What are they?
Artist Trading Cards (ATC, ATCs) are small artworks traded or exchanged among artists.The feature that defines an Artist Trading Card is size.They are always 2 1/2 x 3 1/2 inches (64 x 89 mm). The same size as sport trading cards and poker playing cards. Most works are on paper but metal, fabric, wood and plastic are also used. When an Artist Trading Card is a print or it is sold instead of exchanged, it is called an Art Card Editions and Originals (ACEO, ACEOs)
How do I make them?
Cut the cards from larger paper or buy them in pre-cut packs. On the back of the card place title of the piece, type of media, date, your name and contact information. Keep in mind collections are often stored in clear plastic sleeves, so thickness and textures are a factor in your in your designs.
History of Artist Trading Cards
Artist’s Trading Cards were brought to popularity through mail art projects during the Fluxus art movement (1950s and 60s) and through the efforts of Swiss artist M.V. Stimemann (1990s).
- Collect and store your cards in clear sport trading card sleeves.
- Display ATCs in a place where they can be viewed, like a basket or box.
- Frame them in groups for more impact.
- Use mini easels to feature your favorites.
- use a rubber stamp for the information on back of car.
- Store your collection in clear box
- Participate in or start local trading group
- Do a series on a single subject
- Make them for gifts
- Keep them handy for promotional opportunities
Books about Artist Trading Cards
Want to become an expert on ATCs? Expand your library with books on the subject.
- Artist Trading Card Workshop: Create, Collect, Swap
- Artist Trading Cards - Twenty to Make
- Artist Trading Card Techniques
- 1,000 Artist Trading Cards: Innovative and Inspired Mixed Media
- Create Miniature Works of Art Using Textiles and Mixed Media
Supplies for Artist Trading Cards
Are you ready to make your own artist trading cards? Get your project going with the right supplies!
Here is a handy list to get you started. click to see details.
- Bristol Artist Trading Cards (smooth), Pack of 20 cards
- Watercolor 140lb Cold Press Artist Trading Cards, Pack of 10 cards
- Solid Core Black (smooth finish) Artist Trading Cards, Pack of 20
- Artist Trading Card Canvas Pad for Oils and Acrylics
Display and Presentation