Thursday, December 31, 2009

January 2010 Mailing

A quick note to let you know that we're getting things ready for the January 2010 mailing and hope to have your addresses off to you soon, but there is a possibility that they might be a bit late getting out as we're in the middle of family holiday plans right now. Thanks for your understanding — rest assured we're doing what we can to get these out to you ASAP!

(lovely photo by Susana via beauty in everything)

Friday, December 25, 2009

Happy Holidays!

Wishing you and yours a very merry Christmas season — hope you find lots of good things in the mail as well as under the tree (and in your stocking)!


(vintage photo from the George Eastman collection on flickr, via creative inspiration)

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Postcards to Ornaments

Aren't these amazing? They're wooden postcards that become ornaments, and are so pretty that they'd be lovely to receive at any time of year, let alone Christmas. Designed by Anne Paso of Finland, they're available in black stain, white stain and natural and in bird, pig, ball, and egg shapes. Via Apartment Therapy LA.

Thanks so much to BPS member Jesse Lu for the link — one of the sweetest people I've never met! :-)

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Why Wear Anything Else?

Interested in helping out a fellow BPS member? Samantha in Istanbul, Turkey is a finalist in a design competition and needs your votes! Last year she designed a shoe for Fluevog that was eventually made into a real shoe named the Zaza (after her). This time around, she's in the running for a competition to design the ad for the Zaza. The winner is determined by the number of votes their design receives, so Samantha needs as many votes as she can get to win. Help her win by voting for her beautifully illustrated ad, called Why Wear Anything Else?, here. You can vote once a day until December 22.

Good luck Samantha!!!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

A Little Recognition

I'm stunned but happy to announce that my automatism blog has made The Times list of 50 of the world's best design blogs! I'm in some amazing company, too — have a look here.

Monday, December 14, 2009

RCA Secret 2009

RCA Secret is an annual exhibition and sale of original postcard-sized art at the Royal College of Art in London, made by professional artists, designers and illustrators plus the Royal College of Art’s current postgraduate students. This year’s exhibition contained 2,000 pieces donated by over 800 artists — have a look at the postcards here. Shown here is a postcard by Jane Gifford. Inspiring and wonderfully diverse, too.

Note: some of these images are NSFW and/or not suitable for the kiddies.

Thanks so much to BPS member Clare for forwarding the link!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Looking Ahead

One of the interesting discoveries that I've made about the BPS project is that, besides being about generosity, it's also about commitment — being able to make time to find or create a postcard and mail it off at a certain date. Not everyone is able to do this, for various reasons — and sometimes it's only when you're involved that you realize it's not for you. We've had a few people drop out of the BPS so far — one due to a serious illness (we're sending our good wishes for a speedy recovery to Edward in Tennessee), many due to moves and needing time to deal with the upheavals a move brings. It's life, and, while I'm sorry to see people go, is understandable.

Lately, though, I've found myself doing a lot of follow up emails for members who are waiting on postcards that were mailed in October and November. And though many were simply mailed late (such as those delayed due to the database issues in November) or went missing in the mail, I fear that some were just forgotten about altogether. With this in mind, please let me know if you feel you can no longer commit yourself to the monthly BPS mailings. I'm totally fine with that — after all, it's supposed to be fun and not a chore! — and you will still be a cherished member whether you contribute to two months or to all twelve. I also have a growing waiting list of people who'd love to become a member, so if you can't continue don't worry — there's someone who's ready and willing to become one in your place!

I hope this doesn't sound too grumpy, but it's disheartening to hear about the lack of postcards for so many members. Here's hoping that we can get this sorted out so that the lack of postcards is minimized. In the meantime, I continue to be amazed at the generosity, creativity and big hearted spirit of the BPS members. You are all so wonderful and it's truly a privilege to know you.


(photo via perfect bound on flickr)

BPS Café — December 2009

If you've received a December postcard from a sender who prefers to remain tantalizingly mysterious, you can still say thank you! Members can leave a comment here to let other members know how much they appreciate the postcard they've received.

Note: If you've just received your November postcard and would like to thank the sender, you can still leave a comment in the November BPS Café post! For earlier postcards that have finally arrived, please check out the quick links to the appropriate BPS Café in the Related Links section on the right.

