I've been waiting for months to post about these! I am so excited to share them with you. This year, I hosted the 3rd annual 6 Degrees of HLM International Card Swap, and this post represents my contribution. Overall I have to tell you that all the cards were amazing. 20 people participated, and all 20 produced high-quality cards. No one flaked. Everyone put their heart into their work. So, a special thank you to all of you who participated!
For my cards, I wanted to try out some new techniques and I was (as usual) inspired by Kelly Rae Roberts. And so I began, first by covering a large piece of watercolor paper with papers that inspired me:
I treated the collage all over with matte medium before painting over it and strategically wiping away. Then I used a Shiva Artist's Paintstik to provide a white base layer for faces. These paint sticks are oil paint mixed with wax so that they dry faster. Kelly Rae swears by them and uses them for her faces.
I then cut along lines I'd drawn on the backside, and again into two pieces (depending on where in the square the faces ended up), and finely detailed the faces.
After that I got so busy that I stopped taking pictures! But as you can see from the final outcome below, I then cut out individual outfits from more paper I loved, cut out two layers of flowers and sewed them on, and individually stamped each letter. The words were inspired by a long, hand-written letter I received from a friend. I afforded myself the permission to buy some new pens to complete the faces and hands, and some hemp string (a new material for me), as inspired by another card swap participant's cards.
The cards are tri-folded and the blue string holds them closed. It wraps around the back of the card on the outside, then pops through to the inside on the folds and out through two small holes to form the bow in the front.
Here are all 12 of them together. I like seeing them together because of how different they are, and how each lady turned out with such a different personality from the next.
In total, I put more than 30 hours into these 12 cards. And I loved them. I was so happy to send them off and share them with the swappers, and yet sorry to see them go. I learned so much with this project, and look forward to the ways in which I can apply those lessons to future projects. I don't think I could sell these babies, for two reasons: 1, they took too long to make to sell them as cards. Perhaps as little works of art, framed, then I could get money back for the time I put into them. 2, I'd be worried about copyright. Kelly Rae writes a great word about what is and isn't ok copyright-wise, and to replicate her style and try to sell it as mine would a violation. Not that my style looks so close to hers, but they were inspired by her style, and I wouldn't want to disrespect her work or aspiration in any way.
Special thanks to my sister Ashley, for her fine photography of my work.
And last but not least, a photo of all 200 card swap cards on my studio floor!