I'm a former wandering gypsy, now living in Florida where the primeval beauty of the Big Cypress swamp and the longest coastline of any state except Alaska satisfy certain of my inner needs. It's also a great jumping off point for the Bahamas, the Caribbean & Latin America. I lived in India for several years working with a snake catcher; traveled with Ringling Brothers Circus (living on the train); lived on a sailboat in the Bahamas & Caribbean for 5 years. My numerous occupations have included newspaper staff writer, assembly-line worker in a cockroach trap factory, librarian, charter-boat cook, dog walker in NYC, proprietor of a shop selling beach paraphernalia in the Virgin Islands and, most consistently, free-lance travel writer. Travel, adventure & being easily distracted are all prime motivators in my life!
Writing & photography were always my creative outlets, but lately I'm exploring mixed media collage & miniature book making. I originally joined Swap-Bot for non-touristy postcard exchanges as I'm always on the lookout for quirky or whimsical imagery. But I'm a long-time fan of (and participant in) mail art, so I've become more involved in collage & handmade postcard & mail art swaps. I appreciate things created with wit, originality, a sense of humor - or just because they're beautiful or intriguing. I like clever, off-beat, esoteric stuff. Girlie cutesy doesn't cut it for me. (Maybe I'm still rebelling against a mother who tried too hard to make me pink and frilly.) But I do enjoy whimsy. I love getting postcards & envelopes decorated with art work, collage, etc. And lots & lots of cool stamps!
Though I caved to peer pressure & created a Flickr account, I'm REALLY bad about keeping it updated with images of mail art I've sent! Social media in general eludes me. There are never enough hours in the day for all the other things I find far more interesting to do.
My musical taste is pretty eclectic, but I particularly like acoustic guitar, Reggae, Latin jazz, World Music in general. A few of my favorite musicians are Mose Allison, Nina Simone, Joni Mitchell & Paco de Lucia.
My passport is my favorite book. I read a lot of nonfiction. When I get interested in a subject I read about it voraciously. I enjoy poetry & have been trying my hand at haiku and tanka. Theodore Roethke, ee cummings, & Shel Silverstein are often on my bedstand. Nick Bantock always inspires. Jorge Luis Borges, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Kurt Vonnegut, Mark Twain, Ursula Le Guin & Kipling are among my long time favorites.
My top 5 favorite films are La Strada, L'Atalante, The Gods Must be Crazy, Walkabout, The Triplets of Belleville. My choices seem to reflect my penchant for living on boats; circuses; exotic locales & eccentric characters. I watch a lot of foreign & indie films because I find them to be generally more subtle and thoughtful than mainstream Hollywood.
Mixed media collage, (mainly postcards) & occasionally miniature books. Because I've always been a writer and photographer I often incorporate words and photos into my crafts.
For store-bought postcard swaps I much PREFER RECEIVING POSTCARDS SENT BLANK, IN AN ENVIE, even if the swap calls for them to be sent naked. I understand if you can't do that, but that's my preference & I'll never rate you down for sending that way.
NO tourist cards please, unless the swap specifically calls for them. Even then I'd prefer something non-touristy.
NO more 3x5 vintage cards, please. I have way too many of them!
NO Christian themes or Bible verses.
I am not fond of color-it-yourself or Zazzle cards.
POSTCARDS I'D ESPECIALLY LIKE TO RECEIVE
Ken Brown's cards
Glen Baxter cards, particularly his cowboy series. There's one called "My capucinno" that I'd so love to find in my mailbox.
cards by Brest Brest Brest, like this one which was in the Curious Feast: 100 Postcards by 10 Artists
Art & architecture of Friedensreich Hundertwasser
Cards featuring HANDS or EYES
Black & white photography (anything from Fotofolio & Nouvelles Images for example.)
Jerry Uelsmann's photomontages
Inge Look's old ladies
The graphic art of Corita Kent
Mythology, mythological beings
Astrological symbols, animals, etc.
Blimps, dirigibles, Zeppelins
The Little Prince
Kliban's comic art
People dancing joyfully
Mexican Loteria cards
Dia de los Muertos
Lantern Press cards
Unusual animals - think sloths, armadillos, aardvarks, platypuses, etc.
Unusual birds, tropical birds, Painted Buntings
Eadweard Muybrige's animals or people in motion
Close ups of nature, like the patterns on a beetle, the eye of a fish, etc.
Art cards, particularly collage artists, graffiti art, street art, "outsider" art, & found object creations.
Paintings by the Florida Highwaymen.
Some favorite artists: Magritte, Robert Rauschenberg, Charlie Harper, Joan Miro, Keith Haring, Dali, Georgia O'Keefe, Joseph Cornell, Mayumi Oda, Frida Kahlo, Saul Steinberg.
Winslow Homer's paintings of Florida and the Bahamas.
Seminole or Miccosoukee people
Cyanotypes (blueprints or sun prints)
Hindu or Buddhist deities
Edward Gorey's illustrations
Matchbox cover art
Cigar Box Label art (love those old lithographs)
Great graphic Design
Humor, particularly off-beat, droll, or dry.
Vintage educational charts
Signs, especially odd or humorous ones
Naughty Little People
Rock & Roll & 1960's musicians
Snoopy (from the Peanuts cartoons)
Ikea cards (4x6 size)
Kaj Stenvall cards
Popeye the Sailor Man
Troubled Birds (a series of postcards that crack me up!)
Vintage India or Afghanistan
Lenticular (3-D) cards (but not those "Magic Eye" cards. I have monocular vision & can never see the hidden images.)
Postcards that squeak!
Postcards with googly eyes!
Squeaky postcards WITH googly eyes! (I have only one - a circa 1950s alligator - and he'd so love to be the start of a collection :))
Upside-down heads, sometimes called Topsy Turvys, in which the image changes when you flip it. Like this:
My Postcrossing favorites (link above) may give you an idea of the kinds of cards I like.
If you're inclined to include extras or it's a mail art envie swap, here are some of the things I enjoy receiving:
Postage stamps (I can always use uncancelled US stamps, while used US or foreign stamps get recycled into my collages.
Faux postage (artistamps)
Old black & white photos
Air mail Stickers/labels
Match box labels.
Fortune cookie fortunes
patterned tissue paper
I love bizarre, quirky rubber stamps.(Had a great collection in the 1980's but they melted in the tropics!)
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