(photograph via nom nom nom)

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Mailing Day

It's mailing day today! Have fun. And if you haven't received your December mailing address yet, please check your spam folder. If it's not there, let me know right away so I can re-send it to you!

(photo from snap & tumble, via we heart it)

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Postage-Themed Linen

How cute is this linen fabric with a vintage postage print? Sadly it's no longer available, but I did notice other postage-themed items on the same site! Have a look at Stefanie Style on Etsy for more goodness.

Thanks so much to BPS member Karyn for forwarding this to me!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

December Mailing

The December mailing addresses were sent out last night, a little early to give everyone time to do something a bit special for this holiday month. If you haven't received your address by Monday, November 30 (not forgetting to check your spam folder first!), please let me know right away.

P.S. Because of the problems we had with the November mailing, some of the postcards for that month will be late arriving to their destinations — mostly because a few members didn't get their addresses for mailing until mid-month. Please note — because we are unable to track which addresses were received by you and which weren't, it's really important that you let us know as soon as possible if you didn't get your address! Just remember that we always mail out the addresses a couple of days or so before the first of the month, so if it's not there by the first, then do follow up.

Thanks as always and happy mailing!

(photograph by ole:) on flickr, via we heart it)

Sunday, November 22, 2009

It's Oh So Quiet ...

If you've been wondering where I've been lately, I've been having major computer issues on and off over the last three weeks, which has meant that I've been unable to either post here or check and respond to your emails on a regular basis. The end result is that my old computer finally quit for good and I now have a lovely new iMac (so happy!) and am back in business again. It does mean that I'll be a while catching up on things, though, but rest assured that I'm reading each and every email I receive, even if I'm a little slow getting back to you.

Hope you're all well — and the best to you in the week ahead, too.


Wednesday, November 11, 2009

What's New

I've finally had the time (and the working computer) to upload new photos to the BPS Flickr pool! Have a look to see what's new here.

Incidentally, if you've emailed me within the last week or so and I haven't yet responded, email me again. I'm still catching up from the computer meltdown last week, and it's quite possible your email has disappeared into the gi-normous backlog of messages that I'm still working through!

Thanks again all. One more thing — a moment of silence for Remembrance Day today, too.

(lovely photo by lobster and swan on flickr)

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Checking In

Thanks to everyone again for your patience while we've been figuring out what the problem was for the November address mailing — it seems to have been a Gmail issue as far as we can tell. Again, check your spam folder first if you still haven't received your address — if it's not there, let me know (ASAP)!

I'm also still catching up on things after my computer crash last week, so I'll be a little longer getting your lovely photos for the BPS Flickr pool uploaded, too. Soon!

Thanks all!

(photo via the world is mid-luscious and puddle-wonderful)

Thursday, November 5, 2009

BPS Café — November 2009

If you've received a November postcard from a sender who prefers to remain tantalizingly mysterious, you can still say thank you! Members can leave a comment here to let other members know how much they appreciate the postcard they've received.

Note: If you've just received your October postcard and would like to thank the sender, you can still leave a comment in the October BPS Café post! For earlier postcards that have finally arrived, please check out the quick links to the appropriate BPS Café in the Related Links section on the right.

(photograph via nom nom nom)

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

November Mailing Update

I've received quite a few emails in the last couple of days about members not receiving their address for the November mailing. We're resending addresses as needed, but in the meantime be sure to check your spam folder in your mail first, as a lot of them seem to have ended up in there! Thanks again, all!

One other thing -- my computer is in the shop at the moment, so I may be slow responding to you over the next couple of days. Thanks for your patience!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

November 2009 Mailing

As the first of November falls on a Sunday, the November mailing addresses will be going out later today, with tomorrow (Nov. 2) as the official mail out day. Just wanted to let you know so you don't worry!

Hope you're having a great weekend — and thanks again!

(photograph via weheartit)

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Cut Paper Envelopes

These are just amazing — intricately cut paper security envelopes by New York-based artist J.K. Keller. Via dear ada. Thanks so much to BPS member Jesse Lu for sending along the link!

Monday, October 26, 2009

What's New

We're in the process of preparing for the next mailing on November 1, which I'm finding hard to believe — this month has just flown by! Just a couple of things I'd like to remind you about — please use an envelope if mailing anything fragile, and please mail it on the 1st (or as close to it as possible), too.

