back in the swing of things

3 Sep

Well I guess things are finally back to normal: it’s Saturday, I’m in 100 Mile House and writing a GIANT mail art blog post. Being back in the swing of things feels good. I was greeted by several lovely things in the post box this week and there was a good flow of outgoing mail that has arrived as of late also. First, my adorable hand-painted owls that I ordered from Kayleigh Buck‘s (@illustratingkay) etsy shop arrived. They are so small, cuter than ever and have found a happy home on the small shelf in my studio! The zine making mad-man known as Tim Conley (@aproposzine) is the mastermind behind the VERY limited collaged mix-media editions titled “Apropos Zine.”  This particular piece began print based, with Tim experimenting with a new way to create engravings – he was scratching into vinyl records!!! As awesome as the idea was, Time unfortunately had a struggle printing the plates, and thus “was forced to cover up these very vague prints with collage and some creative use of paint.” Like all of Tim’s zines, I feel honoured to own this edition and I add it proudly to my bookshelf! Amanda Nicole White (@amanda_ink) blew my mind with her second package in the series of 26 themed around the alphabet. As you can guess, “B” was the letter and all things inside were B-related. Upon opening the package I discovered buttons made of BOIS (french for wood), a BOOK necklace, a business card printed on balsa wood and a small box which housed two bottles: one containing buttons and one containing “the big bang theory” definition. HOLY INNOVATIVE BATMAN! The fun didn’t stop with a 4 page typewritten personal letter that was bound like a book, 4 original hand pulled prints (Bear, Bunny, Bluejay and British columbia western red cedar), two altered book pages “begin at the beginning” and “binary stars,” 3 letter-press printed posters for the OCAD book fair and bit of “B” found ephmera. She is SO generous and SO talented. Speaking of talent, Anika Starmer (@aisforanika) sent me a package I’ve been anxiously awaiting, as it contained our collaborative project “patterns & paws.” Along with progressed sketchbooks was a bonny pile of treats: the original painting I won in Anika’s giveaway, cute stickers, an AWESOME embroidered trout (which reminded me of out n’ about trouts), stick on earrings, sick geometric drawing, some fun ephemera, a pile of assorted graph paper and another one of her handprinted cards. To see the progress on our collaboration, keep your eyes on this blog next week, as I will be posting her additions to both sketchbooks very soon!Yesterday a wee package from my BC buddy Jeannine Saylor (@saylor_made) showed up and it of course was filled with many fun, collected, bits of ephemera. Favorites among the bundle include the 2 animal stamps (deer & saw whet owls!), an original feather transfer image of Jeannine’s, a funny cartoon about the royal couple, a stamped “win” card, and a rainbow drawing by one of her daughters. How cute is that? Oh & might I add that she admitted that brussel sprouts are starting to look appetizing? Progress people!I had to send something off to Rhya Tamasauskas (@Rhyat), because she gifted me a little diorama and said it was to tide me over as she was still working on something. I am scared of how epically awesome this ‘something’ is going to be. So in the meantime, I wanted to make sure her postbox wasn’t getting lonely, and thus made a postcard out of an alphabet flashcard & then taped a mini handmade envelope to the back and filled it with a bit of fun ephemera and a photo of a cheezburger cat doing an air guitar solo. For Beverly Ealdama (@beverly_e) I sent a cardboard envelope fancied up with washi tape and color coordinated addresses & vintage stamps. Inside was a pile of quotations on vellum, because she does mostly typographic artworks. A set of comic book pogs and a big cartoon head sticker were also in there along with found ephemera including a bike illustration, wildlife stamps, dayplanner stickers, a stencil ruler and a set of un-opened San Francsico coasters (found HERE in a thrift shop)! At the last minute, after finding out her favorite animals were tigers, koalas and dogs, I added in some cute stickers and a funny illustrated flash card for some extra treats. I’ve missed my friend Carney Oudendag terribly since leaving the valley, and wanted to write her a little thank you note for being such a wonderful person and influence in my life! I used one of the cards & envelopes created during my snail mail surprises workshop. Other people I’m missing a lot are my pals at the Scotty Burger Cafe: Kristine, Ruth and Nick. It’s torture enough not being able to eat their delicious food, but being without their company is definitely worse. I wanted them to know that I was thinking of them often, and so I sent an envelope of scantily clad ladies filled with just a few little reminders of my love: a post-it “i fucking miss you guys… bad,” a joke sticker about the health facility shutting the place down (which is extra funny cause Kristine got 100% on her health inspection) and lastly an “i can has cheezburger” cat, who in some ways represents me without their deliciuos scotty burgers in 100 Mile House, a fat cat sits under a BBQ in the snow with the subtitle “I waitz here for cheezburgers.” Robert Sae-Heng (@mrRubbertoes) got his first dose of mail art from me. After writing inspiring & supportive e-mails to each other for a few months, it felt right to move our correspondence to snail mail. The first thing I grabbed for him was an epic sticker with a spray paint can turning into a corpse. Made me think of Rob and his AMAZING skills with murals and spray paint – it truly is a part of him! Also in the handmade envelope adorned with a swallow was a small screenprint of a bison, one of my cross-bearing ram notes and tons of fun found ephemera, my favorite of which is the MUSCLES advertisement from the 1970’s. Hope he loved the beginning of something wonderful!Michelle Ashton (@zbyshka) was “beary” spoiled with her last package from me. From magazine cut outs, to stickers, cards and originals, over 20 individual bears are featured in there. My two favorire things? The thick wooden cut out of a bear silhouette that I found in a thrift shop here. The second is a series of photographs I did that document the travels of a 3D bear sticker Michelle gifted me… she said she had a hard time giving him away, so I decided to gift him back to her with a collection of his Canadian memories.

