Journals & Collaborative Projects

Below you will find a sampling our members' work from previous collaborative projects.  Click on images to view them larger. We hope this will inspire you to come and play with us! If you are interested in joining our group, please visit us at:

Tutorials & Techniques

Below are some of our favorite tricks for adding depth and dimension to your art.  We hope you have fun giving these a try!

Current Group Swaps & Projects

Below is a list of current swaps and projects available to group members. If you are interested in joining our group and participating in these projects, please visit us at:  

For existing group members, you can sign up to participate  in these projects here: Swaps & Current Projects.  

We look forward to swapping with you.  Happy Arting!

Member Gallery for Group Swaps
Below you will find a sampling our members' work from previous group swaps and projects.  Click on images to view them larger. We hope this will inspire you to come and play with us! If you are interested in joining our group, please visit us at:
Come play with us... Join today!

Paper Traders is a friendly online community of artists from around the world. We nurture and value creativity, embrace new ideas, products, and techniques yet also value tried and true methods of artistic expression. Our projects consist primarily of paper arts, mixed media collage, artist trading cards, altered art, assemblages, collaborative journals, mail art, and more.

We are interested in creative individuals of varied skill levels who wish to challenge themselves artistically and help build a supportive community. We are at our best when we can share our creative efforts as well as techniques, resources, feedback, and insights. We encourage conversation about art, the art process, and what it means to be an artist.

Paper Traders is hosted on Yahoo Groups at
We hope you will consider joining us on an artistic journey!

In order to prevent spammers and to insure that all applicants are actual persons interested in creating art, a questionnaire will be sent to all potential members. When applying, please submit digital examples of your work or direct us to a website where we can view your art. The intent of the questionnaire is not to judge the merits of your art but to safeguard the integrity of our community.

Free Images for Download

Below you will find images that are owned by our group members and offered for your personal use as well as images found in the public domain. Images may be freely used in your personal artwork but may not be used for commercial purposes of any kind without written permission of the owner. No images may be used to create collage sheets or image collections for resale.

To download, follow the link provided. In some cases, you may be able to just click on the image to enlarge it, then right-click and select "save image as". Content changes frequently and many images are available for a limited time.  Please check back often for newly posted images to use in your art journey.

Open Art Challenges !

We're changing things up here at Paper Traders. Instead of the monthly challenges of the past, we'll now be hosting special challenges that might feature a specific technique or product and will be rewarded with actual prizes sponsored by our group members.

Our new challenge for 2013 is a year long word prompt journaling project/challenge. Each specific challenge will be open for one month and all art bloggers can participate, whether you are a Paper Traders member or not. Each artist will comment with a link to their blog post that features the artwork for that particular challenge. For each challenge, a winner will be selected whose art best exemplifies the challenge. The winning artist will be featured here and get a "Trader Treasure" blog button to display on their own blog. They also will receive one chance for each entry for the end of the year prize drawing. Watch this page for more details and challenge announcements.

Monday, January 31, 2011

One World One Heart Offerings

Click HERE for the OWOH participant list

Welcome to our stop on the One World One Heart worldwide blog event!

Paper Traders is an online community that values and nurtures creativity.  We are artists of varied skill level who wish to challenge ourselves artistically and are working to build a creative community.  Our swaps and projects primarily consist of mixed media collage, artist trading cards, altered objects, assemblages, collaborative journals, mail art, and more.  We embrace new ideas, products, and techniques and encourage conversation about the art process and what it means to be an artist.  Thank you for visiting.  We hope you like what you see and will come back soon!

The moderators of our group are each contributing something to our giveaway.  We will be offering all of the following items as a single prize for one lucky visitor.  Just leave a comment on this post and we will select a random winner on February 17th.  Please make sure we have a way to contact you if you win!

Our prize includes...

Two digital collage sheets!
(Sample images here are small but your sheets will be in pdf format with images at 300 dpi)
Three mini album necklaces!
These feature handmade paper and have frames to hold two photos.

AND... this collection of supplies including:
2  cardstock sheets black/white clipart
3 sheets scrapbook paper
3 sheets embossed cardstock
1 sheet clear word stickers
1 vintage "Little Leather Library" book

      PLUS... a couple of old-fashioned paper doilies and a selection of vintage texts and other various book pages for your paper art collage:

    Leave a comment here and you could win it all...  Good Luck!!

    Sunday, January 23, 2011

    A New Year - Some New Faces

     Some sweet little baby faces to use in your art journey.  Enjoy!

     These images belong to Connie Holso and are offered for your personal use only.  Please do not repost or redistribute.

    A Work in Progress

    We hope you're having fun browsing through the new blog.  We've added some "archives" to represent some of the art our group has done in the past.  We'll continue to add more content as more of our members give permission to republish their work here.  You can see our members' art on the "Gallery" page as well as the "Collaborations" page, where you'll find work from our journal projects and group challenges.

    Check out the "Swap" page to see some of the new projects we're working on.  If you're interested in participating in these, please go to the Yahoo site and click on the Join button. We welcome artists of varying skill level who are interested in helping to build a supportive community.

    On the "Freebies" page, you'll find some clipart to download and use in your own personal art.  And on the "Trading Post" there are several items that are offered for sale or trade.  Some of our members have shared their favorite creative techniques on the "Tutorial" page.  Please check back often as we plan to update these pages on a regular basis.

    Thanks for visiting!  We hope you'll stop by again soon!!

