Okay, most of you know that I am terrible at all these newfangled social sites and much prefer living my life the old-fashioned way, by writing personal notes, making the occasional phone call or sending emails to stay in touch with my wonderful friends and family. But…. for many months now I have been thinking that I needed a place to moan and groan about everyday things that really tick me off. For instance, I have deduced that the packaging industry is out to get us all….nearly everything I open, whether it’s a container of yogurt or a box of crackers, either tears, bends, spills or in some other way ruins the very container that was meant to CONTAIN the product…. I will have several discussions about this topic as time goes on, but for now, start making a list of some of the things you’ve tried to open unsuccessfully and that got your blood pressure agitated. Take pictures of the resulting messes, too. I’m sure I will have quite a few of those eventually.
I also want to use this space to talk about my re-discovery of my love for making art. For a couple of years now, I have been tinkering half-heartedly with different mediums… fabrics, yarns, buttons, collages, Sharpie markers on ATC’s (Artists Trading Cards – 2-1/2 x 3-1/2″ baseball card-sized tradeable cards). I was never satisfied with what I produced with those materials and faded in and out of trying new things. Then, last October (2015), I discovered a website for Mail Artists called Mail Me Some Art – a group of wonderful, creative men and women who exchange mostly postcards and ATCs, but occasionally mini books and sometimes envelopes. I got very excited when I saw some of the amazing posts of the artists’ creations and I immediately joined. They have several exchanges every month, each hosted by a different artist who decides what the theme is. When I joined, the first still-open exchange theme was “Dots and Stripes”. My imagination went wild and I rushed to buy some blank 4 x 6 postcards at my local A.C. Moore’s (art/craft supplies) and a large set of Sharpie Ultra-fine markets! I went to town making the maximum FOUR postcards and mailed them to the host. A couple of weeks later, I received my four postcards from four different artists. They were fantastic! Each was a completely different style from mine, and each technique was unlike anything I had ever seen. I was HOOKED!! I quickly entered a few more exchanges and was even more thrilled with what I received in return.
Additionally, I began to correspond with a couple of the ladies whose work the hosts had sent me randomly and we discussed our techniques and interests and, over the next six or seven months, I became friends with some and have wonderful talks in emails about our lives, our backgrounds, and mostly our love of art. Now I enter nearly every exchange and this keeps me busy for hours every day… I’m not only mastering some techniques I had never tried, but am drawing and painting with watercolors and using markers, India inks, and experimenting with all of them. I’m working on my calligraphy again and am, when not working on a postcard exchange, experimenting with all manner of art mediums and techniques. My most recent success has been playing with India inks and then dropping drops of 91% alcohol onto them while they’re still wet. The most amazing things happen to the colors! New designs appear out of nowhere and suggest flowers or faces or suns and moons and other shapes that lend themselves to embellishments with gel pens or Sharpies or Micron black pens. A whole new world has opened up since I’ve tried mixing these two mediums.
I’m going to try and upload some of my postcards to this site so you can see some of the themed exchanges I entered. If any of you are interested in this group, their website is:http://mailmesomeart.blogspot.com/ Please take a look. There are not only my own entries but hundreds of others from the many talented members of the group! Let me know what you think!