We've gone to great lengths to create the highest quality homage to Garbage Pail Kids cards possible. Each of the original 5x7” paintings used for the cards was painted using acrylic and airbrush, just like the original GPK paintings were done. The cards are offset printed using custom-mixed inks on custom-made sticker stock, kiss-cut and packaged in a vintage-style wax wrapper.
We’ve created special inserts such as variant cards (featuring slightly different fronts and totally different backs), error cards (intentionally misprinted in a variety of ways), blank-back signed cards (signed by Buff Monster), sketch cards (featuring original pencil drawings by Buff Monster) and a Golden Ticket (redeemable for an original Melty Misfits painting by Buff Monster).
"Without a doubt…the most insane parody item to come along is the MELTY MISFITS. There are so many things that set this collectible apart from other bootleg/parody items: from the acute attention to detail, to the inclusion of gpk-esque errors, to the fun additional items (binder, poster, etc.), this set has it all." - GeePeeKay.com (Garbage Pail Kids enthusiast site).
The first set of cards has been a brilliant success, and now, after almost two years, it’s time to work on Series 2! Series 1 had 30 characters; Series 2 will have 40 characters. We’ll use the same paper and printing techniques as we did for the first series, but we’re also exploring some very cool new techniques. (CRAZY CARDS=$$$)
The process: Creating these cards is actually much more time-intensive than you might imagine. Let me give you a brief overview, and explain some terms that I’ve used throughout this campaign. I’ve broken the entire process into two phases: Painting/Pre-Press and Printing/Packaging.
Painting/Pre-Press: Over the past two years I've been inspired by you (my fans) and vintage cards I love. I hit the studio - put on metal ( loud) and start sketching. I narrow them down, scan them, and print them out the size they’ll be painted (5x7”). Next I do a tight pencil sketch on top of the print-out and transfer that sketch to a 5x7” piece of watercolor paper. Using an airbrush with acrylic paint, I fill in all the color, and then outline everything in black, using a brush. The finished paintings are then photographed. The photos are retouched and prepped for the printing process. The print-ready images are brought into a layout program where the design elements (like name and number) are added. Each card design is then placed in a big grid for the master printing sheet. The front and back of this master sheet is laid out and sent to the printer.
Printing/Packaging: Before printing can begin, there are a lot of technical considerations. The sticker paper for the cards is custom-made for me; the paper for the wrappers and boxes is carefully selected to match vintage papers. The wrappers are printed 2 colors at a time, and then waxed. The boxes are printed in 4 colors and then cut to shape and glued. The master card sheets are printed (using specially-selected inks), and then cut down to smaller sheets of 8-10 cards for kiss-cutting (the small die line on the front of the card that yields an organic-shaped sticker when the front of the sticker is pulled from the backing). The cards are then cut down to individual cards, collated and packed in a wrapper (each pack is folded and sealed by hand). The packs get placed in a box, topped with a small folded poster, a 4-card uncut sheet, and then sealed and shrink-wrapped.
A little more info about some of the inserts (all images are from the first series):
Cards: I call them (trading) cards, but they’re actually stickers. Just like Garbage Pail Kids, you can keep them as cards, or you can peel off the front and stick it on something. This particular type of sticker stock (featuring a thin paper sticker with a thicker backer sheet) is custom-made for us, to our exact specifications.
a/b versions: Each character is actually featured on two cards: an (a) version and a (b) version. The base set includes all the (a) and (b) versions for a total of 80 cards.
Variation cards: In the 80’s, Topps did multiple print runs of Garbage Pail Kids, and sometimes names, colors and the art on the backs of the cards would change between print runs. Since I’m only going to do one print run, I have intentionally changed a few things on some of my favorite cards.
Signed cards: To add another hands-on element to the set of cards, I’ve asked the printer do leave several sheets blank on the back. The sheets are cut down and kiss-cut, so if you’re looking at the front of the card, it’ll look like any other card. When you flip the card over, you’ll see that I’ve signed and dated the card with permanent ink.
Sketch cards: We select a very bright and heavy paper stock for these. They’re printed with 2 inks on one side, and the other side is left blank for me to draw on. I’ll do each sketch with a pencil, and then sign them.
Error cards: Any printing process will yield a certain amount of mistakes and the Garbage Pail Kids from the 80’s are no exception. These error cards are some of my favorite things to collect. I asked the state-of-the-art printing facility that prints the cards to mess up a few of the sheets. Colors are intentionally printed off-register, colors are left off, art from the back is printed on the fronts, and so on. The results are always unexpected, and always interesting.
Golden Ticket: In Series 1 we made one Willie-Wonka-inspired gold chrome card. The person who found it was sent this never-before-seen Melty Misfits painting by Buff Monster. For Series 2, there will be two Golden Tickets, redeemable for something unparalleled.
Series 2: Here are some of the tight pencil sketches for the second series. I don't want to give away too much right here, but once you pledge, I’ll be sending out tons of updates with tons of images.
Special Printing Techniques:
The $10K that I'm seeking to raise, along with the money I'm investing, will cover the base sets, boxes and everything else I've talked about. Any money pledged on top of the $10K goal will go towards special cards like foil cards and lenticulars (cards that look 3D). These cards are quite expensive to produce.
Naturally I’ve set up some great rewards for this campaign; check ‘em out! It’s a very time- and labor- intensive project and I'd love you to come along and be a part of it!
I've organized the reward packages into a variety of carefully- thought-out collections, but you might want to add-on a few extra goodies. Check out these items:
It's time for some stretch goals! I've talked to my printer about foil cards, and they're going to be awesome. We'll be using foil sticker stock, so these will be stickers just like the regular cards. Thanks to everyone who has pledged already! Now with these foil card stretch goals, everyone who pledged $40 or more will be getting 4 Kickstarter-Exclusive foil cards for every additional $1000 that gets pledged. If we get to $26K, there will be a full 40-card foil set! Sweet!!
Looking for an original painting from the first series of The Melty Misfits? We've added a couple as rewards! Check 'em out:
Risks and challenges
Seeing as we’ve done this before, we know what we’re getting ourselves into. We self-funded the first set and we know we can release a second set of cards. With this campaign, we really want to get others involved in the process and help make it even bigger than we could on our own.
Naturally there might be some delays along the way. We’ve made a production schedule and we’ll do our best to stick to it.
If you’d like to get some of the first series of The Melty Misfits, either for your collection, or to see the quality of the finished product, you may order them at themeltymisfits.com. Thanks!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
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