Wednesday, April 23, 2014

"Letter S" scavenger hunt - part 3

I think this just might be the last of the letter S cards.
(maybe? possibly?  unless you tell me yours is still in transit after 10 days?)
This has been a ton of fun.
How many S's can you find in the following post cards?


Three from Alyssa:



 Three from Bonnie:




Two from Crystal:


One from Eric:


One from Faith:


Two from Gina:


 One from Honi:

One from Janice:


Two from Jo:



Two from Joyce:



Two from Julie:



Two from Leslie:



One from Nancy:


Three from Rose:



Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Watercolor postcards - Due May 12th


Next in our series of “Technique” swaps....
Use watercolor paints to create a postcard.   

Hopefully most of you already have a set of watercolors kicking around somewhere.  These don’t need to be “artist grade” paints.  One of those rows of kids’ watercolors is fine .  The point of this series of swaps is to expand our repertoires, challenge our assumptions, broaden our horizons, and maybe pick up a few new skills along the way.  (It’s not about spending money and accumulating new stuff.)

You may incorporate a bit of one other media into your card (such as pen, ink, pencil) but keep the focus of your work on watercolor technique.

Don’t feel like you need to paint something representational.  Abstract is fine.  Or create a collage using a variety of watercolor painted papers.

Any type of watercolor media is acceptable:  liquid, pan or tube watercolors, or watercolor pencils or crayons.  If you have more than one type of watercolor media you could try combining them.

As for your substrate – it’s up to you.  Obviously watercolor paper is probably the easiest thing to work with since it’s designed for this media.  Absorbent surfaces take watercolors much better than smooth papers like cardstock.  But you can experiment.  Use what you have and see how it reacts.  Perhaps you’ll love the effect you get on a non-traditional surface.  (Or how about using the humble paper towel?  I bet you could create a lovely layered collage of painted paper towels.)

Experiment.  Have fun with it.  If anyone has any favorite on-line watercolor tutorials leave the link in the comments, or send me an email.


Swap details:
  • You may submit as many as  four cards  (you will get back the same number you send)
  • if you're sending me more than one, please make sure you insert waxed paper or parchment in between the cards so they don't get stuck together in the envelope
  • write “MMSA watercolors” on the back of your card to remind your recipient why they are receiving this wonderful work of art in the mail
  • write your return address on the back of the postcard (in case of postal delivery problems) and your email address so the recipient can thank you. 

  • Add a note for your partner.  You could share something about yourself, or describe how you made your postcard, or share a favorite quote or joke.
  • include a mailing label with your name and address for each card you create
    (I will attach them to the cards I mail back to you)
  • Please attach the proper postage to your postcard (see below for postal guidelines).  If you don’t have any stamps and it’s difficult for you to get some, go ahead and send me money instead.  You can stick cash in the envelope, or send it to me via paypal (iamrushmore@gmail.com)

  • international swappers are welcome - the postage cost is $1.15 per card (paypal account is iamrushmore@gmail.com)

Postage and Card Size
You are welcome to make any size postcard you want, but please pay attention to the following postal guidelines
  • In order to use the postcard rate ($.34) your card cannot be bigger than 4.25 x 6 inches, and it must be thin and flexible.  A 4x6 card that is thick, lumpy or doesn't bend, needs more postage

  • If your card is a rectangle bigger than a postcard, but still flat and flexible, a regular "forever" ($.49 ) stamp is what you need.
  
  • If your card is an unusual shape (square, round) or is flexible but has some lumpy embellishments it will probably cost you the "non machinable" rate of $.70

  • If your card doesn't bend at all, the post office considers it a package and you should go get it weighed to figure out the proper postage.
You can find all the postal specifications (and a handy postage calculator) here:  http://postcalc.usps.gov/

Mail your cards no later than May 12th. (I don’t need to receive them by the 12th, they need to be postmarked by the 12th.)

Karen Isaacson
PO Box 532
Shrewsbury, MA 01545
United States

Monday, April 21, 2014

Recycled postcards - due May 5th

Time to raid your recycling bin!  Create a postcard using items that would typically be tossed away - things most people would never consider to be art supplies.  This might include junk mail, catalogs, food packaging, bills, old homework, grocery lists, etc.

The base of your postcard should be something from your recycle bin as well.  Cut up a cereal box.  Cover up one of those advertising postcards. Get creative.   Someone once sent me a collage on a flattened holder from a six-back of beer bottles. 