Having said that, I'd like to mention again that (as a few of us are discovering) the length of time it takes for something to be delivered is completely unpredictable — a friend of mine here in Canada was delighted to get a postcard from Turkey in 4 days, while another friend's postcard from Texas (again to Canada) took over 4 weeks. This is why I'm taking the long view with this project, hoping to receive as many as I send, but resigned to the fact that the unpredicability of the world's postal systems means that there may be months when a postcard arrives very, very late (or sadly not at all).

Thanks again for being understanding about this — I wish I had a way to make sure everyone got a postcard each month and on time, but unfortunately it's just not possible. In the meantime, let's stay positive and remember that this project is all about the giving!

(The pretty photograph is by the wonderful Bonnie Tsang, via lovely Linda of Simply Seductive. Thanks so much again, Linda!)

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Postcard Pillow

Such a fun idea — a postcard pillow! It's hand made by Fallon of Olive on Etsy, and she customizes it for each buyer, hand writing your personal message on it, too (plus an address and two stitched on stamps). There's one left in stock, so if you're interested, hurry over to her shop here!

Thanks so much to BPS member Melanie for sharing the link!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Getting There

I've had a few emails now from BPS members reporting sadly on the state of the postcards they've received — one arrived with just a few colourful bits of glue remaining on the front of what should have been a lovely collage, and another had the entire front torn off entirely. So, I'd just like to remind everyone again — if you're sending a collaged postcard (or adding anything to an existing one, or if it's delicate in any way) please protect your wonderful work from the vicissitudes of the world's postal services by putting it in an envelope before sending it.

I must say that this project is turning into a real learning experience about mail systems!

(photograph via that.was.just.a.dream)

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

BPS Café — October 2009

If you've received an October postcard from a sender who prefers to remain tantalizingly mysterious, you can still say thank you! Members can leave a comment here and let other members know how much they appreciate the postcard they've received.

Note: If you've just received your September postcard and would like to thank the sender, you can still leave a comment in the September BPS Café post!

(photograph via nom nom nom)

Monday, October 12, 2009

Postcard Delivered After 40 Years

"A postcard bringing holiday news to a couple in Almondbury has just been delivered — 40 years after it was posted." Read the rest of the story here. Needless to say I sincerely hope none of us wait this long for our postcards! Thanks so much to BPS member Andree for forwarding me the link — and check out Andree's globetrotting adventures here, too!

(peacock postcard by mulberry muse on Etsy, via Creative Inspiration)

Saturday, October 10, 2009

September Follow Up

If you still haven't received your September postcard yet, please let me know now. We'll be keeping track of potential problems with postcard deliveries as we progress through the BPS project, and right now it's September's turn. Thanks so much for your help!

P.S. If you email me a note saying that you didn't receive a September postcard, and then find it in your mailbox later, please let me know ASAP so we can keep the database current! :-)

(lovely photo by Lobster & Swan, via the happy girl I am)

Monday, October 5, 2009

A New BPS Button

My pal Clare — a brilliant designer and a BPS member — designed these cool BPS badges just for fun on his lunch break the other day, and I just had to share them with you. I'll post downloadable versions that you can add to your own blog/website soon, too!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Mail Day!

Happy mailing day! Thanks so much again to Greg for staying up til the wee hours of the morning to make sure we all got our addresses in time, too.

(lovely photograph by Morning by Foley, via we heart it)

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Wednesday Update

As I write this, my wonderful brother Greg is valiantly tackling persistent email issues that prevent him from sending out this month's BPS addresses. Rest assured he's doing all he can to get the problem sorted out quickly so he can send the address emails out tonight.

Just wanted to let you know!

Update 1:18 AM: Greg's got it working and you should be receiving your October mailing address in the course of the next couple of hours or so. Yay Greg! Thanks again for your patience while this was getting sorted out.

(The still of the Knight playing chess with Death is from the brilliant 1957 film The Seventh Seal by Ingmar Bergman. Via Criterion)

Another Project ...

Thought you might be interested to know that I've just launched my own online shop! It's called the automatism atelier, and it's where I'll be selling my limited edition fine art prints, one of a kind mixed media collage work and more. To celebrate I'm having a giveaway on my automatism blog, where you'll have a chance to win one of four different letterpress prints in my Veggie collage series! The prints measure 4" x 6" which is, as you know, postcard sized. Shown above is Mr. Onions — but be sure to go and meet Miss Cabbage, Sir Potato, and Lady Asparagus, too! Contest closes at midnight on Wednesday, October 7 2009.

