2017 Series 2 GPK Battle of the Bands Sketch Card Preview

GPK sketch artists have been spending countless sleepless nights working on sketch cards for both 2017S2 GPK Battle of the Bands and 2018S1 GPK We Hate the 80’s. The deadline for artists completing sketches for Battle of the Bands is quickly approaching in early September. That hasn’t stopped some artists from not only completing their sketches, but also getting Topps approval. While I’ve only seen a couple of artists gain approval so far, more will be in the coming weeks. I will keep a running post below as artists share sketches. (Note that all sketches must be approved by Topps before being inserted into packs. Also, Topps will hold sketches back for replacements.) All photos courtesy of the artist, their Facebook page and/or website.

Updated 9/16/17 (Showing sketch previews from 31 of 49 confirmed artists.) Continue reading 2017 Series 2 GPK Battle of the Bands Sketch Card Preview

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Gross Card Con Coming to Las Vegas Toy Con in 2018

The Las Vegas Toy Con has announced that within their next show will be Gross Card Con (GCC). This will be the second such convention focused on Garbage Pail Kids in Las Vegas. The first, GPK-Con, was held last Aug. as part of the Super Toy Con event. The event will take place at the Circus Circus hotel on the Las Vegas strip on Feb. 23-25, 2018.

Planning is currently underway for GPK related events and artists that will be attending. The show has not officially announced any details as of yet. An event similar to last time is expected with more artists, promo cards created by the artists attending the event, and much more. Be sure to check out the Las Vegas Toy Con website for more information, or GPKNews will being you additional details once available.

Check out our review of last years show here!

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2017S2 & 2018S1 GPK Sketch Card Lineups Take Shape

Updated 9/14 to add Derrin Pepe.

Updated 9/8 to change Jon Gregory and Simon Jacobsohn to 2018S1 only.

Updated 9/7 to add Josh Ginter, Bobby Blakey, Quinton Baker, and Pat Chaimuang.

Updated 8/11 to remove Dennis Gortakowski.

Updated 8/9 to add new artist Dave Gacey.

Updated 8/8 to add new artist Simon Jacobsohn.

Updated 8/7 to add new artist Mike Arnold.

Two months after announcing the next GPK set, 2017 Series 2 Garbage Pail Kids Battle of the Bands, Topps began sending out invites this week to perspective sketch card artists. In a bit of a surprise the invites were not just for 2017S2, but also for 2018S1. Artists accepting will be shipped sketch cards for both sets at once. This will give the artists more time to complete the sketches for the 2018S1 set. With just over 3 months between sets, Topps is trying to stay ahead with the GPK brand so 2018S1 isn’t rushed.

For 2017S1 GPK Adam-Geddon, released back in January, Topps had 38 sketch artists take part in the set. Of those 38 it appears only 28 are confirmed to return for 2017S2, while 31 are confirmed for 2018S1. The following artists from 2017S1 Adam-Geddon will return for both 2017S2 and 2018S1; Simone Arena, Michael Barnard, Neil Camera, Daniel Contois, Jasmine Contois, Sobot Cortez, Jason Crosby, “GPK” Dave Dabila (2018S1 Only), Vincenzo “Chenduz” D’Ippolito, Patrick Giles, Cecilia Granata, Jon Gregory (2018S1 Only), Kelly Greider, Jason Heil, Marisol Henriquez, Lowell Isaac, Robert Jimenez, Matthew Kirsch, “Smokin” Joe McWilliams, Chris Meeks (2018S1 Only), Lily Mercado, Rich Molinelli, JM Monserrat, Barry Nygma, Steve Potter, Cathy Razim, Chad Scheres, Anthony Skubis, Matt Steffens, Magnus Von Robotsoon, and Dan Burn Webster. Six artists who worked on the last series are not returning for various reasons. Mainstay GPK artists Brent Engstrom and Joe Simko will continue to paint numerous base cards from in the upcoming series, but will not be working on sketch cards. Longtime GPK sketch artists and fan favorites Dustin Graham, Dennis Gortakowski, Ryan Moffet, and Sean Norvet all decided for various reasons to no longer create sketch cards. Finally Denis St. John is undecided.

Topps isn’t stopping there. As with the last few sets, there are many artists making their GPK debuts. The following artists have confirmed accepting the invites; Bryan Abston, Mike Arnold, Ro Garcia Astorga, Quinton Baker (2018S1 Only), Bobby Blakey, Sean Bolger, John Brewer, Pat Chaimuang, Dave Gacey, Josh Ginter, Joseph Grotesque, Simon Jacobsohn (2018S1 Only), Kevin Lea, Paul Mangione, Mike McHugh, Rory McQueen, Ande Moores (2018S1 Only), Victor Moreno, Darrin Pepe, Brent Scotchmer, Floyd Sumner, Gregory Tilson, Matthew White, and Gavin Williams. While a couple of these artists will be making their Topps sketch debut, the majority have worked on other Topps properties in the past. In most cases these artists have also been GPK collectors for a long time. The total of new artists for 2017S2 is 21, while 24 artists will work on 2018S1. The largest group of new artists in some time brings a record 49 artists working on 2017S2, while 2018S1 will break that mark with 55 artists.

