Next Stop: Batty

Hangin' by a thread, here. I'm just sayin'.

Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Artist Trading Cards!!

My friend, Kate, has gorgeous red hair. That has nothing to do with this post, actually, but I intend to say nice things about Kate periodically because she's one of the six people who READ MY BLOG -- religiously. And here's another nice thing about her: she makes "crack potatoes." That's what one friend calls Kate's cheesy potato casserole because once you take a bite, your life becomes all about GETTING MORE. Damn that Kate, damn her! If only I had never tasted the crack potatoes!

And while we're on crack (well...not ON crack, but you know...), here's a little narcotic that my other pusher, Shelley, laid on me last week: ARTIST TRADING CARDS (ATCs). Oh, sweet Mary and Joseph, save me from the artist trading cards!

They work like this: people create little pocket-sized works of art, and then trade them all over the country (or the world?). Each piece must be the size of a baseball card, pokemon card, or other trading card (3.5"x2.5"), and anything goes. Photos, collages, paintings, drawings, doodles, etc... Here's the best part: the only way to get one of these little gems is to TRADE another little card for it for it. One can surf the web and fascinate oneself with as many cards as one likes, but one must break out one's CRAYONS (or whatever) to actually acquire an ATC.

It took me approximately five seconds to decide to make one. My girls and I used to play a game where one person makes a simple scribble on a page, and the other person has to find a picture in it and develop that picture. We've made some pretty whacky stuff. So, I decided to make my first cards using the scribble technique. Each card started as a scribble. It's a great way to let go and stop thinking so much. I love it when I don't have to think!

I had completed about a half dozen goofy cards when my girls (5 and 8) announced they wanted them (my biggest fans, those two!). "Well," I explained, "You can only get these by trading them. You have to make some cards."

GREAT! They loved the idea, and the three of us lost hours and days working on these little scribble masterpieces. Creating and trading original art with my girls -- what in the world could be better? I think my 8-year-old may even recycle some of her infernal Pokemon cards and cover 'em with tradable art. This makes Mommy happy. Makes Mommy want more. Damn crack cards.

(This is Carly's "Magic Window.")

Steve, who provided me with some of my scribbles, says he is going to have to make some cards because the girls keep getting his favorite ones of mine. If that guy sticks with me long enough, he'll be an artist yet! And if I keep working on his politics, why...he could be perfect before long.

You can find out a bunch about ATCs here. Or, google it. These cards provide a nice impetus to spend just 10 or 15 minutes doing something creative.

Taylor's "Dude."

I haven't traded any cards outside of my home yet. Want one you see here? MAKE ME A CARD! Fun, fun, fun.

I know! Why don't you come over? We can invite Kate, and she can bring her potato casserole. We can make art and get fat on cheese and potatoes together. Like smokin' crack, only WAAAY better.


At 9:37 AM, Blogger Shelley said...

I stayed up 'til 11:40pm making cards last night, and I work in a school! Isn't the pusher supposed to refrain from indulging? Oh well... this is one habit that's actually good for you!

At 3:00 PM, Blogger Chelle said...

Except for that lack of sleep thing!

At 8:15 AM, Blogger Stacy said...

Now I know what my weekend plans will be. I shared this with the art teacher at school and some of my favorite students.

At 7:44 AM, Anonymous treacy said...

i'm one of, no, i am tracy's BEST friend (accept no imitations though i'll defer in public to make others feel better because i am very secure in my position--i am THE philly tribe mate). all this to justify my scathing comments. so . . . . . . . . . .
the art cards sound cool, but what can one DO with them? a bunch of dust collecters? like i don't have enough 'stuff' to find a place for--the things my kids are creating every minute--like tape balls using all my household scotchtape, twistie airplanes (you know, from the breadbag twisties), wet toilet paper art. you get my drift. can we at least use them as postcards or notecards? sorry, i am the practical one.

At 5:29 AM, Blogger Tracy said...

