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.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

Member Spotlight on "Fairyrocks"

by Pam C.

Welcome to another Paper Traders Member Spotlight. This month we are shining the light
on Pam Colosimo aka Fairyrocks.

How did you find Paper Traders?
I was googling around after I finally got high speed internet. I typed in 'Paper Ephemera'
 visited a few sites and then stumbled upon Paper Traders. I haunted the site
 for a few months before making the commitment to join the yahoo group.
I think the first thing I did was trade some real paper ephemera with Beckie.
 I had a look around at the challenges, swaps and artwork. I was hooked.

How long have you been a member?
I think I have been a member for approximately 2 years, give or take a few months.

Where do you live?
I live in Central Alberta, Canada. I am a country dweller and have
to drive about a half an hour to the nearest town and an hour to
 the nearest small city.

How have your surroundings affected your art?
I live in the foothills of the Canadian Rocky Mountains and can in fact
see them out my kitchen window. I don't draw mountains,
 but nature is a kind of muse for my soul.
I garden through much of our short summers.

I have a lot of time to myself, in fact I am very selfish with my time.
I am one of the very very lucky women who does not have to work
full time any more. My husband supports me
in any endeavor. In fact he always has the right answer
"why yes dear, I can see why you need that"

Please share a little about your own art experience.
I never ever considered myself an artist. I simply play with paper,
glue and paints. I love collage type assemblage. Paper traders is
allowing me to stretch my mind and try a hand at many new things.
By trade I am a memorial stone carver, more about that later.
But, it involves planning and doing graphics for the stones.
I think that, more than anything, made me want to leap from
stone to paper arts.

There are so many real artists and so much fantastic product
that makes it possible for me to put a personal swing on my creations.
 'Debbie Travis' was my first big Paint Star Hero.
 I still use many of her techniques just on a smaller scale.

What are some of your favorite techniques or genres?
The first actual big deal painting I did was acrylic on the floor of
our old fixer upper farm house. The kids were little and we were
short on cash. so instead of replacing the carpet
we pulled up, I painted the boards and then did a copy cat mural
 on the floor. I think it was that 'Kolhr ad with the tulips' I love that artwork.
It turned out good enough. I have done trompe l'oeil on at least a
 few walls of every house  we have lived in as well.

I love to make big plans and then see them through to
the finished item. Smaller things I do for paper traders
type ATC's and artsy bits are sometimes a jumping off point
for larger things. I am primarily a scrap booker, because I need
to tell the stories and preserve the memories. I have made
cards, but really don't enjoy them. My hat is off to the card makers.

 I am an accomplished sewer, I have sewn wedding dress and
patched heavy canvas tents, and everything you could imagine
 in between. Having had 4 daughters, I made them all their
 little girl dresses. But, they grow up and now I just mostly
sew art journals or on my scrapbook pages.

I also love to take old items and make them into something else.
Printers tray's, old wood boxes. You name it, if am idea hits me I will alter .

What inspires you?
Inspiration? I love other peoples work. At first,  I feared I would
never have an original idea, but it seems, the more I see, the greater I reach.
I am always inspired by a good poem, story, song and do
frequent interviews with my children and grand children.

Who are some famous artists whose work you admire and what especially appeals to you about this?
I love the realism of 'Bev Doolittle' Sephen Lynman's landscapes
Tom Cross for his fantasy fairy work of course. We have a gallery collection
of their numbered prints; da Vinci drawings and sketches.
{can only dream of owning a print of that caliber}
I guess I love any fairy that looks real.

On the flip side, cave paintings and stone symbols fascinate me.
 I think the cave -man gets credit for those.
However I am of the opinion at some point his wife said to him
{in cave language} Look Thagg, if I have to live here for one more
winter with nothing but bare walls to stare at, I am going to
go positively mad!! Put something on that wall would you? And he did.
Ruin stones with markings as well.
That in a nut shell is how I see our human need to have beauty around us.