While the number of sketch artists is increasing, their workload is getting smaller. Artists will be shipped the same number of sketch blanks for both sets. While Loaded, Panoramic, and Dual Artist Panoramic sketch numbers appear consistent with previous sets, the amount of regular and die-cut sketches has dropped versus 2017S1 Adam-Geddon. This can mean a couple of things. Most likely, sketch cards will be tougher to come by in the next two sets. Of course this is also all based on production numbers. While Topps has pre-order info for 2017S2, they have not solicited yet for 2018S1. There is no way to know at this point how much product gets ordered. If the products are popular and prove to sell well, then sketches will be very hard to pull. This will be especially true with the Shaped sketches which are now only found in Collector boxes. Topps has cut back by up to 66% on the amount issued to artists. We saw this with Adam-Geddon. Despite production being lower, sketch odds were longer than previous sets. Bottom line is, it keeps getting harder and harder to pull a sketch card in packs.

One improvement this time around compared to Adam-Geddon is the deadlines the artists have to complete sketches. Artists will have nearly two months to complete 2017S2 sketches, with a deadline in mid-Sept. The 2018S1 sketches are not due until early Dec., giving artists ample time to work on sketches. Artists had just over a month to complete sketches for Adam-Geddon, so the slightly longer deadlines should help the artists. Besides the deadlines, not much else appears to have changed with sketch card rules. Artist Return sketches still must be completed prior to the set’s release. Approval via scan by the Art Director must happen before they can be mailed to customers on the release date. The “banned sketch” list continues to be the same. Artists are not allowed to sketch cards featuring Stan Lee, Gene Simmons, the Hundreds set, Riot Fest set, and all Disney properties including Star Wars and Marvel. Expect sketch previews to start showing up just prior to release after approval towards the end of Sept. 2017 Series 2 Garbage Pail Kids Battle of the Bands is set to hit stores on Oct. 18th, 2017.

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Sketch Artists Begin Work on 2017S2 & 2018S1 Sketches

GPK artists began receiving their blank sketch cards in the mail this past weekend for the next two sets. The 48 artists who have accepted invites for either both or one of the next sets can now begin the long nights of sketching.

The sketch blanks for 2017 Series 2 Garbage Pail Kids Battle of the Bands features the Live Mike character from OS 2 on the back of the regular and panoramic sized sketches. The backs of the sketches are light blue, while the front of the regular sized sketch has a yellow name plate. The usual red banner returns to the fronts.

While not much is known about 2018 Series 1 Garbage Pail Kids, we have our first clue. The backs of the 2018S1 sketches feature the character Reuben Cube, card #277a, from OS 7. Rumors online have been the 2018S1 set will be 80’s themed. If that’s the case a character parodying a Rubik’s Cube certainly fits. The color on the backs is the same as the 2017S2 light blue. However one big change is to the banner. Instead of a white background with the red banner, it is a yellow background. The name plate on the regular sized sketch is pink for this series.

The rules around sketching look to have remained the same. Artists are not allowed to sketch cards featuring Stan Lee, Gene Simmons, the Hundreds set, Riot Fest set, and all Disney properties including Star Wars and Marvel. Sketch artists will have to get busy quickly as Dual Artist Panoramic are due back Aug. 1. Artists will have much more time to complete the other cards of both sets. 2017S2 GPK Battle of the bands is set to launch on 10/18/17, while 2018 S1 GPK will launch sometime in Jan. 2018.

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2018 Series 1 Garbage Pail Kids Set for January

The ink hasn’t dried on 2017 Series 2 GPK Battle of the Bands yet, but Topps is already fast at work on the first retail series of 2018. Nothing has been publicly announced by Topps yet, but with Battle of the Bands cards already complete the focus has shifted to getting a head start on the next set. Topps also begin soliciting artist sketch card invites today for not only 2017S2, but also 2018S1 sets. Not much else is known about the 2018S1 set. Topps seems to be following the same release schedule as the previous sets. Based on timelines for when sketches are due, it appears Topps is shooting for a mid-Jan 2018 release. This will make only 4 months between retail sets. However unlike last year when sketch card deadlines were extremely tight for 2017S1, artists will have much more time to complete the cards for 2018S1. We are still probably a couple of months away from seeing sell sheets for the 2018S1 set, as Topps usually gives a 6 month window on those. Stay tuned to GPKNews as more info comes out.

