What the Future Holds…

I guess I better get to the 2015 round of resolutions I cannot possibly keep while we’re still in the afterglow of a new year’s dawning.

Collection Goals

15 trades- I think I got close enough to my goal of a dozen last year not be entirely disappointed in myself, so let’s up the ante.  I already have two that are slowly coming together, one with longtime frequent trading partner Shot Not Taken and another with Baseball Card Breakdown.  I’ve also pulled out some odds & ends for a few other bloggers, and I’ll start sending out emails to the lucky(?) perspective trading partners soon.  I also reserve the right to add the two I got in just under the gun in 2014 if they get me over the hump at the end of the year, since their actual arrivals did and/or will take place in 2015. 😛

Finish the following Single Page Sensations- I am over halfway done on almost all of the following, so I’d like to finish as many as possible.

Cubs: Albert Almora (5/9), Javier Baez (8/9), Kris Bryant (7/9), Tyler Colvin (6/9), Ron Santo (6/9)

Other Baseball: Dick Allen (6/9), Roberto Alomar (7/9), Albert Bell (7/9), Carlos Santana (6/9)

Bears: Charles Tillman (6/9)

Basketball: Luol Deng (7/9)

Wrestling: Victoria/Tara (7/9)

BenchWarmer: BenchWarmer model (none over 3/9)

Baseball Sets: 2011 Topps Legend Variations (6/9), 2011 Topps Diamond Anniversary Legend Variations (8/9), 2012 Topps Museum Collection “Canvas Collection” Baseball (8/9), 2014 Topps Museum Collection “Canvas Collection” Baseball (6/9 if I keep Strasburg)

Football Sets: 2013 Topps Museum Collection “Canvas Collection” Football (8/9)

Add 2 new licensed and 5 new personal Raven sketch cards- The former are crazy expensive for a B-list team character and there just aren’t a whole lot of either to go around.  I think these are pretty reasonable numbers to strive for though.

Finish both the licensed and PSC DC Comics miscellaneous Single Page Sensations- I am starting the year at 4/9 licensed and 3/9 PSC.

Complete any other sketch card Single Page Sensation- Lots to choose from, but I’m over halfway done on but a very few.

Blog Goals

Write 80 new posts- Again, we’ll up the ante a juuuust a smidge from 2014.  I did a good job of posting with a fair degree of regularity when I was actually here and posting in the year gone by, so I think I can average a little better than 1.5 posts per week in the year to come.  I’m not going to make any requirements on the number of non #collect-focused things this time though.  I feel that was a small contributor in falling off the map so early last year.  I’m stupid (not true, but I am very, very lazy), so I’m going to keep it simple.

Art Goals

Complete 50 new sketch cards- I managed 38/50 last year (1 side of that weird Marvel two card puzzle was completed).  That was close enough to not feel too much shame, especially in light of how much I managed to draw in total.  Still, this isn’t close enough to up the ante, so I will give the same number a good go again in 2015.  Paul Molitor (repurposed) and Boromir of Gondor (artist tile) are the first two in the queue.

100 total new works- I’m pretty sure I coasted past this number last year, and if you consider the multiple pictures on single pages as individual works, then I did even better.  Everything was unofficial, however.

Finish 30 old sketch cards- I barely finished any old cards in 2014, and I don’t feel like I did a very good job on what I did do, so I’m making this a point of emphasis in the new year.  I’m off to a good start, having already finished seven oldies on January 2nd (also colored most of two others).  I’m also happy to report my coloring seems to be back to nearly as strong as it was at the height of my powers a couple years ago.

You can keep track of my 2015 art progress HERE.

Writing Goals

Finish a first draft of any novel idea- I barely got anywhere on anything last year, and while I’d like to say a more stable computer situation would have helped, I’m not so sure…  There can be no excuses this year though.  I just bought the one I’m currently writing from a month ago, and I hope to have a laptop, and the additional mobility that entails, to go with it by spring.

Meryl Davis Autograph!

Here is your reward for sticking around to the bitter end: Please enjoy my best pull of 2014, a Meryl Davis autograph! ♥

Aaaand that’s all for this post I guess.  There are plenty of other things I’d like to accomplish in 2015, but these are the most pressing and/or well-defined.  A bit simpler than last year, and I’m sure I’ve probably broken a couple resolutions already, but thanks for stopping by!

Until our next…

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Free Comic Book Day 2011

And what a fun one it was.  It did get off to a rocky start, due to me getting back so late from the parents’ place the night before, which pushed everything back a bit and put them a little behind schedule to head out of town to attend the 1st birthday bash of my baby cousin or nephew or something.  I’ve always had trouble keeping familial relations straight.  But once they were on their way and I was left to my own devices, it was a blast!  I took many pictures, with a digital camera this year.  I planned ahead, because last year’s photos are still trapped in the nether regions of my phone.  And that’s terrible.

Costumed vigilantes and villains!

These were the peeps in costumes.  Darth Vader and Iron Man were there last year, but it doesn’t change the fact that their costumes are amazing, not that team Hornet aren’t impressive in their own right.  I later found out the guys in the Vader & Iron Man costumes are father and son.  Kato apparently works at the comic book shop we’re standing in front of, and was super friendly and outgoing, despite mentioning running a rather severe lack of sleep.  Kato’s daughter from the comics and Green Hornet came from out of town (and I believe Hornet is the same guy that played Batman last year).  The left fairly early, but not before I captured them all on film SD card plenty of times.

The Green Hornet and the guy that does all the work.

