If your children like to collect, make friends and create art, they will love the idea of art in your pocket. In Europe in 1996, the concept of Artists Trading Cards was born.
Essentially, ATCs are little works of art that can be traded for other little works of art. They must be original, self produced art and must not be sold; only exchanged. The goal of the activity is artists meeting other artists, in person, snail mail or online to trade their art works, thereby exposing each other to personal art styles.
This is a valuable activity for kids which allows them to express their creativity and to make friends in the community and all over the world. It’s open to any and all art/craft/design techniques, so anyone can take part.
ATCs must be created on 2 1/2 x 3 1/2 card stock or other sturdy surface. They can be created with stamps, stickers, collages, crayons,water colors, markers, tissue paper, etc.
The work of art is on one side and the artist’s signature, date and title of the ATC on the other side. Some artist also list their website or other contact information. Collectors put the ATCs in a binder in 9 pocket plastic sheets – like other collectible cards (i.e. baseball cards) are usually kept.
I plan on introducing this idea in our after school play group so our children can create and then trade with each other and eventually others.
For more information, check out:
For swapping information, visit:
For examples of ATCs made by children, stop by:
Article By Nuria Almeida
Photo By jimmiehomeschoolmom