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10 Questions With…Garbage Pail Kids Artist Neil Camera

Garbage Pail Kids collectors have just started to get to know Neil Camera even though he’s been working on GPKs for years. Starting with Topps in 2002, Neil has mainly focused on the Wacky Packages brand, painting hundreds of Wacky’s over the years. What GPK collectors might not know is Neil has also had a hand in GPKs going back to the ANS sets. Neil has worked on insert cards, card backs, and been one of the primary sketch card artists for years. Finally in the 2016 Series 2 GPK Prime Slime set, Neil had his first main set base GPK card. He’s now a regular with cards in 2017 Series 1, online releases, and the soon to release 2017 Series 2 Battle of the Bands. Neil was kind enough to grant me this e-mail interview. We discuss his history with GPKs, his future GPK work, and the the fact that he might not be the best artist in his own house!

GPKNews – Thanks for taking the time to do the interview Neil! It was great meeting you and your daughter last year in Vegas at GPK-Con 1. GPK fans might not be as familiar with your work unless they are Wacky Packages collectors as well. How did you get your start with Topps and working on Wackys?

Neil Camera – The GPK Con was certainly a lot of fun, wasn’t it?! So, I started working for Topps in 2002. I had just finished a self-published set called “Pranky Products”, which were in a similar vein to Wacky Packages. Coincidentally, Topps was in the process of reviving Wacky Packages and on the recommendation of John Pound, I submitted some of my samples to Topps for consideration in the All New Series. Luckily, they liked what they saw!

GPKNews – Were you a Wacky Packages collector growing up? How about Garbage Pail Kids, what are your memories of those first GPK series in the mid-80’s?

NC – Oh yeah! Wacky Packages were the king of collectibles back in the 70’s! I had almost every sticker. I even took a bunch and ran them through my typewriter and added gags I thought would be funny. Not so funny now that I know what they’re worth! I was a bit older when GPK came out and not as avid a collector, although I found them pretty amusing! In fact, I remember buying an entire series 1-15 collection at a flea market. The funny part is that I could see the seller was having second thoughts and I later went back and told him to keep them. He obviously needed them more than me.

GPKNews – Your first involvement with Garbage Pail Kids wasn’t until ANS 7, when you worked on card backs. What led to the initial work on GPK with Topps?

NC – Jay Lynch. We had previously worked on a lot of Wacky Packages projects so the GPK thing was a good fit. My favorite was the GPK Activity cards. In one instance, we literally spent an entire weekend figuring out how to make one of the cards work correctly (the #10 Rainbow card). The other 9 were almost as crazy.

GPKNews – You continued to work on card backs, some insert sets, and even sketch cards through the next generation of GPK sets; Flashback, BNS, Yearly series. Finally, with 2016 Series 2 GPK Trashy TV we got your first base set card fronts. (The MASH one is one of my favorites from that set!) You did two for the Trashy TV set, and five I believe for the 2017 Series 1 GPK Adam-Geddon set. Do you enjoy painting GPKs? How is it similar or different from painting Wackys?

NC – I typically try to emulate the style of the original creators in my Topps work. It’s the old adage, “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it”. So, in the case of Wacky Packages, Norm Saunders used very loose, but subtle brushstrokes (in gouache) and combined it with dramatic color and lighting, whereas with GPK, Pound’s style was equally dynamic but a bit more choreographed with a considerable amount of airbrush. Two very different styles, but both equally impressive and challenging.

GPKNews – You also have done numerous GPKs and Wackys for the on demand online exclusive sets. I know there are tight deadlines and turn around times for these cards. How has working on those been the past few months? How is it different working on those compared to the retail release cards?

NC – Aside from the crazy deadlines, there are certain aspects of the digital program that I really enjoy: Since we often only get one take on the finished art, I’ve learned to paint faster and looser. So, it keeps me on my toes and as long as I don’t stop and think about it too much, it usually works out well. Just don’t second guess the details.

GPKNews – You’ve also done GPK sketches going all the way back to the Flashback series. You have a lot of fans of your sketch card work. Your sketches, especially the returns, you do are gorgeous. Is this something you enjoy doing each release?

NC – Apart from the brand itself, I really enjoy the format. Having painted wall murals in my early career, I got tired of running up and down a ladder to check my work, and learned to appreciate the convenience of a small canvas! Nearly everything I paint these days is no larger than 8” x 10”.

GPKNews – Recently Topps announced the next retail GPK set, 2017 Series 2 GPK Battle of the Bands, do you know yet if you will be doing any card fronts for the next series? Are you still on board for sketches?

NC – Yes on both counts.