Okay...maybe you WERE my best friend...until you INSULTED the genius beauty that is the ATC movement. What do you do with them?? You're so small-minded. (-: No, seriously, let me further try to convince you because I want you to MAKE SOME FOR ME!! Many people keep them in plastic sleeves in binders -- just like other trading cards. I intend to seek out ones that speak to me, make me happy, or make me think...and the TRY to get them by trading. Half the beauty of it is the hunt and the trade. The other half, of course, is the creativity. Making these is seriously fun. I have just signed up for a swap, where everyone completes 6 cards (in this particular swap, all the cards have to be in shades of red). I send 'em to the swap coordinator by a set deadline, and then I receive 6 DIFFERENT cards from the swap in the mail. Then, I put 'em in my binder and keep 'em or trade 'em -- like all trading cards. Cool? I mean, is that cool or WHAT?? Also cool is spending time creating something with the end goal of giving it away to someone else. Love you anyway.

At 7:21 AM, Anonymous Kathy said...

Hey, I'm in. A little intimidated (I suffer from lack of vision AND skill) - but in. When am I coming over? And do the potatoes have corn flakes on top? Soaked in butter? And then baked crispy? I'll bring wine. Mmmmmmmmm. cheesy potatoes, art, booze and friends. sounds perfect. We might need some chocolate.

At 5:32 AM, Blogger Stacy said...

So I looped my boy into the fun and we traded with the art teacher this morning. And I am trading with my students. That and the bubble-blowing makes me happy about the state of my world. And when it's all said and done, that's all I can control.

At 12:07 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

it's pretty annoying to keep checking the blogspot and finding nothing new! if you are gonna whine about people taking the time to read it you should take the time to write it!!!!!!!!!!!!

At 5:39 AM, Blogger ATCLindaB said...

I also make and trade ATC, please feel free to email me


At 1:40 PM, Anonymous long lost kathy said...

Hey tracy. I´m looking for new news. Where is my entertainment and inspiration. And, furthermore, I sent you an email and it came back. I think I have the wrong email address. Email me, my friend. I miss you. Ka

At 6:35 PM, Blogger (Ni)mo.Ni said...

Trading cards..OMG that is BEYOND cool!

I've always had an obsession with trading cards of all sorts (yes, I am of the pokemon era).

Such a cool idea for my next babysitting job!!

At 4:35 PM, Blogger Diana said...

Artist Trading Cards are individual art miniatures which pass hand to hand. Their current popularity among artists and hobbyists was sparked by M. Vänçi Stirnemann, who began trading sessions in Zurich, Switzerland, in 1997, and popularized ATCs via the internet.
Artists have produced miniatures for trade or self-promotion in many eras and places, and the current trend is thus part of this larger context. Nevertheless, at the present time, the phrase Artist Trading Card is usually taken to refer to cards of the type promoted by Stirnemann. The only rule for these cards is their size (2.5 x 3.5 inches, the same as commercial trading cards, such as baseball cards and cards for trading card games). There are, however, certain conventions usually observed by those who make and trade these cards, such as the expectation that they be traded, not sold, sportsbook, and that they be created as unique works or small limited editions of prints. Artists generally sign and date the back, and may also include a title and contact information. The face-to-face trading session is considered an integral part of the concept, although many people find each other via the internet and trade by mail.
Artist Trading Cards are typically made on a base of card stock. However, ATCs have been created on metal, stiffened fabric, plastic, clay, glass, balsa wood, leather, embroidery canvas, acetate, heavy watercolor paper, and many other materials. The art on the cards can be done in any media: textile arts, pencil, watercolor, acrylic, oil, collage, scratch board, mixed media, assemblage, digital art, calligraphy, beadwork, rubber stamps, carved soft block stamps, pen and ink, colored pencil, airbrush, pastels, and many others - anything artists use.

At 6:00 AM, Blogger kimberly sayer said...

ARTIST TRADING CARDS are miniature works of art created on 2 ½ X 3 ½ inch or 64 X 89 mm card stock. they are originals, small editions and, most importantly, self-produced.costa rica fishinganybody can produce them.the idea is that you trade them with other people who produce cards, either at TRADING SESSIONS or wherever you meet another ATC trader in person.

At 12:37 PM, Blogger britney sayers said...

Artist Trading Cards is the amazing response to this exciting art collecting phenomena.Artist Trading Cards (3.75 x 2.5) or Credit-Card-Sized Gift Cards.Costa rica toursFollowing is a template you can use to create envelopes for the popular. Artist Trading Cards are a great way to share your stamped art using a small.

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