Brewers Fantasy Camp and SABR: Baseball Fun in Phoenix

A Winter Trip to the Sun with Painted Gloves

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The Milwaukee Brewers Fantasy Camp hosted me at their annual event this year and I brought along a couple of gloves especially for the occasion.

First off was a baseball glove painting featuring Brewers (and Red Sox) great, Cecil Cooper. I incorporated two portraits, including one of him batting, onto the vintage Rawlings pro model first base mitt. The painting process can be seen here.

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Cecil had high praise for my work, mentioning this is just like a glove he used during his playing days. He shared some personal thoughts, which were quite touching.

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The glove was won in a raffle by a happy Fantasy Camper, for whom Coop signed the glove -- right where I thought an autograph would look best. Now that's a keepsake!

Raffle proceeds went toward the Camp's charity this year, the ALS Association.

I also painted a leather mini-glove, only about 6-inches tall, with the Brewers Fantasy Camp logo. Mini-glove details here.

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This glove artwork was for Fantasy Camp director, current Brewers TV broadcaster and former catcher, Bill Schroeder, pictured below.  Bill has a keen interest in the history of the game and it was a treat to get to meet and talk with him.

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My other generous host was photographer and Camp newsletter editor, Rick Ramirez, who expertly snapped great action shots even while talking with me in foul territory!

It also happened to be SABR Day while I was in Phoenix, the nationwide annual celebration of all things baseball by the Society of American Baseball Research.

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I was invited to present my work at the Phoenix chapter event, held in the press box at Tempe Diablo Stadium, Spring home of the LA Angels.  I received a very warm reception to my work plus some interesting questions from the group and got to meet some passionate fans -- my favorite.

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SABR Executive Director, Marc Appleman and Rodney Johnson, Flame Delhi chapter president.

The SABR Day event also featured a wide-ranging debate between baseball writers and Hall of Fame voters Barry Bloom and Tony DeMarco regarding Hall of Fame voting.

A new series of handsome panels at Diablo Stadium depicting and recalling the history of the Cactus League was on display (opens in Facebook).  And I received some promising insights from Shoeless Joe Jackson researcher, Jacob Pomrenke, about a 100 year old glove I'll be using for an upcoming project, too.

Being in Phoenix provided a chance to reconnect with a friend, John, who researches Negro Leagues baseball history. His current projects include compiling a collection of baseball cards of Negro Leagues players.

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The Bowman 1952 cards are so nice, with crisp, illustrated player portraits. An amazing collection like this deserves a much better photo. They were beautiful and the stories behind each would fill many more hours.

A few days spent with Fantasy Campers, seeing them play ball, visiting with many major leaguers and team personnel, sharing my work with so many baseball people and hearing such kind words about what I'm doing -- all under clear skies and 80 degree temps-- It was a baseball experience that'll be tough to beat.

The biggest of thanks to the Milwaukee Brewers Fantasy Camp.

Painting a Baseball Glove: Step-by-Step Look at the Portrait Process

A Peek at Where all the Hours Go

Photo by  DaviesPhoto.ca

This Painted Glove featuring Cecil Cooper was especially time-intensive, easily topping the 40 hour mark.

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Completing this work included: researching the glove he used, finding an available glove, selecting which career highlights to feature, locating reference photos (one of which was supplied, thankfully), designing all of these elements around the landscape of the vintage Rawlings first base mitt, then getting down to painting and hand-lettering. Whew!

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Here's a look at how it all came together using acrylic paints and some pretty tiny brushes.

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First blocking in the areas to be painted.

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Getting the iconic Brewers color scheme and placement worked out.

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First strokes of the portrait, with accurate placement of features of primary concern at this stage.

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Getting started on the hat details.

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Finally getting there!

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There was a second batting stance portrait added on the thumb.

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Ready for the small lettering now.

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What a career!

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Cecil was very complimentary about how it turned out.

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And one lucky Milwaukee Brewers Fantasy Camp participant got to take this keepsake home, signed by Coop.

Now back to the drawing board and the next painted glove...  Thanks for taking a look.

 

Jackie Robinson Hand-Painted Baseball Glove

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A One-of-a-Kind Baseball Artwork Featuring Jackie Robinson

This hand-painted baseball glove features Jackie Robinson and highlights his rookie year of 1947 when he broke baseball's color barrier.

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During his debut in 1947, becoming the first African American in the 20th century to play major league baseball, Jackie Robinson hit .297 and led the National League with 29 stolen bases. The Brooklyn Dodgers won the National League pennant that year and Robinson was awarded Rookie of the Year.

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The vintage glove used for this artwork is a 1940's Spalding model MO.  

This glove is about 11 inches wide by 9.5 inches tall. 

The front side features a hand-painted portrait of Jackie Robinson. The portrait is a bit bigger than the size of a baseball, painted with professional artist-grade acrylic paint.

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The front also references Jackie's famous number 42 and career highlights, including the 1949 NL MVP and his election to the Hall of Fame in 1962.

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The back side of the glove includes a painting of a sliding Jackie Robinson.   

The backdrop to this image is a nod to the scoreboard at Ebbets Field, the famed home stadium of the Brooklyn Dodgers.  A peek at what the Ebbets Field scoreboard looked like is here (opens in a new page).

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The back also includes career stats and personal info and a quote attributed to Jackie Robinson. Plus a nice Spalding label on the glove strap.

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Detail of Jackie Robinson portrait.

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This Glove art is sold.

It's among nearly two-dozen painted gloves created over the years that have been collected into this portfolio book, "Sean Kane Baseball Art", Available HERE.

Sean Kane Baseball Art: Paintings of Ballpark Heroes on Classic Baseball Gloves

Sean Kane Baseball Art: Paintings of Ballpark Heroes on Classic Baseball Gloves

Interested in a baseball glove painting? I can create custom glove art.  Just Let Me Know.

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Sean Kane's painted baseball glove art has been exhibited at the Negro Leagues Baseball Museum in Kansas City and has been the subject of a solo gallery show in New York City, and is in private collections across the U.S.

His glove paintings have been featured on ESPN.com, NBC Sports.com, and MLB Network Radio. Clients include the Philadelphia Phillies and Milwaukee Brewers Fantasy Camp.

Sean has been a professional artist for over 20 years and a baseball fan since he was old enough to wear his dad's old mitt.  More info >