1987 Topps All-Star Rookie: Jose Canseco (Giant Gum Stick)
Original baseball card art
In 1987, Topps turned back the clock 25 years with a wood grain design reminiscent of 1962. They also had another idea... they brought back the All-Star Rookie cup, which was last used in 1978. I think Jose Canseco had a lot to do with those decisions.
Here's my theory: Canseco was the hottest player on the planet, and his Donruss Rated Rookie was dominating the landscape of the hobby... being sold at record breaking prices. So, Topps needed a card and an icon to compete. Hence, they paired the young slugger with their historic trophy cup.
More about my giant sticks of Topps Chewing Gum
The last card inside a junk era wax pack would often get stuck to, or stained by, the piece of gum inside. My childhood memories of chewing hard sticks of bubble gum became the inspiration for making these large scale gum sticks. My gum sticks are typically tilted by 9 degrees, as a nod to the starting 9 on the diamond.
- My gum stick paintings are done on plywood as homage to the game's wooden bats. I hand bevel the wood with a router to create the proper shape, which also captures highlights on the edges and supplies nice drop shadows on the wall.
- The sticks are painted with my own multi-layer technique, making them look realistic.
- Each gum stick measures 12" x 36" and is designed to hang on a rotated angle of 9 degrees. This represents how the gum is typically positioned imperfectly inside the package.
- Each painting ships ready to hang, with hardware already installed.
- A printed and signed description of the artwork will be attached to the back prior to shipping.
- All pieces are original artwork by yours truly, Matthew Lee Rosen.