Monday, March 4, 2013

Envelope Art

There was a time when sending handwritten letters through the mail was the norm. And I still remember (yes, I grew up in an 'email-free' generation) the excitement of waiting for the mailman to arrive and hoping to receive a letter with my name on the envelope! 

And as much as I love receiving a good old-fashioned handwritten letter, nothing beats a letter wrapped in a well-dressed envelope! I was always one who preferred to send my letters in envelopes with a bit of embellishment. Sometimes it would be stickers or maybe drawings and other times gluing something I cut out of a magazine! Using the front and/or back of the envelope as a canvas for art is a way to add a personal and unique touch to the overall letter with more than just words. 

Below are some wonderful examples of various envelope art. It's amazing what amount of detail and love can be made on such a little piece of paper.

Freehand drawing of Bird & Flowers with acrylic ink.


American artist Clayton Lewis sent almost 1,000 beautiful little paintings on the outside of ordinary envelopes to mostly his mother over a span of 5 years. His envelope paintings are absolutely amazing!


Children's Book Publisher Klaus Flügge and his collection of illustrated envelopes from various children's book artists. The envelope art pictured above is by Axel Scheffler, a star in the world of children's books. He has created the artwork for many beloved characters including Julia Donaldson's Gruffalo.


American illustrator and graphic artist Peter Max's drawing on an envelope. I love how his drawing is so simple and modern. 


Girl with a Flashlight...brilliantly fun!


Mail Art is Traveling Love from Mirta Toledo's blog. I love the mermaid drawing just gorgeous!



Joe Linton's envelope artwork to his mom, circa 2005. For this particular piece, he used India ink, watercolor, and stamps on a paper envelope. Linton was inspired by the art of Ben Shahn and a bit of Amedeo Modigliani.


 Beautiful envelope art from Lord Marmalade.


Kim White's fun drawings on an envelope using postage stamps.


Envelope art from Superdilettante titled "Marion Davies dreams of James Stewart".


Below are some of my envelope art sent to Carlos during our college years apart (1992 - 1996). He went to Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, MD for college while I stayed in California and attended the University of California, Irvine. We both wrote tons of love letters to each other and many of my letters were sent in envelopes covered with my freehand drawings of fictional women - my favorite drawing subject. Of course he saved all my letters as did I with his letters. Our collection of letters is one of our most treasured possessions.


"Woman who looks better with tattoos on her face" (8" x 10" manila envelope)

"Green Lady" (l) and "Blue Eyeshadow" (r)

"Painted Woman"

"Which catches your eye more - her hair or her breasts?" (l) and "Ruby Girl" (r)

"The Valentine Woman"

"Woman with Duck Earring" (l) and "Woman with Blue Diamond Tattoo" (r) 


The next time you decide to take the time to sit down and hand write a letter to anyone special in your life, try sending it in a personalized envelope made specially for them. Whoever receives it will not only love it to bits but it will be something for that person to cherish and hold on to their whole life.


So get off that computer, grab a pen and paper, get creative, and reacquaint your hand to the old art form of handwriting! Cheers to old school!

17 comments:

  1. I adore this post and am in love with every single piece of art.

    Ruby Girl is adorable.

    I'm also still fond of the 'snail mail' era.

    Thank you for sharing - this is perfect : )

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    1. Thank you! I'm glad you enjoyed the envelope art! And good for you still rocking the snail mail! xo

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  2. A super idea! It's been a long time since I sent or received a personal letter!

    I found you via the blog hop. So happy to have popped by *waves hello* from a new follower, Hazel x

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    1. Thanks for stopping by...will definitely stop by to say hi at your blog! xo

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  3. I remember those days...our envelope "art" included inexpensive stickers but every piece of mail was special. Thanks for sharing this amazing collection of art!
    Jayne
    Handmade Cuties

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  4. Hi from Mingle Monday! And yes, I completely agree. Envelopes with artwork are the best!

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    1. Hi back! Thanks so much for stopping by :)

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  5. i dont know how long its been since Ive written a handwritten letter. Aside from kids party invitations. i am guilty of this.

    xx,
    klee

    kisskissbyklee.blogspot.com

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    1. I am guilty too! It's been a good amount of years since I last wrote one!!! I'm going to try to get back into the letter writing sometime this year...I'll aim for at least 3 handwritten letters per year!!! xo

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  6. Like your post. I remember your envelope drawings. Handwritten letters - such an ancient thing now, but I too liked getting them "back in the days."

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    1. Glad you liked it! Kind of sad handwritten letters are sort of ancient but nice to know people still do it!

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  7. Wow!! Those are really awesome mate. I like it. Been thinking of doing the same thing on some old lever arch files here in my office. Brilliant!

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    1. Thanks! And thank you for stopping by! Lever arch files...sounds cool!

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  8. i love your women jess! They deserve to be in the gallery!

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    1. Oh Noel! You are my biggest fan! And how cool would it be to have your art in gallery?!? You have some amazing artwork yourself! Miss ya xxoo

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  9. Woah! What creativity! My envelopes are so boring in comparison! Thanks for stopping by my blog and your sweet comment! Happy Thursday!

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