Artist trading cards
August 16, 2006 11:12 AM   Subscribe

Artist trading cards (ATC's) have three rules they shouldn't be sold, they are to measure exactly 2.5" by 3.5", and on the back they must have the artist's name, contact information, title of the ATC and it's number in the series. Since M. Vanci Stirnemann started this hobby in 1997 it has spread the world over. [previously on metafilter]
posted by bigmusic (13 comments total) 10 users marked this as a favorite
Very cool - never heared of them before. I better start my own collection and set of ATCs. Thanks!!!
posted by homodigitalis at 11:36 AM on August 16, 2006

they shouldn't be sold

So, I guess they're giving them away. Where do I send to get my free cards?
posted by dhammond at 11:40 AM on August 16, 2006

dhammond, the T stands for trading. You trade your card for theirs.
posted by dobbs at 11:49 AM on August 16, 2006 is another great source on ATC's with forums, galleries and how-to articles.

The general rule is that the cards are to be swapped, either between creators or collectors, and I am sure some people just give them away with no swapping involved. I've been involved with ATC's for a while now, and so far haven't sold any of mine, but I'm a starving artist, and every time someone offers to buy one of my cards, I have to decide whether to give it to them or insist on a swap (which doesn't work if the other person isn't a card creator or doesn't have any to swap). It'd be nice to at least get a few bucks to buy more supplies and pay myself a few pennies an hour for the work, but a few of the swap groups I belong to have a blanket ban on selling and will kick anyone selling cards to the curb, so thus far, I've haven't sold any ... yet.

They are fun to make, and it's very challenging working on such a small "canvas". I'm working on some this week for a swap that are becoming quite complex (more like tiny unfolding books), and it's been an engineering challenge to get them to work the way I want them to work. I'd say they are a fun hobby for anyone, artist or not, to get into, but you do have to watch for people who I call "artsy snobs" ... they only want to trade with you if they deem your work on par or better then theirs. Me? I'll trade with anyone who can put something on a 2.5"x3.5" card. It's fun getting something in the mail that isn't a bill or junk mail, and it's been interesting seeing what people come up with.
posted by Orb at 12:12 PM on August 16, 2006

see related: artomat
posted by parhamr at 12:37 PM on August 16, 2006

Shouldn't be sold, eh? For those of you starting your collections, eBay has you covered.
posted by nlindstrom at 1:35 PM on August 16, 2006

First rule of Artist Trading Card club is there is no Artist Trading Card selling.
posted by jefbla at 1:47 PM on August 16, 2006

While I love these... This post is pretty much a flat-out double, right? (Because I considered making it about a month ago and got the flag).
posted by klangklangston at 1:50 PM on August 16, 2006

My friend started making something extremely similar about 18 months ago, though he hadn't heard about this group/phenomenon. It can be pretty cool, but seems an easy way for some to cop out and sell later on,
posted by efalk at 4:09 PM on August 16, 2006

I have seen this before, but this is a very nice collection. Thanks.
posted by caddis at 6:17 PM on August 16, 2006

seems there's lots of interesting ways to swap art! thanks for turning me on to this idea!
posted by cubby at 8:01 PM on August 16, 2006

Oh, no--one of the links is to an art supply place. Curse you, MetaFilter!

::slowly, strugglingly, reaches for credit card::
posted by ancientgower at 9:21 AM on August 17, 2006

Awesome post bigmusic! Didn't know about this and am really interested in the art and the phenomenon.
posted by nickyskye at 1:51 AM on August 18, 2006

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