Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Snail Mail Exchanges

I've moved around a lot, and in all the different places I've lived, I've been lucky enough to befriend other adventurers. It's a bragging point for me that I have friends all over the US, even in various corners of the globe. I always have reasons to travels and folks to stay with.

The downside is that I cannot hang out in person with some of my favorite people as much as I'd like. But to fill in the gaps, I have some really cool snail mail exchanges going on right now.

For instance, zines.

What are zines? Small, underground, hand-made, subversive maga-zines. They may contain poetry, or comics, or cut-and-paste art, or some combination of these things, or some other art form that is new and transgressive.

Obviously, zine culture peaked before the Internet--it was all about Xerox machines and industrial staplers and getting your ideas on paper.

Now there are blogs, and Tublr, and Instagram, and so many ways to get high-quality images out to the public, without having to plug the copy machine at the public library with quarters.

And yet, zines still live in some places. Indie comic shops, basement art shows, and music events are some places you may find them. I was lucky enough to attend a Zine Fest or two when I lived in the Midwest! So even though zines are expensive to make and the technology may seem quaint and outdated, LONG LIVE ZINES!

I used to hunt down zines and other DIY art with one of my favorite people from Madison, WI. I recently picked up some comicbook zines, and as soon as I was done reading them I mailed them to her. I soon heard word that the day she received my zines, she had put together some in an envelope to mail to me!

Which proves once and for all: Great minds think mostly about DIY art.

I also have a creative friend who mails out postcards with poetry on them. Each card is a work of art--each poetry snippet matches the card in some way. Sometimes even the postage stamps fit in with a theme!

I try to mail her postcards back as often as I get them (weekly or monthly for the last year and a half), but lately I've been slacking... must go postcard shopping ASAP!

This is only a small sample of poetry postcards I've received. I love every one of them.

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