Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Artist Trading Cards

I love how things happen.

Remember the LIFE is Good Unschooling Conference? One of the "funshops" they are offering this year is Artist Trading Cards, or ATCs. I had never heard of them before, but they sounded really cool. I did a little online research and found this website and this one.

In short, Artist Trading Cards are simply pieces of art that are made out of cards, measuring 2 1/2" x 3 1/2". You can use special paper pre-cut to that size or better yet, use any sturdy paper. Old file folders, card stock, greeting cards -- any paper that is not flimsy -- can be cut to the right dimensions and used as an ATC. Once you have your 2 1/2" x 3 1/2" card, what you do with it is up to you! Draw on it, paint, collage, sew embellish, write words. Use your imagination. The options are endless!

You can keep your little works of art or trade them with other artists.

After learning about this, I was inspired to propose a new member activity at Village Home, our homeschool resource center. Starting in Spring term we will create these small pieces of art and I am super excited!!

Princess and I started working on some basic cards so that we have some examples to share.

These are simply done with cards cut from colored card stock and magic markers. That's it! I can't wait to try some new techniques! We have only a couple weeks until classes start again!! For now, we will enjoy our nice long Spring break.


  1. I love those. I debated about making some. Someone gave me a book on them. Would you and princess like to exchange a card with me? I could whip one up this weekend. I have wanted to play around with it and this would give me a good excuse to do so. I have a couple images I wanted to play with.

  2. We did something like this as part of the Pirate Club I taught a few years ago. Fun, fun, fun.

  3. Bernie, I would love to trade a card with you! I think Princess may hold out though. I started printing images from the Graphics Fairy blog to use for cards and to share with the kids, but I haven't done anything other than magic marker designs. I'd love to see what you come up with!

    Pirate Club, just from the name, sounds so cool, Gina!! When are you going to start teaching again? You have THE COOLEST ideas!!

  4. Very cool idea! I long to go to a conference and have as of yet been able to go due to severe budget constraints. Maybe one day soon! The cards look and sound like a whole lot of fun. My daughter is a stunning artist and she is designing T-shirts with our Private school Logo on them. Maybe I should get her to do some trading cards while shes at it. :)

  5. Crystal, I know that LIFE is Good offers scholarships. Others may, too. The conference is amazing and I can't recommend it enough. I would love to see some of your daughter's art! I bet she would rock at ATCs!!

  6. I did a blog on my birthday sharing my gift from her... http://creativelycrystalclear.blogspot.com/2011/01/such-special-gift.html

    I will have to look into those scholarships... the problem is the cost of getting there as well as the cost of those conferences. I know one day I will be able to get to one or two but who knows when that one day will be here.

  7. I dabbed with these and did a few swaps a couple of years ago. They are a satisfying way of creating something quickly.

  8. So true, Cate! I think the kids (and I) will have a blast making these during Spring term. :-)