Friday, December 12, 2003

I made about ten ATCs of the twenty I needed for my trades. It took me about an hour - sometimes two - per card. For the last ten I discovered that colour photocopies are reasonably good (Kate even asked me if one of my copies was an original) and cheap.

Yet, even the photocopied ones took me a long time to mount on card paper, as well as attaching the required information on the backs of the cards and writing addresses on the envelopes. I developed a nice font for the addresses and my flourishes are getting quite elaborate.

The problem with ATCs is that I spend a lot of time on something I will never see again. For my twenty this time I spent over ten hours. Plus, with my best ATCs, I am reluctant to give away the original.

I've decided to continue my ATC hobby, but to quit trading ATCs online. This is too time-consuming as I've got definite deadlines under which I have to mail them. ATC traders seem to reply very quickly asking when I'll live up to my end of the bargain. I will make pieces for the monthly trade on Main and limit myself to that. Even there most of my cards will be photocopied ones.

I love getting mail and especially decorated mail...but I will have to encourage my own distant friends to doodle more than to rely on artsy strangers to entertain me.


My address font proved to be immediately useful in my day job. Gwen the account executive wanted handwritten notes in each card. She gave me a short script: "To X, Best wishes from the Service Delivery Team and staff at Y Ltd." For two glorious days I transformed these simple words into a stack of curlicues and plumes for management in my company.

No one had any idea I have artistic pretensions so my wild flourishes stunned everyone in the company. Meaghan said she wanted my font on her computer. Lisa joked that I should write her Christmas cards. Hopefully this will translate into yearly commissions of Christmas card writing.

My goal by then is to master Queen Elizabeth I's signature.

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