KISS Sketch Cards from Dynamite

Last year I was overjoyed to find out I would be drawing sketch cards for a brand new set of KISS trading cards! I’ve been a big fan of KISS for a long time, so this was definitely a dream project. In highschool my friends and I would listen to KISS on repeat and draw them in art class, and every other class in the corners of our notes and textbooks. I even had an old car that I would hide the rust spots by placing stickers overtop, one of which being the KISS logo. On New Years Eve, 1999, I saw KISS for the first time and sadly missed out on seeing them on their recent farewell tour. I was never an official member of the KISS Army but their music has been a part of my life and can often be heard playing in my office while I’m working!

KISS trading card from the 1978 Donruss set.
KISS trading card from the 1978 Donruss set.

The KISS trading cards from Dynamite are a 40th anniversary set from the first ever KISS trading card set. This first set was a 1978 set from Donruss. This is highly sought after 132 card set that new and old fans are still  collecting. The new Dynamite set has some nods to the original set with cards that form to create a large puzzle and amazing photography of the band. Adding to the original content, the new set has autographs from Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley, artwork from the new Dynamite KISS comics with autographs from writers and artists from those series, plus original art cards (sketch cards) made by people like myself.

“Kiss trading cards are some of the most collectible memorabilia out there, they’ve been around since the early days of the band,” bassist Gene Simmons. “These new cards add to the tradition and the lore of Kiss, and I can’t wait for fans to get their hands on them.”  ultimateclassicrock.com

Sketch cards I made for the set

For this trading card set I focused primarily on depicting Gene Simmons and Paul Stanley. Peter and Ace were also drawn in this set but not as frequently. There are only a few sketch cards where more than one band member was drawn on a card. The paper stock was too slick to use my polychromous pencil crayons on and it was too thin for paints, so I stuck to inks and markers. I actually quite like using just inks and markers here as it gave a comicbook feel to it that works great for KISS.

Artist returns

If you’re interested in purchasing some of my artist returns from this set or to commission me to draw one or more of the KISS band members, please contact me here!

Topps 2019 Baseball Museum Collection

Back-to-back weeks of baseball goodness! This week Topps 2019 Baseball Museum Collection trading cards were released! These are a high-end, prestige format trading card set that is offered at card and collectible stores.

I have nine artist returns available from this project and three of my drawings were reproduced in this set for the Canvas Collection series. These three drawings are of Nolan Ryan, Cal Ripken jr., & Ozzie Smith. Additionally, I created regular sketch cards and sketch cards done on shaped cards that were inserted into the packs! Check out my social media channels for examples of the cards I drew that wound up in the packs!

Artist Return Sketch Cards

Each one of the below artist return sketch cards are an original, one-of-one, hand drawn art card. I use a mix of copics, pencil crayons, acrylic, & gouache paints to create these, and each one is signed on the back.

Reprints

These three cards are reprints of three sketch cards I drew for the set. I know that someone found the original Nolan Ryan sketch card but the other two are still out there! What I love about the three players they chose from what I drew to be reprinted, besides the fact that my art was reprinted, was that they chose three of my favourite players from when I was a kid. I grew up in and around St. Louis and saw quite a few Cardinals games in the 80s. Ozzie Smith, like so many other kids in the 80s, was my favourite player. His great smile, backflips in outfield, and amazing play was something that made him stand out and become my all-time favourite baseball player!

If you would like to purchase these directly from me and have them signed, or if you have a copy yourself that you would like me to sign, please contact me! If you’re purchasing them they are $7 each or $15 for all three plus shipping.

Contact Me

#raisetheruth Charity Auction

I am trying something new by adding auctions of my sketch cards to my website, and the first of these will be a charity auction.

 

Up for auction is my hand-drawn artist proof (AP) sketch card from Journey to the Last Jedi. This is a hand-drawn sketch card I made, and is part of the small collection of APs I receive from my trading card projects. I have decided to auction this AP in support of the #raisetheruthcharity. The auction will last until 8pm Mountain Time, June 17th and the opening bid starts at $40 Canadian.

