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: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Paper_Traders/
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!
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: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/Paper_Traders/.
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.
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.
Due: Sign up by August 31, 2011; Postmark mailout by October 16, 2011
Theme: Time - featuring clocks, sundials, hourglasses, or other timepieces; Postage/binding fee: $4; When I look at cabinet cards I'm always wondering about the person - who they were, what were their dreams, etc. Sometimes I even create small stories about them. I adore cabinet cards and therefore wish to preserve the real ones.
Here is how I create "faux" cabinet cards: Go to Google, choose Images and type in "cabinet cards". Many of these are free, so copy/save a few for your own use. I use the free program Picassa for printing my images and artwork. I print the cabinet card images out using the 6"x4" size and then adhere them to 6.5"x4.25" mat board or 140# watercolor paper. You may have a printing program that allows you to print them the exact size of 6.5"x4.25".
The front of the cards are to be altered to represent the theme, "Time" (time, sundials, hourglasses, clocks, etc). The back of the cards are to be lightly decorated incorporating the Time theme and perhaps using something as simple as a swirl stamp. Include your name on the backside.
Send your 7 cabinet cards to me by October 16 postmark along with $4 - I'll swap & bind them into book form and mail back to each of you. You will receive back one of your cards plus 6 others. Please be sure to not add any bulky embellishments on left side of card - I need about 3/4ths of an inch for binding them into a book.
When this group was first organized I was invited by one of the original owners to be a part of it. I knew her from a swap we had both been in on another Yahoo group.
How long have you been a member?
Since the beginning - 2005
Where do you live?
I live in Cody, Wyoming USA (Where the West is still Wild!) Cody is the gateway to the east entrance of Yellowstone National Park . We are surrounded by mountains and it is a beautiful place to live. We have tons of wildlife - I have deer in my yard every day. Last year we had a doe with fawns that came to nibble on the flowers on my porch every afternoon. It was so fun to watch the babies grow! Cody is the home of the world renowned Buffalo Bill Historical Center, a complex of several awesome museums - The Buffalo Bill Museum, The Winchester Firearms Museum, The Draper Natural History Museum, The Plains Indian Museum, and the Whitney Art Gallery. Cody was founded by Buffalo Bill Cody and his famous Irma Hotel is still in operation. In the summer we have a rodeo every night, concerts in the park, the Cody Stampede, and many other fun activities.
How have your surroundings affected your art?
Growing up on a ranch in rural South Dakota I learned early to love the beauty of nature. We have moved a lot in our married life so I have seen a great deal of this country from Virginia and the Carolinas to the west coast and everything in between including the gulf coast. The variety in the USA is inspiring in so many ways but most especially in the natural beauty - I can never capture those colors and the play of the light found in nature. Living in Wyoming is very inspiring - the wildlife, the majestic mountains, Yellowstone National Park, the prairies, and everything in between. I think this is why birds and other natural things are some of my favorite themes when creating. Right now I am being serenaded by the doves just outside my window.
Please share a little about your own art experience.
I have always been interested in arts and crafts. My mother was very crafty and I grew up knowing that if you wanted something for your house you could always make it yourself if you just tried. I sew, quilt, have dabbled in ceramics, doll making, cross stitch, and many other arts but it wasn't until I discovered paperarts that I really found my niche. It is so varied that one never grows bored with it. My most recently acquired toy is a Silhouette electronic die cut machine and I am loving it.
What are some of your favorite techniques or genres?
I am one of those people who is always trying something new, so usually it changes frequently as I learn new things. Right now I am learning to use my Silhouette and designing cut files for it. I am also learning to relax and be a little more messy in my art. My girls tell me I need to not be so uptight about everything being "perfect" - which it never is!I love anything that is vintage - steampunk, shabby chic -things that remind me of ancestors. I have also been working on restoring some old family photos and dabbling in digital art. I have been playing with torn paper backgrounds for years and am always intriqued about all the different ways that people find to do it. One of my favorite is to tear really bright papers such as origami or printed papers and glue them down with gel medium, then cover the whole thing with a layer of thin white tissue paper, also glued with gel medium. It make the tissue semi-transparent and mutes all of the colored papers for a really pretty look.
What inspires you?
Probably the thing that inspires me most is to see my daughters and granddaughter develop as artists. I was the first in our family to dabble in altered art and mixed media, but now they have all surpassed me in talent and vision. It inspires me to see their work and how they have grown. Also, I am constantly inspired by the art of our group members. They are so varied in their techniques and themes but all are so beautiful and inspiring.
Who are some famous artists whose work you admire and what especially appeals to you aboutthis?
I live in the West and am constantly exposed to wonderful western art by the best western artists ever at the Whitney Gallery Museum, and in the local art galleries as there are many contemporary artists of note who live in this area. Although I do love all of this art, it is not my favorite. My favorite works are those featuring children. I love the work of the Red Rose Girls - Jessie Willcox Smith, Violet Oakley, and Elizabeth Shippen Green. I think Jessie Wilcox Smith is probably my favorite Red Rose artist (I have some of her prints on my walls). I love how she captured the innocence of children in such natural settings. William Adolphe Bouguereau, is another artist I love, especially his paintings of children. Other artists I like are Mary Cassatt and Bessie Pease Gutman.
