Monday, April 15, 2019

2019 Brewers NOW is LIVE

My most anticipated release of the 2019 card season was the return of my own Brewers NOW brand and... with a fresh blanket of goddamn snow on the ground... a bit of summer arrived in my mailbox today with the first installment of this year's set, ordered via the Rookie App for iPhone. 



I opted for the low-key look of 1985 Donruss this year, after using a pseudo-80s Topps look for 2018. This is one of the 15 or so design templates in the Rookies app and it wasn't one that I was giving much consideration when I first began to plan for this year's set. But I liked the idea of an all-black boarded set and the simple layout and large photo area grew on me. Seeing these in person for the first time, I am really impressed with how they turned out. Lorenzo Cain gets the honors as card #1 this year, and I love that image of him after his game-saving catch on Opening Day. I wanted to get at least one card in the set with a photo from the Brewers' exhibition games in Montreal just after Spring Training ended, and I found a decent one for the Brandon Woodruff card. 

One thing absent from this year's set will be coaches cards. I went all-out last time and made cards for the entire staff. But with some significant turn-over for 2019, I was worried that I wouldn't be able to find photos of all the new guys (several of my coach cards from last year were years-old photos). So I'm keeping it simple and making only a card of skipper Craig Counsell, capturing a rare moment where he is smiling in the dugout. 

Here's a pair of fun pics... the close-up on Grandal and a peek-a-boo shot of Freddy Peralta. I might stick true to the 80s theme and include more candid portraits like the Grandal in this year's set. We'll see how it shakes out. 

You'll notice the accent color changing on these. I got a bit clever here and decided to alternate red-blue-white every three cards, setting up a nice look for the binder. It also gives that cool and very-80s splayed out look. 
Mr. MVP, of course, needs a stand-out card, and I was glad to find this fun pic of him after the sweep of the Reds. 
And here's an example of the backside. Sticking with the Donurss theme, I'm giving these guys the full-name treatment and including contract status info. I was never big into Donruss as a kid, but always got a kick from seeing the player's full names. I still remember being FLOORED when I learned Nolan Ryan's real first name was Lynn. 
Here are a pair of the season highlight cards. Again, this was a design I didn't really want anything to do with, but once I started playing around with it, I came to love the look. It has a hint of '71 Topps and leave plenty of space for vital info. I didn't include any game info (date, score) on last year's highlights, but I think it really works here. And I am alternating color schemes here as well, swapping blue for gold on every other card. These are both from Opening Day. 
Both the back designs for the highlights and player cards remain the same as last year, as the Rookies app only has these two options for backs with any content. But it works out well and I've learned to cut back on the text for these cards, as to leave them clean and readable. 

Of course, the ultimate test for these is how they look paged-up. I gotta say, I really dig the way these came out. 
Even more so for the highlight cards. The point of all this is to tell the story of season, and I'm thrilled that I'm well on my way again this year. Now, all the Brewers need to do is win the World Series... 

Easy peasy, yeah?

 

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