibility that you will be able to complete it.

On the issue of Martian head sketches, I personally had no problem with the number of them in Invasion. Most cases had only 1 or 2 of them, which I found acceptable and somewhat expected based on the deadlines and subject material. I think the real issue was that a lot of the lower quality, quickly drawn sketches were almost exclusively of Martian heads. I don't think many collectors had an issue with pulling a nicely drawn, highly detailed Martian head sketch, but those get thrown collectively into the mix when people complain about the head sketches in general. As Topps continues to recruit new artists to replace the handful of artists who did lower quality work in Invasion, I think this issue will really mostly take care of itself.

On the patches and medallions, I really liked those, and think they should be done again in the next set. But you need all new ones, you can't recycle any of them from Invasion. I know a few collectors have complained about having some of them being short printed, but from a value standpoint, I am definitely in favor of having SP's. However, it would be nice if it was easier to know which ones were SP. If you have a 16 card set, maybe #1-10 could be commons, #11-15 could be SP, and #16 could be SSP.

On the parallels, the gold parallels needed to be different. Either machine number them, or have an entirely different logo. On the concept parallels, those were very cool, so keep them, but make them a little easier to pull, like 1 per box. Extra gore and graffiti were both cool additions, and I think they hit at the right ratio. The heritage parallels were very popular, but it would have been nice to get a complete set from a single case.

For what could be added to the next set as a cool redemption, I think having a handful of redemptions good for a comic sketch cover would be great. I know a lot of us don't have a chance to go to NYCC, but most of us would have loved to get one of the sketch covers that were given out there this year. So having a few redemptions and a chance at getting one would be great. You could make it even cooler, by making the sketch cover personalized... send in a picture of yourself with the redemption, and the artist would draw you into the cover. Surely I can't be the only person who thinks that being immortalized in a MA sketch of a Martian vaporizing me with a ray gun would be a blast! Since there are a handful of artists on the Topps payroll who do the Artists on Demand, hopefully it would be fairly simple to have a handful of these redemptions.

Anyways, sorry about the mega long post (I'm sure a lot of people will just skip reading it), hopefully you think there are some good ideas here!
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Old 11-12-2013, 08:08 PM   #1623 (permalink)
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How about something like redemption cards for oversized cards with things like actual asteroid or moon rocks. No idea how costly they are, but things like that would be fun to pull.
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Old 11-12-2013, 09:06 PM   #1624 (permalink)
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For what could be added to the next set as a cool redemption, I think having a handful of redemptions good for a comic sketch cover would be great. I know a lot of us don't have a chance to go to NYCC, but most of us would have loved to get one of the sketch covers that were given out there this year. So having a few redemptions and a chance at getting one would be great. You could make it even cooler, by making the sketch cover personalized... send in a picture of yourself with the redemption, and the artist would draw you into the cover. Surely I can't be the only person who thinks that being immortalized in a MA sketch of a Martian vaporizing me with a ray gun would be a blast! Since there are a handful of artists on the Topps payroll who do the Artists on Demand, hopefully it would be fairly simple to have a handful of these redemptions.
I didn't skip. FYI - Although I haven't seen a single one of them advertise it, I've inquired and the artists that participated in the NYCC raffle covers did receive blank covers in return. I know several artists still have covers available. Your personalized Mars Attacks cover could be just a PM away
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Old 11-12-2013, 09:24 PM   #1625 (permalink)
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I like the comment about asking a specific number of artists to do a specific number of puzzles, to fill a specific number of puzzle packs.

I don't know if you should limit how many puzzles an artist can do, within reason...

I see the main cause of folks getting SO MANY bad puzzle sketches to be bad planning...sorry to say, but if you send out a blanket request for artists to do puzzle sketches that will be sent out, INTACT, in special packs...you're GOING to get a lot of puzzles.

And, a lot of them will not follow the normal logic of puzzle cards (Each piece of a puzzle should stand on its own, if it's the only card a collector gets.)

Everyone knows this. It was just a bad timing and logistics issue, where many artists (including myself) made puzzles assuming they would stay together.

Now, if an artist goes OVERBOARD doing puzzles, and/or executes them badly, they should certainly be called on that by the editor, and possibly have some of those cards discarded.

But, I feel like that would be happening, anyway?

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