100% of the proceeds from this auction will go to #raisetheruthcharity. I will cover the cost of shipping as well.

You can also make donations directly to Dave Gaskin’s Crowdfunder page.

journey to the last jedi hux artist proof sketch card star wars hand drawn art by matt stewart
Journey to the Last Jedi, Hux, artist proof sketch card by matt stewart

What is #raisetheruth?

Dave Gaskin’s sister Ruth has been struggling with a series of chronic, degenerative and debilitating illnesses for several years. As a result, she cannot walk easily without assistance and spends her days in pain on a cocktail of medications. You can read more about it on her blog.

At the beginning of June 2019, Birmingham City Council – through a clerical error and Job Centre Plus incompetence – demanded that she pay back £5000 in allegedly ‘overpaid’ housing benefit. They want the money within 2 weeks and have cancelled her housing benefit payments.

It could take a year to contest this decision which means she potentially is at risk of being made homeless. Added to this, she’s one of the hundreds of thousands of individuals who have had to fight a Government assessment, that she’s ‘Fit For Work’.

Official UK Government figures show that over 17,000 people have died while waiting to hear from their PIP assessments. Independent testimony places the number much higher. The UN has identified that 14 million people in the UK live in poverty – unable to afford proper housing or food.

The Joseph Rowntree Foundation highlighted that 1.5m people experienced destitution in 2017 – meaning they had less than £10 a day after housing costs or had to go without at least two essentials such as shelter, food, heat, light, clothing or toiletries during a one-month period.

It goes without saying that family & friends are rallying around her and plans are in place for a fundraising event in Birmingham at the end of June but we need help. Your help.

Your donation will raise money for Ruth’s living expenses and to contest the council’s demands.

Dave Gaskin’s sister needs our help and doesn’t deserve to join the thousands of other vulnerable people in the UK who’s lives are made miserable by a system that repeatedly lets them down.

Why am I Supporting this Cause?

I am supporting this cause because Dave Gaskin is a fantastic fellow artist who is consistently donating his works for charity and I want to help him out in his time of need. I also hate seeing people with health problems not be able to receive the help they should get from their local government. To not receive the basics such as affordable health care and housing is a universal problem and while this will not fix those issues, it will help raise awareness and aid on individual in need.

“I found it is the small everyday deeds of ordinary folk that keep the darkness at bay, small acts of kindness and love.” –J.R.R. Tolkien

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Star Wars: Empire Strikes Back Black & White Sketch Cards

Topps Star Wars Empire Strikes Back Black and White Sketch Cards is a new Star Wars trading card set released this week from Topps that has some of my artwork in it! I’ve fallen well behind on posting about the trading card projects I’ve had the fortune to work on and wanted to get back into the swing of things with this one! In all I created 35 sketch cards, all of which were in black & white or grey tones. The trading cards for this set were also in black and white and follows in line with last year’s Star Wars: A New Hope Black & White set that I also contributed artwork to. However, unlike last time, these sketch cards were all in black and white or grey tones.

I didn’t do anything too fancy on these cards. For the most part I drew all of the big characters and a few smaller characters from the film. I was limited to only drawing scenes or characters from Empire Strikes Back, which honestly isn’t that many as all the other Star Wars films are loaded with background characters and aliens. Nonetheless, Empire is one of my favourite films and the Cloud City & Hoth battle scenes are ripe with great imagery.

Support an artist!

Below are my artist proofs, which are $115 each if you purchase them here. Just send me a message with which one(s) you would like and I can send you a PayPal invoice. That price also includes your shipping & a free art print of one of my drawings! If you would like more than one, then I will drop the price to $100 each as well.

More samples of my artwork

The images below are the cards that I created which were randomly inserted into packs. In addition to the regular 2.5×3.5″ sketch cards are shaped sketch cards and panel (double and triple) sketch cards.

Christmas Sale on Artist Proof Sketch Cards

Holiday sale on my sketch cards! From new to old, from movies to comic books! Prices are in US dollars and includes shipping.
 
