Below are a few of my recent ACEOs "in hand" so that you can get a sense of the size of these little (2.5" x 3.5") works of art.
In 2004 the unique little art form known as ACEO (Art Cards Editions and Originals) was born on eBay. ATC (Art Trading Cards) have been around for centuries and are usually traded or exchanged rather than sold. In contrast, artists primarily create ACEOs with the intention of selling them. ACEOs came to be as a result of the public's interest in acquiring and collecting these tiny works of art that were (up until the ACEO) stricly traded between artists. Today ACEOs are flourishing, (on any given day at least 100,000 ACEO originals are sold somewhere on the internet) More and more people are collecting ACEOs and art supply stores are beginning to stock specialized materials that help artists create them. Two of the greatest appeals for the ACEO are that they small enough to fit inside standard card-collector pockets, sleeves or sheets, and they are an affordable way for people to acquire original art.
I personally discovered ACEOs on eBay in 2005 and began creating the little works of art that same year. My versions of this small format began to sell immediately on eBay and I found myself inspired to create more. Over the years I've been able to perfect some interesting techniques and mediums for my little ACEOs. Below is one step by step of my ACEO "Houdini".
One of my ACEOs step by step:
This is the third portrait of little "Houdini". This special mouse has a sweet story that you can read here.
After I had created and sold over 500 of these little paintings, I began to think of other ways to use the images. The result was eight unique virtual "shops" where I sell prints of the small paintings as well as hundreds of art gifts such as magnets, bookmarks, greeting cards, tiles and jewelry boxes!
Although I now paint in a larger format and illustrate children's books, I still occasionally create ACEOs (here is my most recent original ACEO) as a way to revitalize my creative inspiration. The creative process of painting ACEOs "Miniature Masterpiece", is still such a joy! I have to include this piece written by my friend Carol Rosinski because her words beautifully express my feelings about creating these tiny works of art.
The Secret of Miniature Art
The secret about miniature art is the intense sense of intimacy that is experienced when you hold a piece in your hand. When a piece of art is so small that it can rest in the palm of your hand, you are being gently invited to bring it a little closer to your eyes. You bow your head a bit and bring your hand nearer to your face. This is a very intimate pose. At this moment, you have let the piece of art enter into a vulnerable personal area. You would never hold anything dangerous this close to your face. This is the way you would hold a butterfly or a small kitten; very gently and close. Miniature art is a gift, a treasure, a secret and special friend.