Tuesday, August 31, 2010


Gulp. I've been reading about Artist's Trading Cards (ATCs) for years, and admiring the work done by many artists around the world, but frankly, kind of not getting it.

There are some art forms, I have to admit, that either don't make sense to me or seem beyond the scope of my abilities. ATCs have been the latter for me.

And then a dear someone actually sent me one. I have it propped up in front of my place at the table where I see it every day. It draws my eye ad makes me smile.

Oh, yeah. Who wouldn't smile?

Now, technically, I guess this isn't an ATC, because it's bigger than the required dimensions (2 1/2" X 3 1/2"; 6.4 X 8.9cm, the size of a standard playing card), but it's small, and it's art, and it draws me. I started thinking, Well, maybe I could do that!

You know what comes after that thought, don't you? Yup. From there you have to progress to, "I'm gonna try it!"

But where to start? How do I begin? Flutter-flutter thoughts. Stymied, I was. Then I got a clue: Artist's Trading Cards! These are created for the purpose of sharing, trading, swapping, and that being true, there would be places where you could find people doing that. Could I join up with them?

Over on MizMollye's blog, I found a button leading to Blissfull ATC Swap. Ooooh, beautiful. But daunting. Not a place for a rank beginner to, well, begin.

Enter SwapBot. This totally cool website is a clearinghouse for people who want to swap things--postcards, crafting supplies, handmade items of all sorts, and yes, ATCs! I'd joined ages ago, but never did any swaps. This time I looked for and found an ATC swap, with birds as the theme.

I am on it! I am in it! And the creative juices are flowing, and I can't wait to get started!

Now tell me, have you ever created an ATC? I would adore it if you'd leave a link in the comments and let me see yours!


Lonesome Road Studio said...

I often use embellishments on my art cards, like these:

I've also done a few based on concepts from IllustrationFriday.com -
have fun with your ATCs!

MOLLYE said...

Oh that is so funny I was looking on FB and saw Harrison Ford and though hmmmmmmm I made an ATC of him one day and I looked closer and saw that it was the one I made!

And you go girl, you will be a whiz at ATC's. They are sooooo addictive. I have done many swaps on Swapbot and do not be intimidated on Blissful ATC's, as one of the gals who started the bloggy was totally NEW to ATC's. Anything goes as long as they are the correct size. And one other thing, you never never sell an ATC. They're for sharing only. You sell the ACEO's which are the same size. One is for trading and one is for selling. Easy peasy. Miss and love you, Mollye

Splendid Little Stars said...

I'm sure anything you make would be beautiful! seriously. I made an ATC once at a stamping show--a make it and take it. I will have to try swapbot. That will be sometime after I catch up on everything I've been behind on for the last half year, including a certain book.
Do show us what you make!

tamdoll said...

ATCs are something I always felt left out of. I once did a swap, forcing myself to create a bunch - but only that once. I was stuck for an idea until I decided to use what I was familiar with -- I edited one of my doll's pictures to fit to the correct size, printed it in color and embellished the heck out if it. It was a lot of fun and getting the ones other swapped for it was a blast.

storybeader said...

I've always been drawn to ATCs too, but never could get myself to make the right size. But I've come up with a solution: Make a "whatever" - for me it's a collage, and then cut the ATC card out of your finished piece. I love taking a smaller bit out of something larger!

majeral said...

These remind me of when i did Rubberstamping and we did cards and handed them out at shows. What fun.. ohI have about 4K stamps for sale any buyers?

Jessica said...

Ooh, Indy... :) i've been making ATCs for a couple years, but have only now started trading them. They're fun, quick little pieces of art. Well, quick for most people, maybe - as with most arts/crafts, i spend way too much time on a project, overthinking, redoing... Oh, well, at least i'm having a blast doing it!

(swapbot blogger swap - bluemonkeymama)

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