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Mike Shepherd's Blog (48)

American Autograph Graffiti

I recently had an opportunity to meet Mike Edmonds at Star Wars Celebration in London, England.  Mike played Logray the Ewok in Star Wars: Return of the Jedi.  I own a Logray animation cel from the Star Wars: Ewoks TV show.  I considered having him autograph it.

I had two concerns about having the animation cel autographed.  My first concern was the fact that the animation cel is original art.  My second concern was that Mike Edmonds was…


Added by Mike Shepherd on May 29, 2023 at 3:00pm — No Comments

How Far Would You Go? (Part 2)

I once asked how far an autograph collector would travel to achieve an autograph that they would like to add to their collection.  Our hobby creates great opportunities for us to travel.  Baseball fans are known to travel all over the country for the purpose of visiting ballparks in cities across America.  Why not autograph collectors as well?

My wife and I recently traveled to London, England.  We attended Star Wars Celebration there.  It was amazing.  Palm Sunday at St.…


Added by Mike Shepherd on April 28, 2023 at 8:22am — 4 Comments

Autograph Signing Conditions

I recently discovered that many celebrities have placed certain conditions on their signing habits.  Bono will not sign sheet music.  Robert Plant will not sign Led Zeppelin memorabilia.  Carl Weathers will not sign action figures.  This recent discovery is disappointing.

Roger Waters is happy to sign sheet music, but he may not…


Added by Mike Shepherd on March 24, 2023 at 10:30am — 2 Comments

Worth the Wait

Some time ago, I purchased a Steven Spielberg autograph on a 14x11 photograph that was taken during the making of Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom.  Harrison Ford was also in the photograph.  I asked Eric F at Skyline Signatures to hold the piece for me, and to work on adding Harrison Ford’s autograph to it as well.

One of my greatest weaknesses is that I am very particular about my autograph collection.  I insisted that Harrison Ford autograph the photograph with a blue…


Added by Mike Shepherd on February 11, 2023 at 1:00pm — 6 Comments

Lord of the Scribbles

I was recently looking through my Lord of the Rings autograph collection when something occurred to me.  Flipping through the pages of my ProFolio, I noticed that many of the autographs are terribly sloppy.  Unfortunately for autograph collectors, the more rare the signer is, the more sloppy the autograph is likely to be.



Added by Mike Shepherd on January 17, 2023 at 9:24am — 8 Comments

Criss-Crossing Autograph Inscriptions

Have you ever considered asking a celebrity to write an inscription that did not make sense?  For example, when I met Denis Lawson at Star Wars Celebration in 2017, I asked him if he would be willing to add CUT THE CHATTER to his autograph.  I explained that although I knew that the line was not delivered by Wedge Antilles in Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope, I wanted him to say it to me.  He laughed, and happily added it.

When I met Carl Weathers…


Added by Mike Shepherd on December 30, 2022 at 3:56pm — 3 Comments

What Are You Thankful For?

Family.  Friends.  Health.  Security.  We are thankful for so many things.  Dare I say autographs?  Let us have some fun with this question on Thanksgiving in the United States.  What about our hobby are you thankful for?

I am thankful for Star Wars Celebrations.  Where else can Star Wars fans meet so many people who share the same interests?  What about you?  What about autograph collecting are you thankful for?

Happy Thanksgiving!…


Added by Mike Shepherd on November 24, 2022 at 6:00am — 9 Comments

World Series or Bust

Autograph collectors often work on projects that require a tremendous amount of patience.  Adding multiple autographs to a single item has the potential to be both frustrating and rewarding, particularly if members of the group are difficult to acquire autographs from.

My favorite World Series teams have always been the 1977-1978 New York Yankees.  Unfortunately, acquiring all of the players’ autographs on a single item is impossible to accomplish in person today.  Catfish Hunter,…


Added by Mike Shepherd on October 28, 2022 at 9:00am — 2 Comments

Behind-the-Scenes Autograph Collecting

I finally had an opportunity to watch the Light & Magic documentary about Industrial Light & Magic on Disney+ on Saturday.  I highly recommend it to anyone interested in the history of film.

While watching the documentary, I began to reflect on the many amazing people who are involved in the art of filmmaking.  Many of those people are famous.  Many are not.  How common is it for autograph collectors to not only collect the autographs of their favorite actors and…


Added by Mike Shepherd on September 19, 2022 at 9:00am — 15 Comments

Pedigree Autograph Collections

Last month, I shared a story about the first autograph that I ever collected.  That got me thinking about all of the many people who have devoted decades to the hobby of autograph collecting.

Is there such a thing as a pedigree collection in the world of autograph collecting?  So many autograph collectors rely on third-party autograph authentication for peace of mind.  Would they feel even more secure about their autograph purchases if they knew that the autographs originated from…


Added by Mike Shepherd on August 29, 2022 at 11:00am — 9 Comments

Who Was Your First?

