07 January 2010

The November Art Swap: A Story

Click on any of these photos for a larger view.

A few months ago (or was it more?), I signed up for Swap-Bot, a website dedicated to artists' exchanges. I simply love the idea of giving and receiving art simply for the sake of celebrating creativity, and I am like a child at Christmas when it comes to getting things in the mail.

The first swap I signed up for was a simple one - a letter exchange. My letter was sent off, I received a lovely card covered in roses, and I was thrilled with the whole thing. In November, I signed up for a swap which required more involvement, in which each participant sent a surprise homemade gift.

I put together my parcel: an unlined leather journal, bound by me (above); a few ATCs; a letter of introduction; a ribbon hair bow or two; and a little art doll who reminded me of Buddha (he can be seen in the far left of the first photo in this post). Then off it went to Canada.

A short time later, a package arrived for me. I tore it open giddily and found a beautiful butterfly pin (below), glittery card, and yummy sweets from Viola in the Netherlands*. Oh, joys!

The dear woman to whom I sent my things wrote to me and asked if she might send me a small gift in thanks; on the 24th of December I opened two beautifully wrapped pieces of jewelry, a beaded ring and a necklace (see the first photo of this post).

How wonderful it is, giving and receiving! If you are looking for a way in which to reach out to other artists around the globe, I sincerely suggest trying out a swap or two. You'll be inspired and enchanted and impressed, and are sure to connect with many creative people.


*Swap-Bot's one-to-one swaps do not mean "I send something to you, and you send something to me"; they mean, "You will send to me and I will send to someone else and that person will send to another someone else." This confuses me every time.


Brandi said...

Gorgeous! I love this idea. I've visited Swap Bot before but I was never sure how to find a swap to participate in -- I was overwhelmed by how many there were.

Ingrid said...

Thanks, lovely! There are quite a lot of swaps, but I suppose that that's a good thing in the end as you can find one that suits you perfectly. If you go here: you can search swaps by category, keyword, end date, and so on.

Letter-writing ones are good to start with, too, just to see how the whole thing works. Please let me know if you give it a go!


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