Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Two ATC Posts

My first ATC trade for March was a quick trade Mayan mask theme. I found this Mayan head in an old art text. After trying it out on several backgrounds , I decided this black and white op-art was the best fit. I especially like the way the black and white appeared in the eyes. I sent the card off in the hand made envelope below.

The second trade of March was a pattern card. My trade partner likes kaleidoscopes, so I wanted to use the patterns in the form of a kaleidoscope. Along the way of experimenting, I thought of a Victorian puzzle purse as an extension of the pattern theme. I have never before now made a puzzle purse that did not start with a square piece of paper. Rather than cut of the extra parts under the top folds, I had to adjust the folds so that the purse would open to show the pattern on the inside. After a lot of trial and error, this is what came to be.

I made tight creases on the inside folds so that it easily collapses back into the shape of the card.

I sent this trade in a single sheet folded into an origami envelope. I created the page on the computer. I used this paper, because I felt that the collage fit with the pattern theme of the trade.These envelopes generally make it through the postal machinery, but sometimes they get chewed up. I usually ask the post office to hand stamp these types of envelopes and hand sort them. They will often hand cancel but then throw them into the sorter anyway.

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

February Mail Art and ATCs

Because I have been so busy doing family history/genealogy work and scanning family photos all winter, I have not done any mail art or artist trading cards since last Fall. I started to swap again in February with some Valentine ATCs, a decorated paper trade, and a mail art swap. Here are my little creations:
This is the envelope (front and back) that I decorated for the paper trade. The decorated envelope was not part of the trade, but I like to do mail art whenever I have some time to do it. My wife says it is a little too much to decorate the return envelopes when I send out the bills. I only do that once in a while. I had to ad another 

The theme for the first Valentine ATC trade I did this year was to alter a King, Queen, or Jack of Hearts playing card. Several years ago, I found two movie star (Clark Gable and Greta Garbo) playing cards on the internet. The cards were of diamonds, so I already had to alter them to use them in the trade. I cut out the heads and the bars with their names on them and pasted those pieces on the hearts cards. Only one card was required for the swap, but a king must have a queen, and since I had the two movie stars, I made a pair, and added a couple of heart "jewels" to them. I also made the envelope in which to send them, which was also not required for the swap..

Below is the second Valentine ATC trade and its envelope. I used to make the word collage heart. My swap partner said on her profile that hot pink was one of her favorite colors, so I colored one of my op-art backgrounds with a high lighter and added a tiny jewel heart at the center of one of the spirals. I tiled the tagxedo heart on an 8½ X 11 piece of copy paper, folded the envelope, and added a few other things.

The following envelope was for a thank you note. I made the stamp, showing my grandson, at Each stamp costs twice as much as a regular first class stamp, but it is worth it for a special letter when the recipient knows "my" baby.

The purple dots look a little like Mickey Mouse ears. By the way, if you happen to see this young lady at Disneyland, beware. She is one of the pick-pockets from the 1630 French painting, The Fortune Teller, by Georges de La Tour. I have used her as a decoration many times. Thanks, Georges.