A few weeks ago a buddy of mine came over and brought me a ton of 1989 Fleer packs to open. Yes, those packs, the ones with the original “F*ck Face” card.
I didn’t just pull one F*ck Face–I pulled two! Creating a nice piece from this card wasn’t going to be easy. There were some easy paths I could take, but I didn’t consider any of them worthy of a card of this magnitude. This was definitely a go big or go home sort of challenge.
I started with a red glitter backing and then carefully cut and applied silver glitter strips to mimic the gray and white vertical striping of the actual 1989 Fleer backgrounds. I also replaced the orange diagonal bands with gold to add to the sparkle. The “FLEER” logo on the real card was too drab so I used the red crown logo off a 1989 Fleer sticker.
The final challenge was to put a name on the card. F*ck Face depicts Bill Ripken, but F*ck Face transcends Bill Ripken. When you really think about it, F*ck Face is the iconic Fleer card. Just as Griffey became the face of Upper Deck in 1989, so too did Bill Ripken, inadvertently or not, become the face of Fleer.
Thus “Fleer Face” was born. The blue Fleer clown comes from the cello pack box I opened to get the cards, and the “F-A-C-E” letters come from a 1982 Topps Future Stars card in honor of Bill’s brother’s rookie.
I haven’t decided yet what to do with this card. Keeping with the spirit of things I will definitely turn it into a fundraiser, probably auction style, but I might keep it on my desk for a few days just to enjoy it a bit before I let it go.