Besides watching History Channel & being in & out of a funk, I've been writing to pen pals a lot lately. I've always been a fan of handwritten letters. Nicholas & I used to write all the time, living several states away from each other. We both have boxes of embarrassing 15 year old ideas of the world, many written in pink gel pen (ok, that parts not embarrassing). But then we got busy, and I was lucky if I had time to reply to emails or Facebook messages. But now that I live states away from everyone else, I requested a few pen pals. Some are friends, some are family. But I love getting mail. And I hope my pen pals do, too.
See these feathers? Cut with an Xacto by hand and glued into place. Voila, homemade stationary! Obviously I have a thing for feathers, as they appear on dreamcatchers, in merit badges, and throughout my sketchbooks. And my sister McKenna? She likes birds. In fact, as I found out after mailing these, my family just got a cockatoo! It's a rescue bird that needed a new home. Her name? Maggie Lovely Lynch. Yep. In my family, there's Michaela (hey there), McKenna (age high school know-it-all), Mia (teenager in a kindergartener's body), and now Maggie. We keep it confusing.
I wrote her letter on the back of these feathers before sealing them off in the envelope. I think next time I'll stick with the white pen. At least on the darker kraft paper.
Mia's my other pen pal. So I wrote her this note, and collaged a picture of the ocean and a mermaid on the flip side. She called & thanked me for the "lovely picture of the sea." Now I can't wait for my mail from her!
My friend Amber (who is an AMAZING illustrator and the funniest, charming-est girl you'll ever meet) makes mail art. Just about always. And it's so beautiful. She has a whole Tumblr dedicated to her mail! And a couple weeks ago, I received the most beautiful surprise from her. An 8-track case, collaged with a gold doily and 4 lovely stamps, was left glistening at my doorstep. That's right. Glistening. And when I picked it up, I could hear something inside. I wish everyone could have seen my face when I shouted "IS THAT GLITTER?!!" And indeed. It was. Because as soon as I could, I opened it to find a tiny letter (I love tiny letters), and a cut-out image of a bunny and a couple of chicks NESTLED IN THE GLITTER. Obviously there's still gold glitter all over my desk, making its way into various projects. I don't mind.
So I wanted to send something to Amber. And since she loves mail, and I love tiny letters--and therefore tiny envelopes--I made her this garland, with what has pretty much become my motto. (I'm pretty much known for telling people to make beautiful things or lovely things or marvelous, instead of saying "Ok, see ya later" or "Peace out homies" or "K, bye.") Anyway, I made her this garland of little envelopes that on the other side reads "Make Lovely Things." Oh, and since I'm a fan of recycling, I used the letters I cut out and made the card you saw at the top of this post. Eco-friendly art.