GPKNews – With WP 50th just being launched, what else is in store for the artwork of Neil Camera? Anything else you are working on?

NC – I’m always working on something. In fact, my biggest challenge these days is to learn to say “No” to a project and take some time off occasionally. Easier said than done, as most freelance artists can attest. With that said, there’s one project in particular that I’m especially eager about. It involves music and art, and should be released this Fall. But that’s all I can say about it now.

GPKNews – We had a chance to visit last year in Las Vegas at GPK-Con 1. From a collector’s perspective it was a great experience! I hear GPK-Con 2 is in the early planning stages for next Feb. What was the experience like for you? Do you attend a lot of cons around the country? Did you enjoy meeting the artists and GPK fans?

NC – Because of my work schedule, I actually attend very few shows, so going to Vegas and finally meeting some of the GPK fans was a real hoot! And of course, having so many of the GPK artists at one venue was probably a once-in-a-lifetime event, so I’d imagine the fans that attended were equally thrilled! Definitely keeping GPK-Con 2 on my radar.

GPKNews – Did you get a chance to see the 30 Years of Garbage documentary that Jeff Zapata and Joe Simko directed? If so, what are your thoughts? What are your thoughts about being a part of the long history of GPK?

NC – Great documentary! Fantastic content and very well crafted. Worthy of putting in a capsule and firing it into deep space for aliens to find someday and learn about our culture. Interestingly, I’ve had some discussions with Joe about the idea of doing a Wacky Packages 50th video, but I think we all realize, for better or worse, there isn’t nearly as much drama to that story!

GPKNews – You shared a great story with us when Jay Lynch passed a few weeks ago. He was so important to Topps especially in the early years. Do you have any other Jay Lynch stories you can share?

NC – Jay may qualify as the “World’s Most Interesting Man”, but most stories I have about him would take many pages to do proper justice, so I won’t try here. Someday, I hope to gather all of my recollections in a book and release it as a tribute.

GPKNews – You aren’t the only artist in the Camera family! Your daughter, Halsey, is a fine artist in her own right. We need Dual Artist Camera/Camera sketch cards in the next series! What are the chances we get to see the first 2nd generation GPK artist?

NC – Yeah, it’s getting pretty competitive in the Camera household! If she keeps it up, I may be out of a job! Seriously, she brings so much depth and character to her art, that I find myself constantly looking over her shoulder and learning from her. She’s already started an animation gig with a Silicon Valley software firm. I couldn’t be prouder.

GPKNews – Finally do you have an all time favorite Garbage Pail Kid?

NC – This may be your toughest question yet. I guess from an aesthetic standpoint, I’d have to say it’s tough to beat “Adam”, but I really enjoy titles like “Drippy Dan” and “Meltin’ Milton” and “Bony Tony” for their really simple gags and big punchlines.

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Former GPK Artist Pat Glover (1965-2017) Passes Away

Former Garbage Pail Kids Artist Patrick Glover passed away on July 3, 2017 in New Jersey. Patrick and his brother, Sean, worked as a team during the early releases of the All New Series GPK reboot. The Glovers are responsible for the first insert cards in GPK sets, as they completed the artwork for ANS 1 Silver/Gold Inserts. They also did all the artwork for the Little Stickers, these were the wrap arounds included with each piece of gum during the first printing of ANS 1. In ANS 2 they branched out into final artwork for the base set. They are credited with five base cards (10, 17, 26, 30, and 38), and also one Scratch & Stink insert (S2). They continued to do the artwork for the insert foil sets in ANS 2 & 3. Pat and Sean also teamed up on a number of Wacky Packages cards for Topps around the same time frame.

Patrick grew up in the New York area, and graduated from The Copper Union art school in 1987. After working for Topps he focused on a series of paintings based on photos he would take in the rain on the highway. Pat spent time living in North Carolina as well. His artwork has been shown in galleries all around the United States.

Sean was kind enough to share some memories they had of their time working for Topps:

“Pat and I decided that, since I had gone to Ringling School of Art and my major was illustration, that I should be in charge of the rendering of the Garbage Pail Kids in accordance with the new style sheets.  After I gave him the line drawings in ink, since he was a Cooper Union graduate with a concentration in painting, he would scan and colorize the art for production. This seemed to work pretty well, especially when it came to the original artwork that we came up with.  Pat was an excellent painter and had a great sense of color.

I think the one episode that left us shaking our heads and made us laugh, was an idea that we proposed. We had a fat GPK sitting next to an empty dog bowl that had the name “Fido” on it. There was a collar and some fur on the floor in front of him and he was picking his teeth with a small bone. The powers that be at Topps thought that it was “Too Gross”. We thought that was histerical!  Here you have a character vomiting into a frying pan or popping zits and this was too gross?!