It was the summer of 1981.  My family and I were vacationing in Wildwood, New Jersey.  We were staying at the El Coronado Resort.  I noticed that there was a film crew in the pool area.  Phil Esposito and Sugar Ray Leonard were being interviewed.

I immediately ran to the lobby to ask for a piece of paper and a pen.  The woman behind the desk supplied me with my necessary autograph materials.  She knew exactly what this 11-year-old kid was up to.  She smiled as she handed them to me.…


Added by Mike Shepherd on July 25, 2022 at 10:30am — 14 Comments

A Thank You to Neal Adams

I had the pleasure of meeting comic artist and legend Neal Adams at New York Comic Con on October 6, 2016.  At the time, I had no idea what he charged for a commission.  I only knew how much I enjoyed his artwork on the covers of The House of Secrets.  I also told him that I would love for him to draw a picture of Swamp Thing for me.  Neal never illustrated the character of Swamp Thing, and I wanted to see his interpretation.

Neal seemed interested, particularly when I asked…


Added by Mike Shepherd on June 1, 2022 at 8:00am — 6 Comments

Setting Priorities

Another Star Wars Celebration just came to an end.  This time I only planned to get one autograph each day.  Four autographs total.  Katee Sackhoff would sign an action figure.  Carl Weathers would sign a photo.  Carey Jones would sign a comic.  Kelly Marie Tran would sign a photo.  Only planning to get one autograph each day would allow me to do many other things during the four days of Star Wars Celebration.

Everything was running smoothly until the fourth day.  I…


Added by Mike Shepherd on May 30, 2022 at 8:24am — No Comments

Premium Pricing

Remember the days when an autograph collector could attend a comic convention or a sports collectors convention, and pay one price for an autograph that could be placed on anything collectible?  Premium pricing did not exist.  Whether Mark Hamill autographed an 8x10 photo or a lightsaber, or whether Don Mattingly autographed a baseball card or a baseball bat, the cost was the same.  There was no charge for inscriptions.  Entertainers and athletes were happy to oblige.  What has happened to…


Added by Mike Shepherd on April 27, 2022 at 8:30am — 18 Comments

Cardograph Collecting

Have you ever considered collecting autograph trading cards?  Perhaps you already do collect them.  Whether you are interested in entertainment or sports, or interested in both, there are many options available to autograph collectors in the realm of autograph trading cards.

The interesting thing about collecting autograph trading cards is that the value of the autograph is not always what determines their actual value.  The value is more often determined by the rarity of the trading…


Added by Mike Shepherd on March 27, 2022 at 11:00am — 4 Comments


Ten years ago, Van Halen released A Different Kind of Truth, their first studio album with lead singer David Lee Roth since 1984.  That year, I befriended a coworker who was as much a fan of the band as I was.  His name was Nick, and he had been touring with the band for many years.  Prior to his trip to Louisville, Kentucky, for the first concert of the tour, I asked him if he would be willing to have Eddie Van Halen autograph a photo for me.  Nick was an autograph…


Added by Mike Shepherd on February 28, 2022 at 10:00am — 9 Comments

Playing Favorites

Whenever I am asked to name my favorite autograph in my autograph collection, I always answer that it is my Alfred Hitchcock autograph.  That has been my standard answer for many years.  There are, however, autographs in my autograph collection that I consider to be personal favorites, even though many autograph collectors may consider them to be unremarkable.  Regardless, I would never want to be without them.

The best example of an autograph in my autograph collection that is a…


Added by Mike Shepherd on January 17, 2022 at 7:30am — 17 Comments

Stuck on Autographs

Two years ago, I met Dominic Chianese at Westchester County Center in White Plains, New York.  My wife and I gave him a box of Italian pastries from Arthur Avenue in the Bronx. He was very appreciative and kind.  While he was enjoying his sfogliatella, I noticed some of the items that he was autographing.  Photographs of Johnny Ola and Uncle Junior.  He was also autographing sheets of small stickers.  I realized that the autographed stickers would one day appear on trading…


Added by Mike Shepherd on December 1, 2021 at 3:30pm — 9 Comments

Blank Slates

Many years ago, autograph collectors were content to carry an autograph book to events with the hope that they would encounter their favorite celebrities.  Many of those autograph books were filled with some of Hollywood’s greatest personalities.  They have since been torn apart and sold as individual items.

Years later, autograph books were replaced with index cards.  Autograph collectors would carry a certain quantity of index cards with the same hope.  That they would encounter…


Added by Mike Shepherd on November 29, 2021 at 8:30am — No Comments

Goals Not Met

Many years ago, I considered collecting the autographs of who I consider to be Gentlemen of Horror.  Many autograph collectors work on autograph projects that satisfy their interests.  Baseball fans collect the autographs of Hall of Famers.  Those who appreciate history collect the autographs of Presidents of the United States.  Fans of Hollywood collect the autographs of Oscar winners.  My list would not be as lengthy.  It would include only six names.

My plan was to begin with the…


Added by Mike Shepherd on October 26, 2021 at 10:00am — 11 Comments


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