Introduction to ATCs (Artist Trading Cards)

Hello friends! Shannon Smith here to share my introduction to ATCs with you. When I say “my introduction” I really mean MY introduction.

  When Heather Collins told me about the new monthly subscription ATC kit, I figured I would give it a whirl. I had heard of them, seen where people were swapping them, but that is about it. I decided I wanted to see what they were all about. To be honest, I wondered what the purpose of an ATC was.

 Well after having a good play, I am here to tell you…. I LOVE them! I would love to share a few of the reasons I do. I will likely share a more technique based post here soon using ATCs but I figured I would simply share what I made and explain a little more about what ATCs are about in this post.

I created 6 sets of 3 coordinating ATCs just to show you a variety of styles. The possibilities are endless really. This is a taste of what you can do:

This first set was created using the July ATC kit. It was nice, quick and easy to put this set together using so many fun embellishments and papers from the kit. One of the things I found I enjoyed was how much focal attention a smaller stamp can get on an ATC vs. a traditional card. 

Here are a few of the products I used:

Fireworks – Mini Mixed Media Stencil

Firecrackers Stamp set

I made a fun rainbow card a while back, and just couldn’t part with the cute strips of paper I trimmed off to make that card (I don’t get attached to all my scraps I promise). These little strips sat on my craft table for weeks until I started creating these ATCs. They worked out perfectly for this little set. I also took the opportunity to use some of my mini stencil collection with embossing powders as a common link between them.

Ultra Fine Embossing Powder – Icicle

Ultra Fine Embossing Powder – Alabaster

Mini Layering Stencil – Layering Flower

Mini Layering Stencil – Sunshine

I think this set was one of the most fun to create. I definitely let my hair down and dove into experimenting with mixed media. I had just a bit of burlap ribbon left from the farm Inspiration kit. It was fun using paste and embossing powders, and metallic Aqua Pigments. I also pulled out a bunch of random trinkets from my craft stash, and was able to utilize things I have had for a decade. ATCs are a perfect way to try out new techniques! The commitment is less daunting as you are working with such a small canvas. It is a great opportunity to be bold!

Metallic Aqua Pigment – Collection – Metals

Metallic Embossing Powder – Penny

Metallic Embossing Powder – Gilded

Metallic Embossing Powder – Sterling

For this set I used some card panels from the Boardwalk Inspiration kit. I enjoyed taking the bigger card panels and zeroing in on an area I wanted to use for my ATC. Once again I played around with a technique. I used some alcohol markers to create a festive background for my carousel.

Salt Water Taffy – Card Panels

Boardwalk – 6×8 Stamp

I really enjoyed working within a theme for each set of ATCs. I used sets from the Rainbow box to create these ones. This background was from a paper I used to clean glaze off of a stencil. I ended up loving the result and was happy to use it for these.

Groovy Friend – 6×8 Stamp

Party Bus – 3×4 Stamp

CYOE – 2×3

Sometimes I have looked at a stamp set and thought “But when would I have an occasion that would fit a card made from this”? First off, I don’t encourage this line of thinking when creating. Why not create it? If you like it, you will find a use for it. Even if that use is decorating your own crafty space. Here is another benefit of an ATC though. You can create on this smaller, less committal canvas and then turn it into a card later if you want to.Simply adhere your ATC to a card panel and card base and Voila! You are set.

Rock On – 6×8 Stamp Set

Abstract Art

Embossing Powder – Mic Drop

Glitter Glaze – Silver

Silver Glitter Sequins

Mirrorstock – Prism

So now you have seen what I was able to do with my 18 trading cards. I hope you are inspired to create some cards of your own. Please share on the Brutus Monroe Fan Club page. I can’t wait to see your creations! I know there are fun things in store for the ATC kits. I am really looking forward to making more! ATC Kit

To see more, click on the link to my ATC video: Crafty Shannonigans

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