My future sister-in-law Noi Helm sent me a lovely card congratulating John and I on our engagement on behalf of her, Mike and their cutie daughter Lucy. Plus a Martha Stewart Wedding magazine, so I can flip through the pages and start fantasizing. How sweet! Lastly, Amanda Mcnair (@shmanda13) texted me and said that my mail art package was a nice boost after a rough week. I was particularly proud of the envelope I sent her goodies in: the cardboard box that used to house my mickey mouse stationery. Amanda loves oragami and is a true paper crane master, so when I found this CHRISTMAS oragami book, I thought it would be the best gift it to her 3 months before the holidays, along with  a plentiful pile of scrapbook papers that I cut down for her to play with. A lovely note was written on a filigree deer a/p and I also added in some funny blank note cards. As always, I hope these posts make peeking into mailboxes fun! Your comments and feedback are encouraged and welcome.

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10 Responses to “back in the swing of things”

  1. kimi 03/09/2011 at 13:32 #

    Wow, there is *so* *much* *mail*! It must have taken hours to put this post together. Thank you for sharing pics of all the fascinating collections you’re sending and receiving. Fun to check out all the little bits and treasures hidden in each photo. I’m working on your next package and hope to send it off soon!

  2. Anna Jane Searle 03/09/2011 at 13:41 #

    Thank you so much for sharing all this awesomeness with us. The bear PACKAGE is amazing. That was so nice of you to send back Michelle that cute sticker. That drawing Anika gave you is so beautiful and intricate. I really should do snail mail with her at some point soon. Loving all the funky envelopes and those owls are to DIE FOR…..I would love to get some myself. May ask for some for xmas. The two glass bottles are such a brilliant idea.

  3. mizhenkale 03/09/2011 at 13:52 #

    You’re the best!

  4. anika 03/09/2011 at 13:55 #

    Wow, girl, you really did have your work cut out for you today! Great job with the post. It’s always fun to see how you arrange all the mailed goodies you get. I have scans of our collab sitting on my computer. I should get around to posting about it too! This is a long weekend, so I’m hoping I’ll have time.

  5. Carol | @imsilverfeather 04/09/2011 at 15:11 #

    Oh my goodness! You have really been busy there. I so love all the animals that are in your work. It’s all such amazing coolness. So happy you were able to share it with all of us. I look forward to our swap : ) Something is winging it’s way to you as I write!

  6. Jessika Dené Tarr 04/09/2011 at 19:52 #

    Found you through the collaboration you did with Anika and love that you do these mail art exchanges! Such a fun idea! Love all of the things that you make for them and the awesome package designs as well. Looking forward to seeing more, hopefully!

    • naturesmyfriend 04/09/2011 at 22:01 #

      Thanks Jessika! There is always more!!! I usually try to post a mail art article every weekend, so do come back and visit again!

  7. Jeannine | SaylorMade 05/09/2011 at 09:15 #

    I look forward to these posts and totally understand the large amount of work it takes to put them together.

    I am continuing to be amazed by Amanda’s packages and the special themed mail art exchange you have going.

    Happy to hear you enjoyed my package.:D

  8. Emily Orpin 05/09/2011 at 22:32 #

    Oh my goodness! Your mail box definitely isn’t lonely! So many amazing packages – that super big bear one you put together is pretty amazing, but I think my favourite of this group is the ‘B’ themed one, so lovely and so clever!

  9. Anna Gwenllian 07/09/2011 at 13:18 #

    wow these are amazing!! i love the little bear sticker going on his travels! you are busy busy :) xxx

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