Monday, September 28, 2009

Monday Update

I'm battling an icky flu bug at the moment, so my apologies if I'm slow responding to your emails for the next day or so. Rest assured that we're still on track for sending out the October mailing addresses to everyone by Wednesday night!

I've also received a few emails from BPS members concerned about not yet receiving their postcards. There are several factors responsible for this:

1. Location. Depending on the distance your postcard has to travel for the September mailing (and some have quite a ways to go), your postcard may still be in transit. In this situation, it's quite possible that your October postcard will arrive before your September one!

2. Postal Strike. There are at least two postal strikes that I know of on at the moment, which will definitely slow things down, if not bring things to a complete halt for a time.

3. Members. For various reasons (out of town, urgent family business) some members weren't able to send their postcards out until a week or two after the mail date. Life happens and will continue to do so!

I wish I had control over the mail system, but alas — it's as unpredictable as the weather. I myself am taking the long term view, hoping to receive most of my postcards but not expecting to get one absolutely every month. That said, I've received postcards from family and friends on holiday months after they've returned home, so you never know!

Thanks so much as always for your wonderful support and for your patience — I really appreciate it.

(beautiful photograph by smallfish on flickr, via we heart it)

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Getting Ready

The October mailing is coming up soon! Before we gear up again, I'd like to go over a few things with you. Read on for more ...

1. We're putting the finishing touches on our shiny new app that will randomly select and email addresses for the monthly mailings (huge thanks again to my amazing bro Greg for designing and building this)! We'll be testing it this week.

2. Some members are still waiting for their September postcards. If you're one of them, please bear in mind that many are being mailed from quite a distance, and give the postcards until this Friday (September 25) to arrive in your mailbox. If you haven't received yours by then, let me know and I'll follow up as best as I can. Which brings me to:

3. I cannot stress strongly enough how important it is to mail out your postcards on the first of the month. As some of you are discovering, mailing to another country can take weeks, since the postcards are being sent by regular mail, for great distances, through several postal systems. Please don't disappoint another member (and I've been getting some very forlorn emails indeed about this lately) and make them wait any longer than necessary. The whole point of this project, after all, is to make someone happy! If something serious comes up and you can't make it to the mailbox on time that's fine — life happens. Just let me know so I can let the recipient know there'll be a delay. Which brings me to:

4. A membership amnesty. If you've recently realized that you'll be unable to commit to the monthly mailing schedule required for the BPS, please let me know right away. Whether you're on the road a lot traveling or just trying to deal with your own hectic schedule — no matter what the reason, rest assured that no one will get mad or be disappointed if you decide to gracefully bow out. It is a commitment to participate in this, and being able to both recognize that and be honest about your ability to adhere to it is really appreciated. You'll still be welcome to hang out here!

5. The next mailing is just over a week away ...

Please feel free to comment on the above (or to email me privately if you prefer), and thanks so much again to each and every one of you for making this such a great project — it's so fun to watch it grow!


(lovely Polaroid photo by Marta V. on Flickr, via carrots and peas)

Friday, September 18, 2009

BPS Café — September 2009

If you've received a postcard from a sender who prefers to remain tantalizingly mysterious, you can still say thank you! Each month I'll have a post here called the BPS Café, where members can leave a comment and let another member know how much they appreciate the postcard they've received.

(photograph via nom nom nom)

Get Connected

If you look at the right hand column, just under the Followers section, you'll see a new link list for the blogs and websites of BPS members! If you'd like to be included, just email me your site name and address (with the words BPS Link in the header) and I'll add you ASAP.

(photograph by natamatika on flickr, via you carry my love inside of your heartbeat)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

What's New

Just wanted to let you know that I've updated the BPS Flickr set for September — and if you'd like to contribute, email me your photo of the postcard you've received (just the front with the picture — the rest will go into the book later)! Have fun with it, too — take the movie Amelie as inspiration and photograph your postcard in its new home!

P.S. Want to read something awesome? Check out BPS member Katie's lovely true story about A Most Important Postcard here!

