Monday, April 26, 2010

ATC's: Why I Love Making Them and Receiving Them!

 The cards in this group came from a wonderful group of very talented women. 
The theme of the swap is "Warped". 
Bottom Row (L to R): Suzan Morgan, and Linda Edkins Wyatt (2 cards)

After seeing some of the ATC's that I have made and sent away to new homes I thought that it would be fun for you to see the ATC's that have been sent to me. It may help to explain why I have become so infatuated with these small works of art - and why I seem to be spending more and more time making them and building my own collection!

Fist a little background - from the information files at Wikipedia:

"...Artist Trading Cards (or ATCs) are miniature works of art about the same size as modern baseball cards, or 2 ½ X 3 ½ inches (6 cm X 9 cm), small enough to fit inside standard card-collector pockets, sleeves or sheets. The ATC movement developed out of the mail art movement and has its origins in Switzerland. Cards are produced in various media, including dry media (pencils, pens, markers, etc.), wet media (watercolor, acrylic paints, etc.), paper media (in the form of collage, papercuts, found objects, etc.). The cards are usually traded or exchanged rather than sold.

Artist trading cards were used throughout Europe and America as art training tools. Artists would trade the cards between themselves to study each others techniques and explore new art movements. The cards paid a particularly important role in the Impressionists art movement. The Impressionists utilized both sides of their artist trading cards, art on one side and a kind of brief resume on the other. The Impressionists were the first known artists to use the cards in trade for anything other than more art. Impressionists often traded the cards with art collectors in exchange for room, board, and art supplies.
M. Vänçi Stirnemann is credited in many circles with popularizing the modern artist trading card in 1996,holding trading sessions in Zurich, Switzerland. This resurgence of interest of Artists trading cards has spawned the popular ACEO (art cards editions and originals) movement. Many people consider art trading cards and ACEO cards to be one and the same. Others feel they are decidedly different pieces of art. Clubs, trading sessions, and online mailart communities have largely replaced the original concept of trading the cards during individual encounters, and many ATC workshops end with a trading session...."

Above: The amazing cards are from my friend, Julie Wildman
Below:  a felted card from Sara Figal

The card below was made by Debra Benedict is one of the most beautifully put together cards I have ever seen! It was from a swap on Roses On My Table and the theme was: Alice In Wonderland

Below - another fabulous card from the "Alice In Wonderland Swap" - made by Elizabeth Matthews

More from the Alice In Wonderland Swap.

Top row (L to R):  Astrid Maclean and Corinne Marie
Bottom row (L To R): Mariette and Kathy Noble
The ATC below, made by Donna Funnell, 
is one of my favorites of all - it's rich, rich, rich in detail 
and includes felting, embroidery and most yummy colors imaginable !

Below: This unusual card - I love the shaped effect!- was made by Darlene Pringle

These cards were made through a swap with the theme 
'Mandala' though the Yahoo Group Soul Journaling.

This lovely card was also made by Diane Bishop Carey (see above) from the "Mandala" swap.
This group of cards were some of the first that I ever received. I had no idea when I began making and swapping trading cards how difficult they can be to make; how working within a theme can really test your abilities (eerhhhhh - rather should I say that they can expand your horizons!); how utterly addictive they can become - or how many wonderful techniques there are to experiment with. This size can be a challenge - but the results are so worth it !

The group below:
Top  (L to R):
Heather Robinson   (when I swapped with Heather I knew nothing about making ATC's really - the swap with her was the beginning of my obsession!)

Bottom (L to R): Victoria O'Neill, Terri Stegmiller, Ann Tyler

This is the simple way that I store my ATC's - just a three 3 ting binder with protector sheets. Some of the thicker or larger pieces need protector sheets that hold photos instead. I love paging through this book, adding to it and participating in swaps. I learn so much in making ATC's - and I think that they have really helped me expand my technique "tool box" . I also really enjoy looking at the early trades I have done - like the one I did with Heather Robinson - it helps me to keep tract of how much I have grown my making these small, wonderful little works of art !  Hope you have had fun enjoying all of this eye-candy. I could have added pages and pages of photographs to this list. There are so many that I want to share - I plan to do another post so that you can see the work of more artists soon. One person who is a driving force in my lust for ATC art is Christina Zinna Galliher. Her site, Roses On My Table, is a fabulous place, the women are wonderful and Christina does an amazing, job keeping us all on the go. Her work will be showcased in the next ATC post !

I would love to know your ATC


phonelady said...

I love them but I have no artistic talent in my body . they are beautiful.

imquilternity said...

Wow. I'm actually speechless (for a change!). Those are some spectacular ATCs. Wow.

Robin said...

Wow, Marie! How fun to see these! It's perfectly obvious why you'd want to collect and swap. You've got some real gems! I'd love to see them in person... any chance? Oh, and thanks for the artist links!

Loved catching up, reading back through your posts... aprons, kitty, shawl... all fabulous!

Robin A.

Edzellinni said...

Wow! What a bunch of treasures! I ADORE the alice in wonderland / roses tea group. And I'm honored to have my stuff on your blog. The collection somehow looks entirely different on your page than in my ATC book (which has plastic slip in sleeves, 9/page) What cool, cool stuff!! Just when I am mulling over the idea of going bigger I'm falling in love with small again. :-)

Jeannie said...

Amazing artwork Marie! Thank you so much for sharing such inspiring work.

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