Welcome to Wild Hawk Studio

Come share my views on art and art-related topics and see my works in progress…

Please note all images are copyright ©Barbara A. Lewis and cannot be used without written permission.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Tiny Treasures…ATCs!

Recently I was introduced to ATCs (Artist Trading Cards) at Pinellas Park Art Society - two of our very talented artists presented a demo and provided samples of these tiny treasures - each one an original work in various media. The only requirement for producing one of these little gems is the size - it has to be 2 1/2 inches by 3 1/2 inches and they should fit in standard baseball card sleeves.

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.

At the end of the demo we were given a couple of blank cards for our own creations with a promise to have a swap meet at our next meeting. I thoroughly enjoyed doing these little sketches - mostly using Prismacolor on Mi Tientes pastel paper, but numerous media were represented by our group’s talented artists. We had a lively trading session and promised to do more. I have posted my first eight cards here on the blog. They are a great way to use up the left bits of paper that I have lying around the studio after projects since most of my papers are as thick as cardstock. And a wonderful way to meet new artists and share your work!

The major art suppliers have pre-cut packs in various stocks: watercolor, bristol, canvas sheet, etc. There are even mini-mats available to frame them with! Clear, protective sleeves and sheets can be purchased at Walmart or any place that sells baseball card sleeves. Try creating a few - they are fun to do and a bit of a challenge too!

ON THE EASEL (STILL!) My little mallard duck has been put on hold so that I can get a few pieces ready for some upcoming shows - will post up more pics soon!


  1. Hi Barbara, How are you?
    It's Tom from the american artist site.
    I just recently picked up some blank atc's.
    Maybe we can do a trade once I get some done.
    I have been on linkedin & facebook a little
    more often lately.
    Take care,

  2. Hi Barb...I picked up your blog off the American Artist site discussion on en plein air. I am a Florida artist and always looking for folks who paint there too. I live in Leesburg, FL and belong to the Leesburg Art league and the Mt. Dora Art League. Keeping up with a blog and my blogging buddies pretty much is all I can handle so I don't know if I'll get involved in the "forum writing". But I LOVED this discussion of ATCs and was just reading about them again today on Rhonda Caprenter's blog (http://rhcarpenter.blogspot.com/). I bought a set of ATCs commercially made last spring and am finally getting around to maybe doing something with them. The ones you have pictures are SO splendid that I am somewhat intimated. Since I am new to your blog I have some catching up to do. But it sounds like you work in acrylic? I am new to acrylic but am enjoying it. I am primarily watercolor. Drop by sometime.

  3. Great stuff Barb. I am so jealous of your talent.