Describe your work area... Do you have your own studio or craft room?
Here again, I do have my own space. I am lucky luck girl.
I currently can be found most days in the farthest room
of our basement. I planned it and my DH did much of the groundwork
so I could have extra plugins.
I did all the finishing my self. It is a light robin egg blue on 2 walls
and a sand on the other 2. I have two nice size windows that let in
a lot of day light. It is my happy place. You can see
photos in detail on my blog.
I have a huge home made work desk top. And enough supplies
that if I was locked in there for years, I would only have to come
out to get food.
{I have a secret stash of extra dark chocolate on hand in the room} 
What tips or tricks have you found to help carve out a niche
 for your supplies and art?
This is a hard question for me. We have a large house, my husband works away,
so I just take over where ever I feel like working. Garage, basement wherever.
Depending on what I am working on.
I have a high rate of starting and getting things done.
 I am one of those people that will never have
'nothing to do' I dream big dreams and go to sleep
 planning what I am going to make the next day.
I only purchase items that are on sale. even if it is only 10% off.
I do the research before I buy now. I didn't always and have made
 some pretty bad purchases on a whim.

Please share a little about your family and pets...
Currently in house, I have 2 late teen daughters. We share our house with 2 cats,
1 large dog, 1 snake, and many dust bunnies.
Out of home, I have 2 grown daughters
and 5 grand children. . Outside we have one mini pony, one mini donkey
and a mini hiney which is the mix of the aforementioned two.

If you'd like, please share a little about your childhood,
 where you grew up, and when your creativity began.
I grew up not far from where I live now. However I have traveled
with my husband and called home to many provinces in Canada
even if it was only for a few months at a time. I come from a time
when indoor plumbing was something the neighbors had.
I think I was 12 when we finally got indoor facilities.
I have an appreciation for creature comforts.

My first artistic love was a huge thick coloring book and a
large box of crayons. I packed it everywhere with me.
It was my favorite toy. I know why now. I wasn't much of a color-er,
but that didn't stop me trying. When I was in grade 4 art class the teacher
drug me to the back of the class to look at the mountains,
and point out how my purple triangular peeks with white tops,
looked nothing like the real mountains....she was right of course.
Ah, well I am almost over it, and I still don't draw mountains. LOL

Do you have any other hobbies or interests?
I read I usually have 4 or more bed time novels going at once.
During the day I will read any thing that tells the story of mankind,
archaeology, things like that.
I write down the family stories and my fondest memories current and childhood.
I do love to tell a good story, and one day I may write a book. 

I love to travel to any where hot.
I am working on a full size 'Playhouse' renovation.
You can also read about that on my blog :

I garden, scrapbook, sew, paint , building type construction, drywall,
I can do basic plumbing, pour cement, refinish furniture,
make memorial stones for cemetery's. I have a link to my 'Romancing the Stones'
blog on the sidebar of my Fairy Rocks and Things Blog
I have collected literally tons of rocks. Some of them I have been
packing with me since I was 8 years old.

Why Fairyrocks?
When I first started learning how to make memorial stones
I opened a small store. I needed a business name to register.
So, I called my self "Fairy Rocks and Things"
I just liked the name so much I kept it for everything and eventually
dropped the things off the end. I run under the pseudonym mostly
because I am a fairly private person and would
rather build a character for my creative outlets with that name.
It helps me keep my personal life private.
I know, sounds a little hokey, but it works for me.
And its fun.


Jo Murray said...

Oh boy...what a busy girl! Love your work...and your lust for life. It's such a pleasure to learn more about you.

Jessi Fogan said...

Pam, you are an amazing woman!

redjanfan said...

loved reading your interview. I was an Alberta girl to, but from Athabasca country. The world and it's art are so connected now, it is wonderful to receive inspiration from everyone everywhere! Thank you for sharing your talents.

Rita Barakat said...

I love getting to know you a bit Pam~ fabulous read :). Such a talented lady!