Pat and I worked together for years in Charlotte, NC. We painted murals and worked for decorators, doing faux finishes and other decorative work. We ran a gallery for young artists to show their work and had a thriving figure drawing group.  
Pat was always homesick for NYC and he eventually moved back.  He settled in Jersey City where he worked and lived until he passed.

Pat and I truly enjoyed working on the GPK series and appreciated the opportunity that John Williams and Topps gave us to be part of such an amazing legacy.”

A memorial to celebrate Patrick’s life will be held in Charlotte next Wednesday, hosted by the arts community.

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GPK Collectors Enjoy Weekend at Philly Non-Sport Show

This past weekend was the semiannual Philly Non-Sport Show. The show is one of the largest non-sport card focused shows in the country. The spring show was themed Garbage Pail Kids/Wacky Packages. The GPKnews.com East Coast Bureau, (AKA Steve Sodergren & Erica Fox), filed this report on the show.

This past weekend saw the 66th Philly Non-Sport Show held at the Merchants Square Mall in Allentown, Pa. Collectors flocked from all over for the oldest show of it’s kind in the country. This particular show held even more interest for Garbage Pail Kids and Wacky Packages collectors, as it had a show exclusive and Topps licensed nine card GPK and Wacky Packages set. Vendors from across the country were on hand with a wide variety of all things non-sports cards and related merchandise selling boxes, sets, singles and even wrappers for a myriad of card brands. Among these vendors were six Topps official artists all located in what was referred to as “The Artist’s Corner.” Layron DeJarnette, Jon Gregory, Smokin’ Joe McWilliams, Chad Scheres, Joe Simko and Jeff Zapata were all on hand selling sketch cards and their own personal non-Topps projects, as well as taking commissions, signing autographs and chatting with fans. One artist billed to be there, Neil Camera, could not attend due to weather problems interrupting travel. Located near “The Artist’s Corner” was vendor and well known eBay seller Clint Coleman (9046clint) who brought his GPK and Wacky Warehouse to the show. Also seen floating around the artists area was GPK historian “Barren” Aaron Booton, who’s site gpkworld.com has helped many collectors over the years. The show’s promoter and organizer Roxanne Toser (Roxanne Toser Enterpriss) and family were on hand keeping the show running smoothly, as well as selling all things Wacky and GPK at their very own stand.

Rarely seen items were on display for purchase. Those included the extremely rare GPK pencils valued at $25 a piece, also Imperial toys in the packaging, and not marred by price tags and unused still in the box Halloween costumes. Attendees could find deals throughout the show, including not mint but still nice OS 1 singles starting at $2 each,  U.K. minis ranging from 25¢ to $1 each depending on condition, and $1 mint giant Series 1 and 2 cards. Everywhere you looked collectors could be seen rifling through cards with their needs lists in hand making deals to help complete their various card projects. Attendees also were able to purchase the exclusive GPK and Wacky Packages card set for $25. Only 300 were printed and less than that were available for sale. Some were used by the artists who were selling signed copies of their own cards, some sets were used as prizes, and some were also sent back to Topps. The set was limited to two per person and arm bands were marked to ensure fairness that the limit was enforced. Saturday’s allotment, which according to Harris Toser of Non-Sport Update and Beckett Media, was the bulk of the run and were sold out by somewhere between 12:00 and 1:00. A sign was put on the table announcing that more would be available Sunday. All attendees were given a free card set they could choose from a table at the entrance as well as show exclusive promo and event cards, which included an in memoriam card for Topps veteran and GPK and WP legend Jay Lynch who passed away on March 5.

Day one finished off with a sold out dinner hosted by the Tosers which took place at the show’s host hotel, Hilton Garden Inn. The dinner was in honor of Jay Lynch and the late Frank Reighter who started the Philly Non-Sports Card Show back in 1984. Frank died on February 3 of this year. Upon entering the dinner, guests were given a dinner exclusive card package which included a Wacky Packages 50th Anniversary card done by George Wright and a metal version of the Jay Lynch memoriam card. Assigned seating was given and each table had an artist seated there. This seating arrangement lent itself well to collectors of both brands to talk with the artists and each other on a more personal level. The atmosphere was very welcoming as Roxanne’s attention to detail created a well organized evening that ensured not only the comfort of the diners, but also kept it structured and moving along at a good pace.  The dinner opened with each guest introducing themselves. Dinner attendees included all six show attending GPK and WP artists as well as artist George Wright who created the artwork for the dinner exclusive card, Melty Misfits creator Buff Monster, and former Topps Vault manager and Beckett’s Price Guide editor Mike Jasperson. Also in attendance were hardcore Wacky and GPK collectors who are well known in their respective communities including Aaron Booton and Clint Coleman. The dinner featured a speech given by Jeff Zapata honoring his friend, mentor and former roommate Jay Lynch. Jeff opened the room up to anyone who wanted to share a story or reflect on the life of Jay. Others who spoke included Mike Japerson, Smokin’ Joe, Roxanne and her husband Marlin. The night ended with a prize drawing in which Roxanne herself and attendees pulled the winning names out of an original GPK garbage can. Prizes included a framed uncut sheet of a past event promo card created by Jay, a large metal card of the exclusive dinner card, a Jay Lynch memorial service poster, IDW GPK Puketacular comic books, a box of GPK Prime Slime Trashy TV, a 30 Years of Garbage DVD, and the table centerpieces which were made by Roxanne herself. Capping the evening was a very special surprise gift for all attending as each table got a metal card of the artist that they had dinner with. The admission price for this evening was well worth the night of fun and surprises that Roxanne and family provided.

