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.

Friday, August 12, 2011

Bleach Background Swap Announced

For Paper Traders members only

Bleach Stamped Background Papers
Due: 9/16/2011
Hosted by: Lorna Sommer

Directions: We will be taking heavy duty black cardstock (8 1/2" x 11"). Kid's construction paper is too thin and wouldn't stand up to what we're going to do to it! Next fold several layers of paper towels and place on a large dinner plate. Pour small amount of bleach on the papers. I keep my plate of bleach outside the studio because the fumes bother me which is why it's a great project for summertime. Decide what theme or themes you'd like your papers to be and gather 3-4 stamps in that theme (Egyptian, flowers, Celtic, etc.) Lightly stamp onto the bleach soaked papers and then onto the black cardstock. If you get too much bleach you can stamp on another paper first. Too much bleach or too heavy a hand when stamping causes the images to blur. Sometimes I like that look, but if you want only clear images then press very gently. Continue stamping until the page is pretty much covered. Don't forget you can stamp images off the edges too. I lay the papers in the sun to dry to enhance the bleaching process, but that's not necessary. Then gather 3 colored ink pads (or more colors if you wish, but I usually stick to 3) and some sponge pieces. Now color in the bleached images with ink. I've found that rubbing the color on rather than dabbing works better. Next, I take a gold ink pad and sponge through sequin waste in any areas that look "empty". As a final touch, I will stamp a small additional image in gold ink or stamp on top of blurred images to make them more clear. I did that on the Oriental page where I stamped the characters in gold and then stamped on top of the lantern to clarify the image. Also did that on the arch in the Medieval paper. Then you're done! Viola! Gorgeous papers!

Please mail 2 papers flat with cardboard, etc to keep them that way along with $1.00 return postage and a mailing label with your name and address. Please don't tape the envie too much so I can re-use it for the returns. Postmark by September 16th.

Lorna Sommer

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