During a lull in the festivities...

Oh noes! Our hero is in trouble!

Random chillin'...

It should be noted that towards the end of the day, the costumed characters presence nearly caused a traffic accident.  It’s funny now, but was kinda freaky when it happened.  Speaking of kinda freaky:

Vader guy methodically approaches the hapless camera guy...

I'm not saying I peed myself a little being up this close to such a convincing Vader... but I'm not saying I didn't either.

Parts of the thing on his torso there lit up.  That was pretty cool.  Seriously though, my heart was beating a lil harder while I was getting this shot, mainly because of that scary methodical approach.

Who wants some more pics?  If you answered yes, you’re in luck.  If you answered no, you’re just being contrarian for the sake of being contrarian.

Father vs Daughter!

From this little interlude, I learned that both of them have some level of legit competence with nunchaku.

Badass...

The eyes and chest thing glow!

All told, between both places I ended up with 12 free comics, bought all of the Batman Beyond mini series that was available (#3-6) because I’m a sucker for Batman Beyond, picked up two Marvel blank cover variants (that the owner of the shop said I could bring back to display after I finish them), and a cool keychain I’ll post when I, or someone I care about, needs a little hope to keep on keepin’ on.

Besides the free comics, local comic artists were on hand to work their magic at both places.  At the more purely comic book shop, where most of my photos take place, the artists were doing free somewhat quick but fairly detailed black & white sketch covers for anyone who purchased a blank cover variation and wanted one.

This guy was there all day, taking commissions and working on blank variant covers for those that wanted them. I believe he is also the father of my little brother's high school ex-girlfriend. It's a small, small world.

This guy came in later and did his thing for around two or three hours I think. I ended up befriending him when he took a look at some of my sketch cards and seemed pretty impressed with my work.

He also showed me how to make my inking suck less.  Quite timely too, since I really started looking into that very thing recently.  He gave me one of his cool little business cards and asked me to keep in touch and email him links to some of my artings online, which is exactly what I’m going to do once I get some sleep.  Or if I ever get some sleep, whichever.

Finally, this guy was at the other place. I didn't catch his name, but he seemed like a pleasant fellow, and was doing some excellent work. Check out what he's working on there (if you can see past the pepperoni lovers' pizza)!

Seriously though, it was really dumb of me to turn down a slice of that pizza when it was offered to me.  Pizza Hut is a rare treat for my perpetually broke arse.

So yeah, even though I feel like I used to after Jr. High soccer practice and won’t be able to move when I get up later because my thighs are burning with the force of a thousand suns and will completely lock up on me whilst I slumber, I couldn’t be happier about it.  It was a truly fantastic day. 😀

All too easy...

 Until our next…

Here’s to New Beginnings!

Or, the Obligatory New Year’s Post.  The Obligatory New Year’s Resolution Post?  Whatev.  Anyway, as I begin writing this, there are nine hours and fifty-six minutes left in the year 2009 (where I’m at anyway).  Was it good to you?  Are you ready to move on?  Are you ready to step boldly into the next decade?  Do you have any resolutions for the coming new year and decade?

This is probably about the first year I’ve ever seriously considered making any resolutions for the coming year.  I was chatting with my friend David from Spain, and he asked me if I had any.  And as it turns out, yes, I kinda do.

So here they are:

First is to just be a little more focused in general.  This will help me in all facets of my life, I think.  Just focus, stick to one thing at a time a little more.  I have the attention span of a guppy (which I assume is really short, as is mine).  If I had a little better focus, I may have done something worthwhile in my life already.  It’s not too late, as sad as it makes me because it feels old to me, who’s emotionally stunted in my very early teens, I am only in my mid-20s.  I think I can still learn to focus, maybe even along those lines, learn some organizational skills.

That leads me to my most tangible goal for the new year.  And that is to accomplish something as a writer.  Finally getting close to 1000 words on something, and I want to get much, MUCH further in the new year.  You know I’ll keep y’all posted on how that goes, though it may slow down my posting at times.

Next, I want to continue to push the limits of my artistic ability.  I’ve gone from thinking I couldn’t draw anthropomorphic characters to having no trepidation at all with them in short order.  I’m still nervous when it comes to coloring and inking, but the fear is subsiding there as well.  So I want to keep moving forward.

That brings me to my next resolution.  I mentioned most of my sketch cards taking damage recently, but I’ve done eight more since they got messed up.  It brought me down for about a day, but I came back strong and have drawn eight more so far this week.  I must keep this attitude up, when it comes to responding to adversity… to deal with it, and keep fighting onward.  It is all one can do, right?

The last resolution came to mind as I started writing this post, and pertains to cards.  Virtually everyone I’ve traded with knows how slow I can be in every part of it, so I really need to be quicker in all facets of trading.  I need to email, and reply to emails faster (I’ll email about trading you that Holliday refractor sooner or later, Mojo!).  I need to send out trades faster (Roll Out the Barrel and Sooz and GSNHoF are waiting, though I need the first two’s addresses… oh and Night Owl, I finally have your stuff ready to send!).  I need my cards to be more organized so I can send out trades faster (I have cards EVERYWHERE, and only a few teams have any semblance of order).  So yeah, even though this might actually be the resolution most likely to fail, it’d do me good to get it right like all the rest.

Those are my long-winded resolutions, what are yours, if you have any?

Oh, and here’s the back of that box topper from last time.  As always, thanks for reading!

Happy New Year! 😉

Eight hours and fifty-three minutes…