Saturday, July 11, 2009

Cards That Never Were #8

1974 Topps Traded - Rick Stelmaszek

Here's a personal request from Johngy. He always brings me the most interesting ideas for these cards.

Rick was a catcher who last appeared in the majors with the Cubs. He started out in the Washington system as an eleventh round pick in the 1967 amateur draft. He made his debut for the Senators in 1971. Rick moved with the Washington system to Texas.

After spending 1972 in the minors, Rick was called up to catch for the Rangers in 1973. He was traded to the Angels in May 1973 and finished the season out with them as a back up.

1974 was spent with the Angels AAA club. Near the trading deadline, the Angels dealt Rick to the Cubs. He played 25 games with the Cubs in 1974, with a good amount of those being one game of a double header.

1975 was spent in the Cubs minor league system. In January 1976, Rick was dealt to the Yankees. He bounced around the minor leagues until 1978, when he became the manager of the Twins A club.

I had my choice of card mock ups. Johngy requested to see Rick in a 1974 Topps Traded, a 1975 Topps or a 1976 Topps card. The choice was left up to me. I chose the 1974 Topps Traded because Rick Stelmaszek had a 1975 Topps card with the Cubs. It was badly airbrushed, but it exists. I didn't choose the 1976 Topps, since Rick last played in the majors in 1974. Therefore, in my opinion, the 1974 Topps Traded was the way to go.

When I say that Johngy presents real challenges, I mean it. The photograph was dominated by Rick's signature and personal inscription. The big yellow TRADED sign is over the part of the photograph with the signature, but the personal inscription was right above Rick's head with part of it looping down.

I think the final product turned out alright. Ordinarily, the 1974 Topps Traded set is famous for it's tight head shots of players. I wanted to zoom out a bit. If all that work was for nothing but a head shot, I would have completely wasted the effort. I set up the photograph as if it were framed by the border and not the yellow overlay.


Johngy said...

Thank you so much. This is great. I'll make sure Rick sees it. He'll get a kick out of it.

Steve Gierman said...

Fantastic! I hope that Rick likes it. If he wants to use the image for anything, he is more than welcome to do so.

Anonymous said...

Very nice job except one glaring error. His position.

What software do you use and are you a graphic artist or just a regular hack like the rest of us?

Steve Gierman said...

Good eye, anonymous stranger! I accidentally uploaded and earlier saved version of the card, before all of the changes were done. The correct version has been uploaded.

Personally, I use an older version of Photoshop. While I have never held a paying position as a graphic designer, I have done volunteer work in the field for friends and relatives and I have an art background. I guess not having any formal job as a graphic artist would make me a hack like the rest. :)

Johngy said...

Okay, now how did I miss that? I guess I was too excited about the card to notice that error.

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