Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Art Trading

People have been asking me about all of this art swapping business.
How it works, what people trade and where does it happen
so I thought I would share my experiences here.

There are many forums and sites available online that enable you join in and swap your art and gorgeous creations. Some sites have a rating system that don't inspire me join in with them as in my eyes, there is no wrong art, it is your own expression and beyond judgement, however I do love to get respectful feedback on my work and that is something that encourages me to join in on my chosen sites.

My favorites are listed in my side bar, I find Milliande's Art Community for Women and Tamara LaPorte's Willowing network incredible places where I find much inspiration, support, respect and encouragement. I have also made real life friends at these sites, it is wonderful way to meet people with similar interests.

I have joined in on many trades of ATC's Artist Trading Cards, these mini artworks are often made to a theme and you just sign up and make your cards by the due date and send them off. Some sites have a coordinator who organises the swap and collects all the cards and then sends them out to the participants, on other sites the swap partners are listed on the site, the participants exchange addresses and then they send their cards to each other.

Artist Trading Cards have an interesting history and you can read about them at
Artist Trading Cards
Art Junction a collaborative art space- ATCs in the classroom.

A terrific introduction to ATCs with lots of ideas to inspire can be found at
Cedarseed Art in my Pocket along with some other wonderful tutorials.

As soon as I heard about journal round robins I knew I wanted to participate in them. The idea of ending up with a book filled with original art works from other artists all on my chosen theme was so appealing to me and I was lucky enough to get into the International journal swap Monika is co ordinating over at Milliandes. It was lucky as numbers were limited and it was a case of first come first served. Our journals are well into their journey as they set off on July 1st 2010 and it is so nice every time one arrives in the mail to look at all the work other artists have done in each journal, then to add your own work and send it on.

These are pictures of the entry I did In Euphaeidae's journal

her chose theme was Feminine Fertility

and I adored working in her journal
because it was a topic that is so close to my heart.

There are art swaps in all sorts of mediums,
I attended the Grafton Quilt makers display on the weekend and they had some beautiful swaps on display, quilted post cards and little wall hangings.
People make ATCs from fabric, clay, needle felting, metal, almost any craft people practice can be showcased and traded in an ATC. There are people swapping art dolls, paintings, journal pages, collages, mail art, all sorts of things, its fun and its some of the nicest mail I ever receive in my mail box.

I swapped this

layered small canvas for this

gorgeous piece with Deb Raymer
at Milliande's Art Community for Women
that is proudly on display in my bathroom.

Now I know you are wondering about that beauty at the top of the post.

This is Rusalka
and I still can't believe how lucky I am to have her

I joined in on an art doll swap
this it right out of my area of ability but it looked like so much fun
and the whole community at Milliande's is so encouraging.

I had no idea I would be gifted
such a gorgeous and stunning doll

Rusalka is so beautiful and so detailed
every little part of her is so lovingly considered and finished.

and she was made by the amazingly talented Monika Schmid for me!
You can see more of Monika's lovely work at Stories of Pearls and Plunder

I am so blessed.
Art swapping has enriched my life enormously.


  1. What beautiful art works! I love the idea of an art swap. Pity I got nothing to swap!

  2. I was coming here to say a big thank you for your lovely comments on my blog, Louise, and I spotted a familiar face;-) I enjoyed your art swapping post alot and I am very happy that Rusalka has found such a loving home... I just hope she behaves;-) xoxo

  3. I'm loving your new blog, Louise, and just yummed up this post! How beautiful to give and give so wholly, and then to receive so many wonderful gifts in return. I love the energy of what you do, what you make and how you give. Thank you, so much, for sharing that energy here!


Thanks for dropping in to River Girl Art, I love your comments and feed back.