Each one is an original drawing for an officially licensed trading card set! I also have others like Mars Attacks & Terminator that I haven’t included so please ask!
 
I can also wrap your cards in christmas paper and send it to who you want the present to go to!
Each purchase also comes with a free art print!
Message me to purchase 🙂

Topps Star Wars Masterwork 2018

Star Wars Masterwork from Topps is a premium set of trading cards that comes out every year, for the past four years. I’ve had the pleasure of creating sketch cards for the last three of these products, and I feel that this year’s is my best work yet (See previous year’s work here)!

Star Wars Masterwork sketch card booklet by matt stewart
My one Booklet sketch card

One of the reasons why I love working on Star Wars Masterwork is that it allows me to draw from the entire film and TV universe of Star Wars. There’s other sets (like Galactic Files Reborn) that also allow for all of the Star Wars universe to be drawn from, but this one provides me thicker, higher quality sketch cards to work off of. If you were buying a top loader or one-touch protector for these cards they’d be 100pt, as opposed to regular thin trading cards from other sets. This project also has unique booklet cards, of which I was invited to draw on one of them -they are especially rare!

Mediums Used

As per usual, I utilized a few different techniques for creating my sketch cards. For some of them I used pen and ink with copic marker. This produces a comic book like style that I greatly enjoy and has been my mainstay ever since I begin drawing sketch cards. I also used my more recent method of marrying copic markers with polychromous pencil crayons, which gives the image a richer and more realistic appearance.

sketch cards by matt stewart for star wars masterwork trading cards sketch cards by matt stewart for star wars masterwork trading cards sketch cards by matt stewart for star wars masterwork trading cards

New to this project was my usage of water colours and acrylic paints. For the water colours I also used a little bit of gouache. I wanted my pencils to be visible and the water colours to be simple washes. The paper wasn’t too great for it but I think the images still look good. Unfortunately, my scanner didn’t pick up the water colours too well. They look much better in person and I now have a new scanner so future projects with water colour work will be displayed even better!

star wars masterwork sketch cards by matt stewart
Pack Inserted cards painted with water colour /gouache

Earlier this year I began dabbling with acrylic paints on my sketch cards. I’ve been inspired by other artists like Kris Penix & Jay Marchand, who create their sketch cards exclusively in acrylic paint. Painting with acrylics is an incredibly so process so I decided to do only a small batch of my cards in this medium. I feel that with every project my acrylic work is getting better and I’m definitely going to be continuing to use it! I even kept a handful of these as my artist proofs!

sketch cards by matt stewart for star wars masterwork trading cards
Examples of my sketch cards painted with acrylic paints and inserted into packs! The Ahsoka on the bottom left has already been pulled and listed on ebay.
Artist Proof Sketch Cards

I have six artist proof sketch cards available to sell from this project. The Yoda, Fett & AT-AT Driver are all painted in acrylic. The Jyn and Rey have acrylic painted backgrounds and copic/ pencil crayon portrait foregrounds. The Galen is all copic /pencil crayon.

sketch cards by matt stewart for star wars masterwork trading cards
Artist Proof Sketch Cards

Please contact me if you are interested in buying one or more of my artists!

Start Making Your Own Sketch Cards!

Below are links to the materials I use!

Brand New Star Wars: The Last Jedi Sketch Cards!

My seventeenth Star Wars trading card set I’ve had the privilege to create sketch cards for has just been released! This set was a lot of fun because I started working on it after the movie had come out in theatres, meaning I had access to a lot more imagery. I had also already seen the movie (and loved it!), so was able to draw spoilers from it!

The previous The Last Jedi set was based solely upon imagery from the trailer. This is often the case with trading cards based on movies. For Rogue One it was a similar task where series 1 was based on the trailers and series 2 was worked upon a month or more after the movie’s theatrical release.

For this project I used my usual methods of some acrylic, some inked, and some with copic /polychromous pencil crayons. I have four artist proofs for sale form this project, so make sure to grab them quick before they’re gone!

Pack Inserted sketch cards

Artist proofs