It would be great if everything on your card came from the recycling bin, but if you really want to add some paint or crayon or marker, go ahead.  (But you’re on your honor not to use any images or text or papers that weren’t already destined for recycling.)



Swap details:

  • You may submit as many as  four cards  (you will get back the same number you send)

  • if you're sending me more than one, please make sure you insert waxed paper or parchment in between the cards so they don't get stuck together in the envelope

  • write “MMSA recycled postcard” on the back of your card to remind your recipient why they are receiving this wonderful work of art in the mail

  • write your return address on the back of the postcard (in case of postal delivery problems) and your email address so the recipient can thank you. 


  • Add a note for your partner.  You could share something about yourself, or describe how you made your postcard, or share a favorite quote or joke.

  • include a mailing label with your name and address for each card you create
    (I will attach them to the cards I mail back to you)

  • Please attach the proper postage to your postcard (see below for postal guidelines).  If you don’t have any stamps and it’s difficult for you to get some, go ahead and send me money instead.  You can stick cash in the envelope, or send it to me via paypal (iamrushmore@gmail.com)



  • international swappers are welcome - the postage cost is $1.15 per card (paypal account is iamrushmore@gmail.com)



Postage and Card Size
You are welcome to make any size postcard you want, but please pay attention to the following postal guidelines

  • In order to use the postcard rate ($.34) your card cannot be bigger than 4.25 x 6 inches, and it must be thin and flexible.  A 4x6 card that is thick, lumpy or doesn't bend, needs more postage



  • If your card is a rectangle bigger than a postcard, but still flat and flexible, a regular "forever" ($.49 ) stamp is what you need.





  • If your card is an unusual shape (square, round) or is flexible but has some lumpy embellishments it will probably cost you the "non machinable" rate of $.70



  • If your card doesn't bend at all, the post office considers it a package and you should go get it weighed to figure out the proper postage.

You can find all the postal specifications (and a handy postage calculator) here:  http://postcalc.usps.gov/



Mail your cards no later than May 5th. (I don’t need to receive them by the 5th, they need to be postmarked by the 5th.)

Karen Isaacson
PO Box 532
Shrewsbury, MA 01545
United States


Found poetry - part 2

More cool poems for you.


Three from Alyssa:



 Four from Care:





Another one from Dana:


Two from Julie:



Three from Peggy:



Saturday, April 19, 2014

Using your stuff

One of the many perks of running this group is receiving all the beautiful envelopes you use to send your swap items.
Some of you seem to put as much effort into your envelopes as you do the art inside!  I can never bring myself to toss them in the recycle bin.  Sometimes I reuse these envelopes, but most of the art I make is sent "naked" through the mail, and the beautiful envelopes pile up.

Last weekend I had the brilliant idea to bind them into a book.


Another perk?
Many of you include the occasional extra tidbit in your envelope as a "hostess gift."  It might be a scrap of your painted paper, an ATC you created, cool images, random text, or other little bits of ephemera.  These have been piling up in a basket on my desk with the intention of using them "soon."
Building on the momentum of my envelope book, I finally dove into the basket.  One night I grabbed a blank sketchbook and my glue stick and spent a pleasant evening watching a movie and creating loose collages with your stuff.  Here's an example:


It's cut and paste therapy, and so good for my soul.
You can see more pages here.

Thank you all for inspiring me and sharing with me.
I love this group.

Transparent layers - part 4

Here are the last of the luscious layered cards.
I know this type of layering is second nature for some of you, but for many others this swap pushed you to try things you've never done before.  This was the first "technique based" swap, and I consider it a huge success.


Four from Marge:
(using watercolors, tissue paper and packing tape transfers)





 Four from Naila:
(using tracing paper, washi tape, transfers)





Two from Nancy:
(using envelope windows)



One from Noel:
(using napking, handmade paper, encaustic wax)


Two from Olivia:
(using wax paper and tape)



Two from Rose:
(using paper from a cigar box.  The scan doesn't show it well, but there is a layer of transparent spider web across the cards)





Two from Susie:
(using napkins, tissue paper and envelope windows)



Four from Terrie:
 (using tissue paper, napkins, deli paper and tracing paper)






One from Tina:
(using a contact paper transfer)


Two from Tricia:
(using tissue paper, napkin and a pie box)



What should our next "technique" swap be?
Got any suggestions?