Describe your work area... Do you have your own studio or craft room?
I do have an art room. It is small (about 9 x 91/2 feet) but I have lots of shelves and have managed to fit all my "stuff" as well as a computer desk in there. LOL It is so nice to have a little place where you can work then close the door if things are messy instead of having to put everything away each time.
What tips or tricks have you found to help carve out a niche for your supplies and art?
I have all my stamps and lots of other supplies in Iris carts. I pulled them apart and reassembled them to add drawers to each making them higher, then I hooked them together so they are a solid unit. My dh made a board that fits on top from pre-finished supershelf so it makes a nice counter-top. I use clear acrylic box frames in the drawers to add a second layer so I can easily lift them out to see what is in the bottom layer. I use mini crates (from the dollar store) to store cut papers and small supplies on shelves that we mounted above the Iris carts. My images and paper ephemera are filed in a two drawer file cabinet which fits under my work table. My cardstock is in plastic paper sorters (Cropper Hopper) on a book shelf unit.
Please share a little about your family and pets...
I have been married to my college sweetheart for 44 years in September. We have 4 grown children and 6 beautiful, wonderfully talented grandchildren ages 2 to 18 year. We now have only one pet - a white goldfish named "Whitey" (his little orange companion "Goldie" died). The imaginative names are courtesy of the little grandkids who gave them to us. :-)
If you'd like, please share a little about your childhood, where you grew up, and when your creativity began.
I was born and raised in South Dakota. I was the only girl in a family of six children – three older brothers and two younger. We lived on a ranch down a dirt road thirteen mile from the nearest town. We went to a rural one-room school until 8th grade, rode horses to school, and always had chores to do before and after school. We grew our own food - butchered and canned it for the winter months and worked hard on the ranch. But we had great times too just being kids - running wild over the hills, wading in the creek, swimming in the stock pond, picking wild berries (oh, you would die for my mom’s chokecherry jelly!). My mother was a make-do kind of person so I learned early how to sew and craft. Family and neighbors were frequent visitors in our home so we learned to share and help one another. As far back as I can remember we were always creating or refurbishing things. When I was thirteen I entered an art contest I saw advertised in the newspaper and won a week-long art camp at a state college. That was so eye opening for me. It was the first time I ever knew about so many art supplies...pencils in every hardness, kneaded erasers, watercolor paper! I was in heaven. My mom had given me $20 for meals (that was a fortune in 1961!) but they ended up being included in the camp so I spent it all at the book store - on art supplies!
Do you have any other hobbies or interests?
I sew and have been making some clothes for my grandkids recently – I have a culotte to finish hemming today in fact. I love to read and just finished "The Help" which was a gift from my daughter and granddaughter - can't wait to see the movie! I volunteer one day each week at the local Family History Center and teach a Family History class on Sundays at church. I have been working on my own genealogy and on digitally restoring some old family photos.
Each banner will consist of 6 pennants made of heavy cardstock or chipboard and
covered in paper. The back side of the pennants should be finished as well.
The size of each pennant is 5" across the top and the sides should be 6" long.
Spell out the word "AUTUMN" with your banner. You can embellish with ribbons,
lace, German scrap, glitter, rhinestones, buttons, or whatever makes you think
of Autumn. The pennants need to be put together in a banner by lacing ribbon or
fibers through the corners. One suggestion for preventing the ties from ripping
through the paper is to place eyelets in the corners of each pennant and thread
the ties through.
This Challenge is now closed. Back to School!! What?? Summer is not over yet, but for many of us school has already started or starts in a few short days. To help us creatively ease into the inevitable our next challenge is Vintage School Memories.
You don't have to be a member of Paper_Traders Yahoo Art group to participate
but if you would like to join us and be privy to even more great paper crafting swaps &amp;amp;
challenges plus better than ever artistic support, that would be super!
When the challenge closes, we will pick a winning piece that best showcases the theme
of the challenge and/or supply requirement.
1. Make a paper craft, mixed media or digital piece of art( any size). The theme is
"Vintage School Memories" .
2. Post your art to your blog, Flickr, Picasa (online albums). Mention
our name PaperTraders Art Blog with a link back to this post.
You are more than welcome to grab our button and post it on
your blog as well.
The last day to post for this challenge is September 14th, 2011.
3. After posting your "Vintage School Memories" art on your site,
come back to this post and use the Simply-linked widgit below
to leave us a link to your post/image. Note: Simply-link, our linky tool has gone missing. I am trying to figure out what has happened. Please leave your image link in the comment box until we get this corrected. Sorry for the inconvenience
You must include a direct link to your image or post,
not a general link to your album or blog.
Or you may create a link within the comment box below:
All you will need to do is copy and paste the url address of your post found
at the top of your browser window.
4. The winner(s) will be awarded our "Trader Treasure" blog badge which
they can choose to feature on their blog.
Their art will also be posted on the PaperTraders Art Blog for 2 weeks.
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.