New England Artist Trading Cards Plus (ATCs+) Meetup Group Message Board › ALL ABOUT THE NE ATC+ MEETUP GROUP: Look here for everything you need to kno

ALL ABOUT THE NE ATC+ MEETUP GROUP: Look here for everything you need to know about our group!

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Group Organizer
Braintree, MA
Post #: 1,158

IMPORTANT: The Message Board is visible to everyone--not just in the group, but to the entire world. For that reason, we strongly recommend that you NOT post personal contact information such as your phone number, e-mail address or home address. If you need to get that info to another member, send a private e-mail through the website. See the end of this message for easy instructions on doing that.

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1. Go to the bottom of the message (or to the last message in the thread).
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5. To post your message, click "Submit" (at the bottom).
TIP: If there are multiple messages in a thread, you may want to read them all before you reply.

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2. Click on "Start a New Discussion" (at top of Message Board, under headline).
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4. At the top, in the "Subject" box, put something that describes your message.
TIP: If what you're posting involves a particular date or a "call to action," include that info in the subject line (for instance, "Field trip to MFA on May 5--please RSVP!)
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  • Need to edit your message? Just click on "Edit," (at the top of the message, make your changes and hit "Submit." To delete it, just hit "Delete."

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Group Organizer
Braintree, MA
Post #: 1,159

Profiles let other group members know a bit about you.

These profiles are public, so don't get TOO personal (and don't include contact info; if people want to reach you, they can do so by e-mailing you through the Web site).

Just introduce yourself, using your real name if it isn't evident from your user name. There are some ice-breaker questions that should help you with this task.

If you like, you may link to a Web site or upload a picture of yourself (or your work or your kids or you cat or anything else you like).

To create or update your profile:
1. From the overhead navigation bar, choose "My Profile."
2. Click on "View Profile."
2. On your profile, click "Edit Group Profile" link (upper left).
3. Fill in the blanks.
4. When finished, click "Save."

That’s all there is to it!


1. From the overhead navigation bar, choose "My Profile."
2. Click on "E-mail and Notifications."
3. Check or uncheck the boxes for each type of alert you do or don't want to receive.
4. To receive daily Message Board summaries (highly recommended for staying in touch with the group), check the Message Board preference box at the bottom of the page.
Group Organizer
Braintree, MA
Post #: 1,160

To help us all keep improving as we share our work, your organizers put together some updated ATC guidelines. Note that these guidelines are primarily for our themed ATC swaps, in which other participants randomly receive your cards.

First, please understand that nobody’s dictating—or even suggesting—what artistic approaches or materials you should use. Instead, these guidelines are intended to ensure that everybody’s swap cards are consistent in format and durability.

CONTENT: Can’t say it too often: There are no restrictions on content, other than that it’s nice if your swap cards at least somehow vaguely interpret the swap theme.

FORMAT: However, there are some inherent restrictions on the format for ATCs--especially for those submitted for themed swaps:

 Swap ATCs should measure 2.5 x 3.5 inches. No larger or smaller. Either horizontal or vertical orientation is OK.
 Swap ATCs should be fairly flat.
 Swap ATCs should fit into an ATC sleeve.

If your cards are too small or too large or too bulky to fit well in ATC sleeves, they may be fine pieces of artwork for other uses. But they’re not suitable for themed ATC swaps, where your trading partners expect cards that will fit in the binders used to store cards.

Exceptions: Swaps that are for 3-D cards. Also, larger cards that fold to ATC size are fine.


ATCs get handled a lot during the swap process and beyond, so it’s important to:

1. USE DURABLE MATERIALS.Things that will break, chip, crack, crumble, peel, rip or unravel should generally be avoided in swap cards. Use your judgment about dried or delicate natural materials, such as flowers, leaves or shells, which may crumble, brush off or shatter when handled (unless, for some reason, you *want* the work to deteriorate). If you use materials likely to smear or “bleed” when touched, you may wish to protect them with fixative.

2. USE DURABLE CARDS. Generally, if you can easily bend or curl your card without creasing it, it’s too thin. Examples of card materials that won’t hold up long include copy paper, construction paper, index cards, sketch paper, thin postcards and inexpensive greeting cards (but if you back these with more durable material, they should be fine).

We recommend using instead:
 Heavy-duty cardstock, or a couple of pieces of lighter cardstock glued together
 Heavy watercolor paper
 Playing cards (again, if too thin, you can back them with other material)
 Chipboard (either pre-cut cards or sheets that you can cut yourself)
 Cardboard (preferably un-corrugated, such as the kind used in cereal boxes or heavy-duty tissue cartons)
 Matboard or canvas (buy remnants at your local frame store and cut them up)
 Old gameboards (cut to ATC size)

…and probably others. We may sometimes use wood, metal, etc., but for the average swap, materials such as those listed above are your best bet.

3. USE GOOD ADHESIVES. Xyron machines and glue-dot rollers are great for sticking down paper; some gluesticks (especially Uhu) work fine on paper, too. But for heavier or bulkier (more 3-D) embellishments, you need stronger adhesives, such as:
 Tacky glue (clear or white, the lightest type of liquid glue available)
 E6000 or Gorilla Glue (heavier-duty permanent glue)
 Other glue specifically intended for heavy or metallic items

For items such as buttons, beads and sequins: Consider sewing them on. Eyelets, string and wire can also be used to attach embellishments. (If you’d like to see examples of the well-secured cards that we displayed, ask during a Meetup.)

Q: How can I tell whether I’ve adhered things well enough?
Brush your finished card gently with your fingertips, or hold it by a corner and shake it lightly, as if putting out a match. If nothing breaks off or goes flying, you’re fine.

BOTTOM LINE: Flimsy cards, fragile materials and the wrong adhesive will ultimately ruin your artwork and disappoint the recipients. That’s no fun for anyone. So anything flimsy, fragile or loose may be politely handed back for additional work.

AND A FINAL PRESENTATION REMINDER: All cards submitted for our swaps:
 Must be in ATC sleeves (to protect them)
 Must be submitted in an envelope with your name and the name of the swap on them (to make sure the right sets of cards get back to the right people).

Now…go make something!
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