Marriage is a solemn and binding promise. Even those of us who opt for a civil wedding rather than a Christian or other religious ceremony are reminded of its essentially grave and restrictive nature, courtesy of stern words on the wall of the register office. Marriage, in my ATC for December’s CMP Exchange, is more of a shiny purple-and-gold promise. Much preferable to all that solemnity.

Artist Trading Card (2.5″ x 3.5″) Original, 1/1
Gouache & pen on cardstock

November’s end


For my contribution to November’s CMP ATC exchange on the theme “Remember”, I cut out and pasted strips of various greens from an art materials catalogue, collaging over them a representation of a Remembrance Day poppy whose black centre marks my first ever artistic use of a hole punch! The piece is fixed with a spritz of craft varnish, the downside being that it has scanned poorly, but hopefully the recipient will find something to like about the card itself. I enjoyed making it!

ATC Original (2.5″ x 3.5″)

Collage & pen/gouache on cardstock

Autumn song


How strange, two weeks ago, to find ourselves transported from Greek summer to English autumn in the space of a few hours. Strange, but magical: the England we returned to was the one I love, one of yellow, russet and crimson, of crisp blue morning skies and the smoky damp of dark, chilly evenings. The colours of the season have found their way into everything I’ve put to paper since then.

Melody on one of our many leaf-collecting expeditions …

… one of which inspired an entry in my sketch journal …

… another, a gloriously messy – but at least somewhat structured – two-hour painting session with Miss M herself …

… yet another, a playdate with materials, textures and compositions for this month’s CMP trading-card exchange on the theme of “A Song”. I’ve had great fun experimenting with combinations of gouache, acrylic, poster paints, gold leaf, pen, collage and spray varnish – all in the pocket-size ATC format.

The finished card:

ATC Original (2.5″ x 3.5″) “Chanson d’automne”
Mixed media on cardstock

Even this sketchbook doodle ended up sporting shades of sepia, burnt sienna and blue …



I’m enjoying my experiments with different media in the small format of the Artist Trading Card. (Link included for those of you who’ve confessed you had not a clue what I was on about in previous entries!)

ATC Original: “Sacred Geometry”
3.5 x 2.5″
Gold leaf, watersoluble wax pastel, pen & spray varnish on cardstock

This one’s for a fellow member of the ATC exchange organized by Amy of the Creative Mom Podcast, in response to the September prompt: “Pattern”. I go all tingly at the idea of underlying patterns in nature, as in art. Though the mathematical accuracy of my own golden spiral would fail to withstand even a casual glance, I’m happy with the finished piece. Just hope the recipient is too!

Let’s get small

1 Comment

I have entered the realm of the Artist Trading Card. Terrific fun!

“Como el Ave FĂ©nix, renacemos de nuestras cenizas …”
(Like the Phoenix, we are reborn from our ashes)
ATC Original: “PHOENIX”
2.5 x 3.5″ (click on the image for a much-enlarged view)
Poster paint, gold leaf, watersoluble wax pastel & pen on cardstock



Just when I thought those little hands (not to mention the chair, my trousers and the kitchen table) couldn’t possibly get any messier, M developed her own vigorous approach to colour mixing …

The cleanup time was considerable, but worth it for that full hour when she was happily involved in making handprints (my own role, as artist’s assistant, being to replenish the yoghurt pots with new colours and shove fresh paper under her hands at the command of “More!”) and I was able, at the same time, to make a satisfying mess of my own. Using my watercolours and M’s poster paints, I made some little prints using plasticine, rubber stamps, and string glued to card.

They don’t look like much at this stage, but they are destined to become ATCs. My first ATCs.