Winged World has been a longtime favorite of mine. Vickie creates little pieces of art by painting on old library catalog cards. I couldn't be happier to hear Vickie share how she started painting on these cards and which are her favorite.
Please introduce yourself and your shop.
Hello! My name is Vickie and I love to rescue obsolete library card catalog cards. I then paint on them to create miniature pieces of art so they can be enjoyed into the future. I sell my original painted cards plus library card art prints in my WingedWorld Etsy shop at https://www.etsy.com/shop/WingedWorld.
Have you always painted on non-traditional surfaces such as old library catalog cards? What inspired you to begin painting on the catalog cards?
Before I started painting on library cards, I did drawing and painting on traditional surfaces like paper and canvas. I was feeling stuck in a rut, so I started using the cards as prompts for painting exercises. I like to look at the book title and subject on the card and use that to suggest imagery that I could paint on the card. When I offered painted cards in my Etsy shop, sales took off like wildfire. I've sold them to customers in almost every state in America as well as Canada, Australia and Europe. People have so much nostalgia for library card catalogs and library cards.
Your shop has such variety in the subjects you paint, ranging from midcentury furniture to woodland animals to nature scenes. How do you decide what to paint?
I now have at least 1,000 unpainted cards in my collection, so I enjoy sifting through them and imagining what I could paint. I love classic children's literature cards, and they naturally suggest subject matter to me, such as characters from the books. On others, like the midcentury modern design card, I research the subject and find so many options that it can be hard to narrow it down. But I have to work within certain parameters, and that helps. The imagery needs to work on a small scale and it has to have a shape that doesn't cover up important words on the cards, like book titles and author names. There's so much freedom and creativity in painting the cards, but I also let them guide me.
Do you have any favorite paintings?
Like a lot of artists, usually my most recent paintings are my favorites. But special cards will always have a place in my heart, like ones for “The Little Prince” and “Charlotte's Web.” I also like a card about the boxer Joe Frazier with vintage boxing gloves on it, a card about Vincent van Gogh with a portrait of the famous artist and a card about the Seminoles with an obsidian arrowhead painted on it.
Where do you see your art and business in the next few years? Any new materials you'd like to try out? Any goals or wishes for your shop?
I have my Etsy Internet shop and I'm in two brick-and-mortar home decor shops. My goals are to expand into more retail locations, such as book stores and library gift shops. It would be wonderful if my art could be used in gift shops to help libraries earn money to fund their operations. I've already used the cards in a fundraiser for the library where I live, which felt wonderful since the librarians there were so kind and let me have hundreds of their obsolete cards.
Cute, right? If you want to check out Vickie's collection of cards and pick out your favorite, be sure to visit her Etsy shop!