Every show features a card talk session on Sunday morning. The 66th talk featured a Garbage Pail Kids and Wacky Packages panel and included Layron DeJarnette, Smokin’ Joe McWilliams, Chad Scheres, Joe Simko and Jeff Zapata. The talk was a Q & A format where anyone in attendance could ask the artists a question. The panel opened with each artist introducing themselves, where they live and some of their current and past personal and professional experiences with GPK and WP. After the intro it was open for anyone to ask a question. There were six questions in total asked. The first was directed to Smokin’ Joe regarding his experience growing up locating and collecting Wacky Packages. The second question was asked of Chad Scheres regarding any future plans to do a Rat Finks or Hot Rod inspired set. Questions three and four centered on Topps’ online card releases and the artists gave their thoughts on the pros and cons of the current card trend and collecting experience. Question five asked for each artist to share a rejected concept that they submitted and really liked, but for whatever reason never made it. Question six asked why the artists are not more prominently credited on their cards. As with the dinner there was a promo card handed out. This promo was non-GPK and Wacky themed. Also as with the dinner, there was a prize drawing in which 18 various non-sport cards and merchandise prizes were given including a box of 50th Anniversary Wacky Packages and a box of GPK PSTT both courtesy of Topps. The card talk lasted approximately an hour and ended around 9:15 allowing plenty of time to make the 10:00am opening of the show.

Day two of the show included a day specific promo card done by Tom Bunk. The remaining exclusive card sets were sold, again only two per customer and were not opened to vendor purchase until around 1:00. As with Saturday the set sold out. The show was a little less crowded as the previous day,  but there were still plenty of attendees. Unlike Saturday, Sunday had a prize drawing for varied non-sport goodies. One prize winner was Allender’s House of Checklist creator Jeff Allender. Artists Jason Brower and Fred Wheaton were also attendees at the show and Fred attended the card talk as well.

Some upcoming releases were mentioned during the weekend which included a new themed GPK set slated for release in the fall according to Joe Simko. Details on the theme, size or set format were not given. Smokin’ Joe said he finally has had some of his GPK gags approved and will be part of the GPK artist lineup. Jeff Zapata made mention of a parody card set that he said he is currently trying to produce, but gave no further details on it. He also made mention of possibly working on his memoirs this year. Independent card company Sidekick Labs was on hand at the show and they handed out a promo card for a upcoming Spanish version of Melty Misfits 2 and it was also mentioned that Buff Monster was working on Melty Misfits 3.

The next Philly Non-Sports Card Show will be held on October 21-22 at Merchants Square Mall.

Thanks to Steve and Erica for their report on the show! Look later this week to GPKnews.com for transcripts of the card talk and Jay Lynch tributes. Below are the pictures they took of all the festivities! 

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Cartoonist Jay Lynch (1945-2017) Passes Away

Former GPK/Wacky artist Jay Lynch passed away Sunday after a battle with lung cancer. Jay Lynch, 72, was perhaps best known for his work as an Underground Comix cartoonist in the 1960’s and 1970’s. In 1968 working with Art Spiegelman and Len Brown, Jay became a internal part of the Wacky Packages line for Topps. His work with Topps on Wacky Packages led right into working on Garbage Pail Kids. He is responsible for writing many gags for GPK cards through the OS and ANS sets. Jay would submit roughs of gags on a regular basis to Topps Art Directors, who would have the finals painted by other artists. Jay also did dozens of GPK card backs in the OS and ANS sets. His work was not limited to just these sets, as Jay worked on a number of other non-sport sets for Topps through the years. Jay also wrote the Bazooka Joe Comics for decades. He worked for a time for Mad Magazine, and has even written a number of children’s books. His archives are housed at the The Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum at the campus of Ohio St. University.

