Bay's Travel Blog

I don't travel much any more. Resist!

Saturday, July 02, 2005

Art lessons

Artist Trading Cards are all the rage among savvy paper crafters, and while I may not be particularly talented, I am nothing if not enthusiastic. Several weeks ago, I opened an ATC swap for 14 participants, and I was supposed to be able to sort and resend the cards to everyone Thursday.

But life never turns out the way I expect it to, and some ATC's didn't arrive on time. Some seem to be missing -- from *my* house. (Ack!!!) And some had to be FedEx'ed to NYC quite suddenly when one of the participants was honored to have two of her designs picked up for publishing.

All these hiccups have taught me some valuable lessons. For one, I need to be more communicative with my swap participants, if I ever host another one.

Most notably, I need to be totally specific about *why* I asked them to include SASE's. A few participants simply sent postage or postage and a label. What I didn't make clear is that the tiny post office here in my itty-bitty town hardly ever has Priority Mail envelopes on hand. In order to get padded envelopes for the cards, I'll have to go to Loudon and load up on envies.

But, man, I can't complain about the people who didn't send envelopes this time. I was very casual about that SASE part of the swap. I didn't explain why I needed the whole shebang. They went to work for hours to create gorgeous, amazing cards, and they followed the usual sorts of rules and included postage.

Besides, the cards I've received really are gorgeous, and one of 'em is going to be published -- so I totally lucked out in the inspiration department!

Above I've included my own prototype for my cards. The theme for this swap was "favorites," because if I had re-mailed the cards on time, they would've arrived at everyone's house just after Independence Day, my favorite holiday. So my cards feature my favorite fun sayings stamps. I adore good sayings. The one on my prototype is the one I use the most on snail mail -- "Let me know if you do not receive this." Subtle, low-key, easily missed -- and right up my alley. The only one I love more is "No soup for you," but I've used that stamp so much that it's missing right now. Sigh.

Next time I hold an ATC swap, I'll be more specific about the SASE stuff, and in the meantime, I'm consoling myself with the new ATC stamp that I got in the last Club Stamp pizza box. Annnnnnnd... the "I Can't Drive 55" stamp that I rediscovered. Annnnnnd... the nifty little mulberry paper flowers that Club Stamp sent in May.... Annnnnnnd... my deep and abiding love for all things covered in ModPodge... Oo, that reminds me -- gotta go create something!


At 3/7/05 7:06 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

{sigh}. Here is my confession: Bay, I am guilty of not sending you postage on the SASE. I feel terrible, although it was totally unintentional. You did such a nice job with this swap, and I had so much fun making the ATC's. I'll slap myself on the wrist for you. :)
Stef Hamilton


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