Thanks to Jessi Peterson for this awesome guest post!
We decided this year to offer more passive arts programming in our
Young Adult Lounge. Targeting a time
that works for busy teens to attend a program is often hit and miss, so we
thought we would try unscheduling instead and have materials available for them
whenever they are here. We wanted
something that would be low key, low cost, and definitely with low potential
for mess, since the lounge isn’t staffed.
I read a blog post a while ago about Artist Trading Cards (ATCs) and
thought we would give that a try. The
cards are just cardstock cut into a mini canvas, most often 2 ½ by 3 ½ inches,
which is about the same size as a baseball card or a business card. Then we dug through our craft supplies and
put out colored pencils, markers, embroidery floss, patterned paper scraps,
punches and glue and waited for the mini-masterpieces to be created!
Teens are invited to make ATCs to
take with them, to trade with friends or to leave in the Free Trade box next to
the art supplies. So far teens have left collages, self-portraits, mandalas, as
well as abstract creations. I don’t
know how many have been traded, but there are new cards in the box on a regular