As his health deteriorated and medicals bills started adding up, Topps released the Jay Lynch Tribute set on topps.com. The set is a reimagine of some of Jay’s GPK and Wacky gags painted by 11 different Topps artists. You still have time to purchase the set, as the sale is set to end on 3/14. Topps released a statement on the passing of Jay Monday morning via their GPK Facebook Page:

“We are deeply saddened by the loss of artist Jay Lynch. Jay was one of the original artists on Garbage Pail Kids and Wacky Packages, and many people at Topps developed strong and close relationships with him over the years. Our condolences go out to his family, friends, and countless fans he touched with his unique artwork.”

Jay’s friends, fellow artists, and former colleagues posted on Facebook Sunday to share their thoughts on his passing. Jay was remembered as a great friend, inspiring mentor, legendary cartoonist, and all around nice guy. Longtime fellow GPK/Wacky artist David Gross has this to share about Jay, “Just got home tonight to find out my good friend, mentor and inspiration Jay Lynch passed away today. Jay is one of the creators of Wacky Packages, Garbage Pail Kids and was a key underground artist, Mad Magazine contributor and all around nice guy. He never turned away a fan for a drawing or a conversation. He is responsible for my favorite hobby as a kid, my inspiration to get into art and in later years for me working on those same childhood obsessions, Wacky Packages and Garbage Pail Kids. I thought we’d have him a lot longer than this. RIP Jay Lynch.” 

There are dozens of stories on how helpful Jay was to aspiring artists, and would be more than willing to mentor them. David Gross told a great story of how Jay helped him get started with Topps, “As a fan I would geek out and send him drawings and he would always write me an honest critique and helpful comments. When he learned Topps was bringing back Wacky Packages he contacted me and told me to whip up some samples and contacted Topps on my behalf. Even better than that I got to collaborate with him on the first four Wacky Packages Old School series and thanks to him they were, and still are, my favorite art projects. I’d stay up all night calling or emailing back and forth with him designing the roughs. running gags by each other and going off on tangents about strange inventions he would come up with, politics or just something that was eating at him that week especially concerning his house or his cats.”.

Another longtime Wacky/GPK artist Neil Camera shared his story with us on first working with Jay, “In 2002, I had the good fortune to collaborate with Jay on a my first project with Topps. I knew Jay from my many years as a collector, but this was the first time we would be working together. To my surprise, he was very approachable, in spite of the fact that I was the “newcomer” to Topps.  If he had any preconcieved expectations of me, he didn’t let on. Rather, he chose to enlighten me with his own irreverant brand of wit. He took time to teach me about all kinds of arcane matters, from rare art supplies (which he stockpiled and shared), to building DIY solar panels with vintage Zenith TV screens. In the course of that first project, I soon realized that there was nothing typical about Jay and any description I can offer here, wouldn’t do proper justice. But over the years, I’ve learned that at the heart of the artist, Jay was old world in every sense: inventor, philosopher, poet, technocrat, economist and teacher. Oh, and owner of many cats. His spirit will be sorely missed in this world.”

Here are some of the comments from around the Garbage Pail Kids community on Jay Lynch’s passing.

 

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Mark Pingitore Leaving Topps to Focus on Magic Marker Art

Long time Topps Garbage Pail Kids artist Mark Pingitore has decided to leave his freelance job at Topps. As he first mentioned on the GPK Underground Message board a few days ago, Mark has left to focus on his own art and his company, Magic Marker Art. His last six paintings appeared in the recently released 2017 Garbage Pail Kids Adam-Geddon set. Mark was hired by former Topps Art Director, Jeff Zapata, and started with the GPK brand on the Flashback 1 set. Mark’s front card final paintings have appeared in every set since that Flashback 1 set. I conducted an e-mail interview with Mark this week. We discuss his reasons for leaving Topps, what he has planned with Magic Marker Art going forward, and we also get a little nostalgic with Mark and his time at Topps.

GPKNews – Mark, thanks for doing the interview with me. Say it isn’t so! Recent reports have you leaving Topps to focus on your own art and brands. Why the decision to leave Topps?

Mark Pingitore – Thanks for reaching out for an interview Jeff! Yes, Adam-geddon will be the last GPK release that I contribute to. It wasn’t a conscious decision per se, but more so just the direction my focus has gone. Over the years I have done my own GPKesque parody work on the side for conventions and art shows. Doing them, I’ve really enjoyed having complete creative control, deadlines that I plan, and a consistent overall look with the artwork that producing my own stuff allows. That coupled with a general dissatisfaction of the current direction of GPK with the political focus, not enjoying or following politics really, it has just become my preference to focus on my own work, which is a more rewarding creative outlet for me.

GPKNews – In October of last year Topps sent their lawyers out on a cease and desist mission to protect their intellectual property. Many GPK artists and websites were hit with notices, including yourself, right as your Horrible Kids set was launching. How much does that experience play into your decision?

