Thursday, July 15, 2010

Snizzers & Gwoo

You may be reading the title of this post and wondering whether I recently suffered a head injury.  No, I haven't forgotten how to spell; this is actually the name of my Etsy shop

The name is derived from a mispronunciation of "scissors and glue" - when my nieces were little, this is what they called those two items.  And since I am a collage artist, the name made perfect sense to me.  My favorite part about the name is hearing grown adults try to say it.  I've had lots of practice, although my nieces are now 11 and 13 and fully capable of pronouncing the words correctly (even though they'll still say it the "cute" way if I ask them to, which I do often).

In my lifelong trek through ephemera, this storefront may be the most surprising aspect of the whole trip thus far.  To me, it is the utmost compliment to have someone not only like my work but to pay money to have it.  Having worked mainly with ATCs (Artist Trading Cards) for the last four years, it was a huge leap to make items for sale.  I mean, I've always treated each ATC as if I were selling it; the quality of my work is very important to me.  But this is the first time I've ever put myself out there.  It's a very vulnerable position to be put in!

But enough about the psychology of selling!  I'm starting to figure out what types of ephemera seem to be the most popular:

  • Maps.  People LOVE maps!  I count myself amongst these folks - there is just something about them.  Maybe for some, it brings back great memories of road trips.  For others, it just may be the pleasing orderliness to the design or that lovely light blue color.  Whatever it is, they never seem to go out of style!
  • Vintage.  Whether it be a snippet of a tiny playing card, part of a Life magazine ad or an old 45 RPM record jacket, the older paper I use seems to make people smile.  I think this is a purely nostalgia reaction - I know that's what it is for me!
  • NumbersI get my numbers from all over the place!  Some come from junk mail, some from discarded office equipment, some from old price tags.  There's a beauty and a rhythm to numbers, and people just seem to respond positively to them.
I feel so fortunate that I am able to spend my days amongst piles and piles of paper, magazines, brochures, maps and mail items and just play.  That's what it really comes down to - I get to play all day!  My Kindergarten teacher, Mrs. Seeman, would be so proud of me; her only "complaint" on my report card was that "Melissa has trouble working with scissors and paste".   :D

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