Welcome to my April edition.
In this month’s imaginarium I’m looking into the practice of art card trading, a simple upcycled DIY tutorial, and what I learned about resumes.
Amidst all the chaos with Covid-19, and lock-down times, there is still some hope: if we work together by curbing the spread of the disease and lending emotional support to those who are struggling will unite the world. I hope we emerge from this with more compassion and tolerance for each other.
I’m reminded of the cycles of life when I see the leaves fluttering to the ground. It’s time to take stock and gather my thoughts for the tasks in the coming months. There’s a lingering feeling of ‘’closure’’ and things coming to an end, which is excellent for tying up projects. I’ve recently completed a year-long project, that’s leading to an entirely new, albeit daunting, project. I’m planning my first solo exhibition. It’s easy once you break it down to more digestible chunks, but the amount of work that goes into it is quite ulcer-inducing. It’s new territory or me, and I’m learning a lot as I go.
How would you tackle an art exhibition?
Speaking of daunting things, another one is polishing one’s resume for a prospective job. After college, I had no idea how to write a professional resume or Curriculum Vitae. Trial and error helped me get it just right. No one wants a boring text-only document with the same old information presented in the same old way anymore. It is imperative to stand out from the crowd and impress the person reading your resume.
A resume in its essence is a summary of your achievements and work experience. A good rule of thumb is to start with your name and contact details. Although I favour a 2-pager, most companies prefer 1 page resumes. Summaries about your application are generally on the page as well, but I prefer to keep it in a separate in a cover letter. The rest of the information is your education, skills, recent employment history, awards and achievements, and even your community involvement. It is preferred to keep the design clean and simple, but a little creativity can also be an asset. So what makes a CV or a Curriculum Vitae different from a resume? CV’s consist of a few more pages, listing your entire employment history and pedigree. It’s usually accompanied by copies of your certificates, diplomas and references from previous employers and educators.
My template is designed to catch the eye at the right place and has all the relevant information, but not in an essay layout. Sure, it’s risky to present a more creative-looking resume, but that would also depend on who the recipient is. I definitely won’t be sending mine to a corporate stiff-upper-lip company.
Do you have a resume layout that works well for you? You can also download my template and adjust it to suit your needs. I’ve made A4 and US letter sizes, and added a cover letter along with the other assets I used.
Something that I recently stumbled upon is the practice of trading art cards. These miniature artworks are traded or swapped and bring artists together, thus creating a global art community. Trades can be done at events or even online. Every medium is welcome as long as it adheres to the standard size of 2.5″ x 3.5″ (6,35cm x 8.89cm). They should be able to fit into a standard trading card sleeve. ATCs originated from the Swiss artist, Vanci Stirnemann back in the mid-’90s.
Vanci created 1200 art cards for an exhibition which culminated in him trading his cards with other artists. It was so popular that the idea spread like wildfire. Some artists opt to sell their cards, which is then called Art Card Editions and Originals (ACEOs).
The benefits of trading art cards include getting your name as an artist out into the world, and this could also open doors for opportunities such as collaborations, group exhibitions and even getting collectors to notice your art. These cards also make thoughtful gifts, and because they’re so small, their carbon footprint is low as well. There are many online groups dedicated to the trading of art cards, and you can join any one of them or start your own. Have a look at these groups if you want to join in or be inspired:
I’d love to start a digital swap group with you, and if you’re keen as well, you can download my trio of art cards here:
When it comes to the simplicity of using technology, we quickly take for granted that there was a time before computers, devices and typewriters. Not to give away my age here, but I remember the first computers, and how exciting it was to type on one of them. I tried out every character on the keyboard, and when I made a mistake, I could press backspace. Now typewriters, on the other hand, are a whole different beast. For a while, my high school offered typing and music as subjects, and because I didn’t have an instrument and typewriters were provided in class, I chose the typing. These were electric typewriters, and not what I had in mind at all. It was a horrible subject, and I suspect the teacher was Dolores Umbridge in disguise, with her grey, bland funeral attire and stern face. Whenever she looked at you, her round spectacles glinted evilly, and you could even hear her lips crack as she pursed them tightly. Even ‘til today I defiantly refuse to apply the principles she taught in typing class. I make a point to look at my keyboard, and I only use my right thumb, both middle fingers, and right index when I type. Vive la resistance! I also have a habit of typing too fast for the computer to keep up, I’ve managed to crash a Mac, various laptops and a pc on a few occasions.
And to think that there was a time when all typing was done by hand. My handwriting is just as fast as my typing and usually indiscernible. When I write thank-you notes, however, I pull off my Sunday-best: All block letters in a straight line. I cannot write cursive convincingly, and I wish I could blame it on being left-handed, but I’ve seen other lefties write cursive, and they put me to shame. I’ve seen handwriting that is so superb; you want to frame it behind glass and marvel at its beauty. Often I wonder what a graphologist would say about my writing.
Graphology, or handwriting analysis, dates back to the 17th century, but the word was only coined in the 18th century by Jean Michon. This method was used to identify the writer’s personality, especially in understanding the minds of criminals. Handwriting is analysed by looking at every element: the pressure of the pen/pencil on the page, the slant of the strokes, the straightness and curvature of the baseline, letter size, as well as the spacing between letters and words. All of this can allegedly determine the writer’s mood, and by comparing the sample to another document, it is easy to spot a forgery. This is good to know if you suspect someone forged your signature! If you want to analyse your handwriting, here’s a handy chart (ahem, pardon the pun) and a quick reference guide:
Boxes seem to multiply whenever I turn my back, and despite my best efforts, they keep cropping up. So I get quite excited whenever I find a DIY to do something with them other than storage. Here is a couple of useful DIYs for those delivery boxes that lurk around the house:
A stand for your smartphone:
A shoebox projector:
Vintage book storage box:
Thank you for reading and please share with your art-minded friends and family. They can also subscribe to my newsletter here:
In next month’s edition, I’ll share which desktop and mobile apps I use to get my images Insta-ready. I have another cute DIY and a template that got me noticed by a gallery.
To celebrate Ostara, here’s a yummy lemony sweet recipe for you to try out:
Until next month, #daretomakeart and have an inspiring April, and stay safe. Lisa If you missed out on previous editions, you can still read it and download the resources here.