MP – I will just say that how Topps handled themselves definitely played a part.

GPKNews – In our previous interview you talked about how you collected GPKs as a kid and into high school. How hard of a decision was it to leave Topps? Did the nostalgia and something you collected as a kid pull at the heart strings a little bit?

MP – It’s always a difficult choice to commit to a big career decision, so it wasn’t without some weighing of pros and cons. I had 10+ years working on GPK though, and feel like I accomplished the original goal I had when I first started submitting ideas. It took a lot of work going from a concept artist to a final front artist. I was able to create some GPK that I’m really proud of, that I feel captured the original appeal and look of the OS sets. As I continue on in my own projects, I strive to make each one better than the last.

GPKNews – Let’s chat about the future and the Magic Marker Art brand you have. In the last year you’ve released three new sets, Disasters of the Universe 1 & 2, and Horrible Kids 1. Have those releases been successful for you?

MP – I’ve been very happy with the response to the work I’ve been releasing. I couldn’t do it without the support of those who buy the product and original art from me, so I can’t thank them enough. It was the artwork and writing that made the OS GPK so great, so making that quality and having everything flow together well is important to me.

GPKNews – What’s next for Magic Marker Art? I’ve seen you post previews for a GI Jokes set that you are working on. I’ve also seen some talk about a TMNT set in the pipeline? Any release timelines in mind?

MP – I’m working on finishing G.I. Jokes right now and am planning on a February 23rd release for those. After that will be a TMNT parody set, Mutagen Canister Kids, that I have the rough sketches for Series 1 finished for. I’m looking at a late March or early April release of those, depending on when the art is ready.

GPKNews – How about long term? Do you have plans for another Horrible Kids series? Or Disasters? Any other ideas floating around?

MP – I definitely have plans for a lot more in 2017. I’d like to get a set out every month or two, and have ideas for more Horrorible Kids and Disasters, as well as other directions to go in like a classic NES parody set, other fun 80s/90s toylines/cartoons, as well as movie and comic book parodies. There’s a lot of places to go. I have a bunch of unused GPK ideas from over the years that I’d like to finish up at some point too. I also want to release more shirts/phone cases/pins, etc.

GPKNews – Do you have any other upcoming freelance work for other companies we can keep an eye out for?

MP – I’m currently working on the first in a series of children’s book I’ve been commissioned to illustrate, and will also be getting back into larger scale work that is more in the realism vein.

GPKNews – Will you continue to attend some of the comic/art conventions? Any upcoming shows planned?

MP – Yup, I’m actually planning on increasing the number of conventions I set up at this year. Mostly in states surrounding the PA area, but also some others across the US. So far I’m scheduled for Greater Philadelphia Comic Con April 7-9th, East Coast Comicon April 29th & 30th, Harrisburg Comic Con May 20th & 21st, and Retro Con October 14th & 15th. I’m also looking into others including returning to Designer Con in November.

GPKNews – I commend you for taking the chance and going out on your own. What are your feelings on making this jump? Nervous at what lies ahead? Excited about new opportunities?

MP – Thank you. It is always a scary thing to make a big change, but I’ve done it before. I worked in animation for 5-6 years before I left to freelance on my own fulltime for Topps. That was a big change and somewhat of a risk, but it worked out, so I’m excited to see where this takes me. Social media and the direct interaction with the people interested in the product is a big thing for independent artists to self-produce.

GPKNews – I believe you have six final paintings in the latest GPK release, Adam-Geddon. Any idea on the total number of GPK finals you’ve painted over the years?

MP – I have a binder of all my published GPK cards, so my count is 121, not including subsets like Adam Bomb Thru History or the Locomotion cards.

GPKNews – From Garbage Pail Kids fans everywhere I want to thank you for all the art over the years we’ve been able to enjoy. You have a lot of fans, and I know you will be missed by collectors. I know you won’t miss some of the deadlines and procedures, but are you going to miss working on the Garbage Pail Kids brand? Or will your own brand fill that void for you?

MP – Thanks very much! I’ll miss the excitement of all of the GPK collectors seeing the new cards when a set is released, and seeing different reactions, but I’ll still get that with my own stuff too.

GPKNews – Finally, I know we touched on this a little bit last time, but there has been some new releases since then. What is your favorite Garbage Pail Kid you’ve painted over the years?

MP – My favorite GPK I did is still either Wade Shade from 2015 S1, or Rick Grimey from 2014 S2. Those are my two favorite sets of the new GPK too. Thanks Jeff!

Thanks Mark for the interview! Follow Mark and Magic Marker Art on Facebook. To purchase G.I. Jokes when it’s released on Feb. 23, or to buy any of Mark’s other sets, visit the Magic Marker Art website.

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