    Sunday, January 16, 2011

    2011 One World One Heart blog event

    One World One Heart is a worldwide event for bloggers only.  It gives all those who blog a chance to meet and mingle and form connections with those they may not have otherwise met from all over the world.  In the past 4 years this event has grown to over 1,000 participants with lasting friendships formed along the way.  It's like a gigantic open house allowing you to travel without ever leaving your home… going from blog to blog (in various countries), seeing the wonder each one has created, and meeting all the fabulous people behind those blogs.  As a bonus, each blogger participant will offer up a door prize just for dropping by, saying hello, and seeing their world.  It’s really that easy.  The fifth (and final) One World One Heart will begin on January 30 and run until February 17, 2011.  If you're interested in participating, click HERE for all the information.

    The Paper Traders moderators will each be offering something for the blog event - three prizes for one winner!  Details will be unveiled when the event begins on January 30th.  We encourage our group members to join in the fun.  If you are a member of Paper Traders and are participating in OWOH, please let the moderators know and we will feature a link to your blog for the event.  Have fun!

    1796 printing of Humes' History of England

    I am sharing some pages from my favorite old tome...  It's not my favorite because of the topic but because of the paper!  This is an original copy of Humes' History of England Vol.4, which was printed in 1796.  The paper is very thin and fragile and the text is vintage in it's language and lettering (sorry, all of the images are gone).  I'm offering pages of text from this book for 25 cents each or 5 for $1 (US) but will consider trading for ephemera. Send a SASE to: Beckie Holso, PO Box 212735, Chula Vista, CA 91921.  Pages are 4-3/4" x 8-1/2" so send a larger envelope if you don't want them creased. Please email me for details at: artbeckons at hotmail dot com.

    Sears Roebuck & Co catalog pages

    I recently acquired a 1968 reprint of the original 1897 Sears, Roebuck and Co. catalog. There are nearly 800 pages of wonderfully yellowed vintage catalog images available. I'm offering them for 25 cents per page or 5 pages for $1 (US) but will consider trading for ephemera. I will do my best to send a nice variety of images. You may request specific images, available on a first-come first-serve basis. Send a SASE to: Beckie Holso, PO Box 212735, Chula Vista, CA 91921.  Pages are 8-5/8" x 11" so send a large envelope if you don't want them creased. Please email me for details at: artbeckons at hotmail dot com.

    Sunday, January 9, 2011

    Word Prompt Journal Challenge

    (Open to Paper Traders members only)

    Kickoff Date: January 30, 2011

    All skill levels...even if you are a newbie at journals, please think about entering this challenge and stretching yourself a bit.

    As we begin a new year, and with moving my father to a nursing home, my thoughts have been on how life never ceases to change and evolve.  Sometimes it is full of joy, sometimes sorrow, and often a mixture of many things at once.  Carl Jung  said, "There are as many nights as days, and the one is just as long as the other in the year's course. Even a happy life cannot be without a measure of darkness, and the word 'happy' would lose its meaning if it were not balanced by sadness."

    There have always been two scriptural quotes that have inspired and helped me through the ups and downs of life.  The first is  "Man is that he might have joy."  and the second "For it must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things."  As I deal with the struggles of life, these thoughts provide balance to keep me more centered.

    So, upon contemplating on these things I have decided to host a challenge for our group.  There will not be a specific theme or style required, but each of the prompts given will be a word that refers to the challenges and joys of life.  To inspire you I will include a few quotes each time that might get your creative juices going.

    Swap Description:
    First, before our kickoff date, each participant will need to make a 16 page journal (including covers) approximately 8x10 inches. We will be decorating only 12 pages using our prompts.  You may decorate your covers and extra pages as desired.   Please use sturdy watercolor paper for your pages so they can support the work you will do on them.

    You may make your journal however you like but I would suggest Teesha Moore's easy to make journal that is done with one large sheet of watercolor paper.  She suggests Fabriano Artistico, which is on sale right now at Dick Blick for less than half of what I can get it for locally - if you buy 10 sheets.  (So do think about sharing an order with some friends and save yourself some money.)

    Her easy to follow instructions are found on YouTube.  It is in two parts so be sure to watch both:

    For inspiration you may want to watch some more of Teesha's amazing collage journal instructions. She has some good suggestions for penwork there also. There is a listing of the videos here:

    And some basic journaling tips here:

    Every other week I will post a new word prompt and you have two weeks to complete your page for it.  Please post your images to the 2011 Word Prompt Journal Challenge album on the Yahoo group Challenges site.

    No one will be checking up on you, but everyone who completes all of the challenges by the end of the project will have their names put into a drawing for a special prize.  There! Is that incentive enough to make you want to do this?

    Saturday, January 1, 2011

    Welcome to our new blog!

    Welcome to our brand new blog - we are so excited you're here!  This blog was created to be the public face for our private Yahoo group.  This forum gives us a chance to show you what we are all about and entice you to join our creative group of artists.

    If you are already a member of Paper Traders, this site will be an additional resource for you.  Here you will find exciting swap announcements, informative tutorials, a place to sell and trade items from your art stash, and free downloads - all in one place. So grab a promotional button from the right-hand column to link this site to your personal blog and help us get the word out.

    If you have any suggestions for the development of this blog, please email one of the moderators.

    We really appreciate the efforts of all our terrifically talented group members and offer special thanks to current member and former moderator, Keron Lee, for the use of her beautiful artwork in the design of this website.