For a few years now, I’ve been making Wondermark Cast Cards – little commemorative plaques that memorialize special events and reader participation:
With this year’s end, so ends the program, so I thought this would be a good time to let everyone know how they might obtain some of the last few to be issued!
Here’s how they’re made – and which ones are still available:
• On our Patreon, subscribers at the $21 tier are entitled to a different unique card every month!
Patreon is a great way to contribute any amount to support the things you like to read, and the very kind folks who are able to contribute a higher amount are rewarded accordingly. Pictured above in the top row are the October, November, and December cards.
(Psst: I also posted a couple bonus comics to Patreon this week.)
There are still a few days to qualify for the December card if you like – just be in that tier by the end of the month. The December card is Bill Claus, from the holiday storyline a few years back.
And that’ll be it for the subscription tier! That tier will be morphing into something different in January.
• Then, there are two Wondermark Calendar-related cards: Sir Kel F. Finnt is awarded to anyone who gets a copy of this year’s calendar AND/OR a copy of the new The Elephant of Surprise mini-collection, both of which are still available while supplies last.
• If you qualify as a Calendar Ace (a patron of that product five or more times over the years), then don’t forget to claim that card as well when you make your order this year, if you haven’t already.
• And finally, there will be one last card in the spring, shipping with the next hardcover Wondermark collection, Friends You Can Ride On.
If you’ve reserved a copy of that book already thanks to backing our Kickstarter, then great! You’re all set.
If you missed the KS but would still like to secure a book (and card), I’ll reopen pre-orders via BackerKit in January, so you’ll have another chance! Watch for that in a few weeks.
How Cast Cards are made
It’s been a while since I first introduced Cast Cards, so I thought maybe it’s worth a little refresher of what they are and what goes into making them.
I wanted some kind of premium item to honor reader participation and accomplishments. Cast Cards are mini-commemorative plaques that each feature a character from the Wondermark cast on one side, with all their relevant “stats” on the back.
The base piece is laser-cut tempered hardboard (Masonite). Each blank is cut out of a sheet, and engraved on both front and back, by our giant industrial laser:
Each sheet of wood yields 44 blanks:
I lay out the artwork in Illustrator, then print out a set of 9 cards’ worth at a time onto label paper:
Then each individual piece is cut out with the laser! I used to do this part by hand, but why, when you have a laser???
This process creates a series of individual stickers.
I transfer each one onto a blank sheet of sticker backing paper – so they can be removed again – then match each front and back with a glossy gold foil cover sticker (rolls of which I had custom made):
The back is just a frame shape, while the front also has the WONDERMARK text in gold:
The gold foil is really the part that gives it the special touch, in my opinion! I’ll have to figure out what to do with the leftover gold stickers.
Then each combined sticker gets applied to a wooden blank, front and back sides both:
Yes, I custom-made a little form for my thumb to fit onto, because it was starting to hurt putting pressure on the corner of the roller over and over.
And the card is finished! The “feet” are cut separately – each card ships with a foot, of course, so it can stand up.
That’s the whole process! It is fun and satisfying but also elaborate and painstaking. I am happy to have done it for so long, but equally happy to try something new in the future. There will be 52 in all once all of these last few have been issued.
If you’d like to get ahold of any of the final few, now you know how! When I blog about anything related to these last couple, I’ll say CAST CARD AVAILABLE in big letters so you know.
And thanks once again to everyone who has participated so far. I hope you enjoy the ones you have!!