Article Type Making Art Together Making Art Together Categories Collage Drawing

In My Travels: Handmade Postcards

Diana MacKenzie

It’s kind of a crazy idea that small square stamps in the corner of postcards or envelopes is the only ticket needed for your pictures and words to travel distances near or far. Mail is so much fun that we decided to devote the current Every Day Art Project, In My Travels: Handmade Postcards to all things mailable.

Everyone starts with blank card backgrounds (we made sure they fit US Mail postcard size guidelines). These miniature pieces of art are just the right size for adding old stamps, magazine clippings, colorful construction papers, photocopied alphabet letters,

or drawing on with markers, colored pencils and pens.

The collection of funky-edge scissors around the room are popular for adding flared zig-zags and scallops to the edges of the papers (we like Fiskars Brand Kids Craft Paper Edgers).

Why has The Art Studio suddenly gone postal? All because of the current art exhibition on view in our East Gallery, Simms Taback:Art by Design.  It features many beautiful works by Simms, including original art from Postcards From Camp, about a father and son writing funny letters back and forth to each other all summer long while the boy is (at first) unhappy at camp.  It’s a must read before starting any postal art project!

One of our current displays include fun facts about the history of The US Postal Service. Did you know you could mail children up until 1920, when it officially became illegal? I’m guessing those packages needed a little too much care in transit!

Many guests are buying stamps (conveniently available in The Carle Bookshop down the hall) and popping their creations in The Studio’s mailbox where we promise to safely get them on their way. If they mail them without postage we just display them instead.

 Here is just a small sampling of the many beautiful cards guests are mailing around the world from The Carle! Last names and full addresses have been blurred out in the pictures to protect privacy.

Another beautiful stack heading to the mail box.

I hope you to encourage the children in your life to discover the excitement of sending art on a journey through the mail!

Making Art with Children is generously sponsored by the Massachusetts Educational Financing Authority.


Diana, smiling wearing an orange scarf and brown shirt.

Diana MacKenzie

Public Art Program Educator from 2007-2016, Diana has a BFA in Printmaking from Syracuse University and creates mixed-media works inspired by her travels, combining her interests in printmaking and sculpture. She received her M.A.T. from Mount Holyoke College in June 2017, and continues teaching visual arts to children and adults.