Hi everybody! Welcome to another edition of Riiip with Brody The Kid! This month we will talk about some new products, MLB news, a National heads up and I got to interview Sketch Artist Zach Woolsey!!! Enjoy!
Topps Series 2 baseball is out! With 1 auto or relic per hobby box and 1 auto AND 2 relics per jumbo box, and because it’s not very expensive, this makes a great brand for everyone to collect! Look for the non-numbered rookie card of Vladimir Guerrero Jr. It is supposed to be a short print! Also, look for the insert set of Gary Vee, Top Entrepreneurs in Baseball! There are ten of these cards and there are versions with dual autos of the player and Gary Vee!
Also just released is the Topps Sticker Collection and it is Sick! You can collect the backs of the stickers too! The stickers are the same size as a baseball card now and there are over 200 stickers to collect. You get four stickers per pack and you can get a retail box that has 10 packs and a poster for $10! With all packs being $1, this is a great thing for us kids to collect.
Topps Finest has also come out. I love Finest because it has that really shiny Chrome finish. The autograph cards look really nice and are on card, not on stickers. The parallel versions of cards are also very nice and sharp looking. You can find Topps Finest at your Local Card Shop, but it is a little more expensive so maybe look for cards of your favorite team or player or try to get into a break!
In MLB, Pete Alonso and Jeff McNeil are on fire! Even though the Mets are struggling, Alonso is hitting around the .280 mark and has almost 30 home runs! McNeil is hitting over .340 and is getting on base a lot! These guys are both in the hunt for Rookie of the Year, so it will be fun to see how they finish the second half of the season.
Now I want to talk a little bit about The National Sports Collectors Convention! I am going to be there with some prizes for the kids and will be looking for any kids that want to be interviewed about being at The National. I have received a media credential for the show and will be the youngest person to ever get one and will be reporting from the show every day! I would love to interview more people from the hobby industry as well and will try to talk to as many as I can so you all can hear about it! I will also be doing some work for Sports Card Nation Podcast from the show so keep an eye on my social media to find out what is going on if you can’t be at the show! The National is coming up soon and I am stoked!
Do you know what sketch cards are? Sketch cards are trading cards that have a picture of an artist’s drawing or painting on them instead of a photograph. They look super cool and are fun to get and you get to see different looks of players, events or characters. Sometimes you can find versions autographed by the artist, there are 1/1’s and even die cut versions. Some brands that have sketch cards are Topps Living Set, Topps Gallery, Topps Star Wars Black and White, The Walking Dead, Stranger Things and a new one that my interview guest will mention!!! Lots of TV shows and movies that Topps does sets for will have sketch cards.
This month, I was able to interview Zach Woolsey, who is a sketch artist for Topps! Zach is an amazing artist. He mixes inks, paint, watercolors and pencils to do much of his art, and it really makes it stand out. He does drawings for sports, Star Wars, and entertainment as well as other things! Zach does this really cool thing where he will create a picture of a player, actor or singer and then have it signed by that person. Zach also collects cards, too! He is a really cool dude and I was very excited to be able to ask him a few questions. Here is the interview.
Your artwork is awesome! I wish I could draw like that! When did you realize you were good at art and how did you know you could make it your job?
Zach: “I’ve pretty much always loved to draw as long as I can remember. When I was about 7 or so, I would take my cousin’s records and draw the covers. That’s why I like the band KISS so much. LOL. I went to art school for a while but didn’t finish. Then the rapper Krizz Kaliko, and Violet Brown and Travis O’Guin of Strange Music had me help with a spider logo. I then decided to finish art school. I then went to the College of Western Idaho and Boise State University and graduated with 2 art degrees. I love art and love teaching kids’ schools when I’m invited. It’s what I’ve always known I was supposed to do.”
How did you start doing sketch card for Topps? And of all the ones you have done, do you have a favorite or two you can tell the readers about?
Zach: “I had been trying for awhile to get with Upper Deck actually and was looking to change up my art and do something different from the entertainment industry that I had been doing since 2004. So, in 2014, I stated doing more comics and comic cons, and kinda grew. I was referred and Topps gave me a call back and portfolio review. I was so excited to work on Star Wars and The Walking Dead products. My favorite has been my most recent…I love the challenge of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles I just finished and is to be released by Topps soon. They were so much fun”
I know you collected cards when you were a kid (AWESOME!!) …do you still collect and, if so, what are your favorites to collect?
Zach: “I worked at a card shop as a kid. I bought a lot as a teenager and even took out a loan to buy the really old stuff when the shop closed in the 90’s. I still have them. My favorite is my graded complete set of 1955 Topps baseball! I have a few (Michael) Jordan rookies and stuff, but I love the old stuff. I have a Shoeless Joe Jackson and some real old stuff I will one day pass on to my kids. I mostly now only collect the Topps products I work on and I’m fortunate to sometimes get my art piece autographed by players. My favorite is my Nolan Ryan I have signed in my gallery room.”
Thank you so much for the interview, Zach! I really appreciate it! You’re the MAN!!
I hope you enjoyed the interview with Zach! Keep a look out for some of his sketch cards and make sure to show Zach and me on social media when you hit one so we can see it! You can find out more about Zach at zachwoolsey.com and follow him on Instagram at zachwoolseyartwerx.
Thank you all for reading this month’s blog. My next blog will be a preview of The National Sports Collectors Convention, so stay tuned!