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Wednesday, August 10, 2011

What the heck are ATCs anyway?

Artist trading cards (ATCs) are miniature works of art!  They are about the same size as modern baseball cards, or 2 ½ X 3 ½ inches (63 mm X 89 mm).  They are small enough to fit inside standard card-collector pockets, sleeves or sheets and they can be created with any material imaginable. Some cards are produced in editions (a limited number of the same card), some in series (a set of cards with a unifying theme), and some are singular originals.

An offshoot of ATCs are the "Art Cards, Editions and Originals" also known as ACEO. ACEOs originated when some artists began to create cards to sell, and/or trading among themselves.

Here is an example of how popular these little cards have become...

This week on August 11, the Confederation Center of the Arts in Charlottetown, Prince Edward Island is holding it's fifth annual Artist Trading Card event!  It's Fifth!  There are more than 60 artists from all over the maritimes participating!  There will be local artists to Prince Edward Island as well as artists from New Brunswick, Nova Scotia, Newfoundland and Labrador and Ontario.

The event starts at 7 p.m. in Memorial Hall as part of the Thursday in the Gallery series. This year's submissions include a wide variety of techniques including linocuts, watercolours, collage, and mixed media creations.

I am not able to attend, but I'll give you a sneak peek of the card I submitted:

It's called "I Believe, I Wish"  The original painting is watercolor and acrylic on 140 lb watercolor paper. I love how this image turned out.  I submitted signed, limited edition prints of this painting.  What do you think?

I have created several ATC and ACEOs and they do seem to be quite popular.  If you are an artist, leave a comment, and share your experiences with Art Trading Cards and ACEO's.  Do you find they are popular as well?  And do you sell them or use them primarily for trading with other artists?  Do you use prints or originals or both?  


  1. Wow! I have to admit I have never heard of ATC's....until now. What a great idea and your card is definitely wonderfully done.

  2. First, I love the card you submitted! I wish I new about this! I love the colours you used Jo-Ann! I used to only paint on larger canvases, but for the past 2 years, I find I am only painting aceo size! People love them! I guess it's something you can collect, that won't take up a lot of space, it isn't too expensive and you can enjoy art from all over the world. I only sell originals. For myself, I prefer only to buy originals, but I do have a couple of prints ;o) Have a great day! Oh, they are great gifts too! I know people who buy them for stocking stuffers at Christmas.

  3. Thanks very much, Ann...they are fun to do, too. I like to have a 3 or 4 that I work on all at the same time. Keeps it fresh and if you make a mistake you don't stress about it too much :-)

  4. Thank you, Stacy! ACEOs are fun to paint and collect...They are going to send me the ACEOs from the other artists in the mail, I will have to post them when they arrive. I think I prefer using them as originals, too. This seemed to be the best option since I had to make 62 of them and was running short on time!

    Sorry you didn't know about this earlier...darn! I should have posted this on my blog when I first learned of it...there is always next year, though.

  5. 62??? Holy! LOL! When you know next year, let us know, really early! LOL!


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