Art Supplies

Ideas for Artist Cards

January 19, 2015

female_illustration by R. RageBy Alina Bradford

Illustration by R. Rage
Artist cards are small, original pieces of art that are traded from one person to the next. If you would like to start making your own artist trading cards, or you need some inspiration for you next batch, here are some ideas for artist cards to get your creative juices pumping.

Miniature Mixed Media Art

Since artist cards are so small and inexpensive, they are the best place to try mixing mediums. Try mixing pastel with colored pencil, watercolor with acrylic or ink with tempera. If you can’t decide what to mix try this artist game:

  1. Take one item from each type of media, such as a pencil, pen, tube and stick
  2. Hold all of the items in your hands
  3. Throw them in the air over carpet or a throw that will cushion the item’s landing so that they don’t break on impact
  4. Combine the media that lands on the floor touching each other


Collage Artist Trading Cards

While you are in the mixed media artist cards frame of mind, combine painting mediums with paper and other small objects to create a collage artist card. Some objects that can be combined for artistic collages are:

  • Beads
  • Rags and cloth
  • Threads, yarn or ribbons
  • Dried flowers
  • Keys
  • Bottle tops
  • Pages from old books
  • Coins

Try to find a common theme in the objects you gather, such as a common color, age and texture, or go the opposite direction and use only contrasting items.Pressed Flower Painting for Collectible Artwork

Another experimental art technique that works well in a card format is pressed flower painting. This is when a flower, or any type of foliage, is pressed to release its juices onto a canvas or art paper. To learn more about this technique read Pressed Flower Painting: Using Foliage for Art. Please see the photos at the bottom of this article for an example of this type of art technique.

Artist Cards for Digital Artists

If you’re a digital artist, there’s no need to feel left out of the artist card trading fun.

You can easily turn your digital art into trading cards using these steps:

  1. Open your artwork in photo editing software or art software such as Corel Paint Shop Pro Photo X2 Ultimate
  2. Use the resize feature to make the digital art 2.5″ by 3.5″ or 6.35 by 8.89 cm, which is the standard size for an artist trading card
  3. Print your digital art onto acid-free card stock

Whenever you are in need of some ideas for artists cards, remember these tips and you will be creating collectible artwork in no time.

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