I've recently joined a few yahoo mixed media art groups to try and get my creative juices flowing. I have wanted to start playing around with altered art but for some reason I have been having a hard time. For years I have been admiring artists online and reading anything I came across on the subject but for some reason when I sit down with my supplies I stare at the blank background and wonder where to start. So I joined the Arttechniques group and the Arttechniquesatcs group. These groups have really helped me. The technique group is where artist can post images of their ATC's or other art work and then share their technique. I have really learned alot in the short time I have been a member.
So each time I tried to alter a book it was like writers block only instead of not being able to write I could not create. This was something new to me. I have always been a "crafty" person. I could sit down with a pile of plastic flowers, lace and a gluestick and end up with something beautiful.
I was avoiding ATC's or Artist Trading Cards because I thought the 2 1/2 X 3 1/2 inch card would be such a small area to work on. I thought I would stifle myself with the sheer smallness of the background. Just imagine my surprise when I joined an Inchie swap. If your not involved with any mixed media art groups your probably wondering what the heck is an inchie. It sounds kind of dirty doesn't it. Rest assured it is as innocent as a new born baby. An inchie is a 1 inch by 1 inch background square of cardstock or watercolor paper that you decorate just like you would decorate an ATC or even an altered book. Now just imagine if you are having problems like I am trying to learn the art of book altering or of creating ATC's how stifling a 1 inch square of cardstock could be. NOT SO! I had the most fun decorating my set of Inchies for the swap hosted on the Arttechnique group. If anything the small area was easier to work with because it limits what you can do with it. Now I didn't have to sit at my work table for an hour going through my folders of images or opening my picture folder on my computer and staring at all the beautiful images of cabinet cards I have collected. Most of the images I have could not be resized down small enough to look good on my 1 inch squares. Take a look at the pictures of my Inchies and if you are having a hard time getting your creative juices flowing cut a couple of 1 inch strips off a strudy piece of pretty background paper and go to town painting, stamping, and altering that little square. I think you'll be surprised at how easy it is.