The Daily Artist: Artistic Curveballs and Future Stars - Confessions of Collector

The Daily Artist: Artistic Curveballs and Future Stars -  Confessions of Collector

If I recall correctly, the person who bought today’s featured painting upon purchasing asked, "lol, why did you paint that?" Thankfully, he also added the caveat that he loved it. His question is a question that probably crosses many people's minds when they see my art, though. But you know what? That thought actually brings me joy because there's always a reason behind every piece I create.

To find the answer the Jefferies inquiry, my journey into collecting baseball cards began in 1988. I had just transferred to a new school, and some of the kids there brought their cards for trading. I was immediately drawn to the activity, even though I didn't have any cards of my own.

A few days later, while we were at the mall as a family, I spotted a box filled with packs of baseball cards at Walgreens. I eagerly handed them to my mom, giving her my best "please?" look. She pulled out a quarter and paid for them. That's when I knew I was officially in the game, and the excitement was frantic. I couldn’t wait to go to school the next day!

When I went back to school and showed my cards to the other kids, one of them asked, "Score?" I had no clue what he meant at the time. It turned out that I had bought the "wrong" kind of cards. It took a while for the trading circle to process this new specimen, but eventually, they thought my cards were cool, and that marked the beginning of my card-collecting journey.

I got completely hooked. I would spend hours studying price guides and exploring cards from previous years, especially the vintage ones. Looking back, I now realize that my intense focus on collecting was likely influenced by my undiagnosed ADHD. If anyone needed to know the value and condition of a card, they would come to me, and I could provide the information without hesitation.

In 1988, there was a lot of buzz surrounding Greg Jefferies. His card became a highly coveted item among us kids, including myself. I managed to accumulate a few of them. It's funny because back then, it was probably only worth a whole two bucks, but in fifth grade, that felt like a fortune. Despite the Jefferies hype not living up to our expectations, his "Future Stars" card still brings a smile to my face. So, yes, why wouldn't I want to immortalize it in my art? He was the future!

-Sergio Santos