(photograph from the Twins Garden Style blog, via we heart it)

Monday, September 14, 2009

BPS on Flickr

I've been hearing from a few of you that the first postcards are starting to arrive now! And though many postcards are still steadily making the journey to their (distant) destinations, I thought I'd remind you today of the brand new BPS Flickr group, where we'll be sharing photos of the ones we've received (see my post The Well Traveled Postcard). If you'd like to share a snapshot of a postcard in its new home — and this is completely optional — email me your photo!

P.S. Just uploaded the first one — thanks, Teri!

P.P.S. Please note that the photos on the Flickr site are of just the front of the postcard — photos of both the front and back will appear in the book at the end of the project (so you'll have even more to look forward to later!)

(Photograph from wolke sieben, via weheartit)

Friday, September 11, 2009

The BPS Button

There's now a member button for the Benevolent Postcard Society! Shown above is an enlarged version so you can see the details — to place it on your own blog or website, simply drag the blog-sized version from the "BPS Button" section in the right hand column onto your desktop. Don't forget to link back here, too! Thanks so much to Katie (KLBK) for her great suggestion!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Where's My Postcard?

I've been getting email that BPS members are beginning to receive their postcards! If you haven't found yours in the mail yet, please be patient for at least another week or so — some postcards have to cross entire continents and/or oceans to get to their destination, and that destination may very well be you! But if nothing has arrived by September 25, do feel free to email me — I'll be happy to look into it for you.

(photograph from moodboard, via Linda of Simply Seductive. Thanks, Linda!)

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Vintage Typewriter Ribbon Tins

Aren't these vintage typewriter ribbon tins beautiful? And they must be so fun to collect, too! You can see more of Janine Vangool’s extensive collection on Flickr.

(via Lovely Package)

Monday, September 7, 2009

Still Waiting?

Just a reminder that all addresses for our first BPS mailing in September were sent to members via email by late afternoon on Monday August 31. If you never did receive an address to mail off your postcard to, please email me as soon as you can at Thanks!

(the lovely photo is by the wonderful Jody Rogac. Via art star)

Friday, September 4, 2009

The Well Traveled Postcard

Have you seen the wonderful film Amélie? Of course you have. Remember how Amélie's dad kept getting baffling photos of his missing garden gnome from all over the world? Well, one of the fun things we're going to do here is start a Flickr group which will feature snapshots of the postcards in their new surroundings — so a postcard from (for example) Canada will be photographed against its new Swiss background. More on this later this month, when we start receiving our postcards ...


P.S. BPS member Alex blogged yesterday about the postcard she just sent on her lovely Make, Do and Send blog — you can see her inspired September postcard here. Thanks so much for sharing, Alex — such a great idea!

(movie still from amélie via mnsrrt on flickr)

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Readymade or Handmade Postcards?

I've recently had a few people ask me rather worriedly if it's okay for them to send store bought postcards rather than making their own — so I'll just say here and now that of course it is! I'm definitely looking forward to seeing the lovely handmade ones, but what members choose to send is just as interesting — and makes the final mix of postcards that much more varied and wonderful. So relax, enjoy the project and — most importantly — have fun!

(photograph via we heart it)

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Mailing Day!

It's mailing day today! Have fun sending off your postcard — and waiting in happy expectation of one in your own mailbox soon, too!

(pretty photograph by the ghost factory on flickr, via we heart it)

Monday, August 31, 2009

September Mailing

Just so you know — the database is taking a little longer to build than expected, so our September address mailing to members is being done manually by me. I've sent out addresses to half of our 257 members as of yesterday, and will have the rest done by this evening. Thanks for your patience — needless to say it's a bit slow doing it this way!


Update: I've just finished sending off the last name on the list — whew! If you haven't yet received your address for mailing your postcard, please let me know. Thanks!

(lovely photograph by the wonderful Alexandra Grablewski, via we heart it)

Thursday, August 27, 2009

What's New

A quick update on the progress of the first BPS mailing! Right now we're busily putting together an app that will take care of managing the 250+ member addresses and emails, so that the random member selection and the emailed notification process each month can be an automated and smoothly running process. The addresses for our first mailing on September 1 are scheduled to go out this weekend — but if there's a hitch I'll post a note here to let you all know what's going on.

Thanks so much to my fab brother Greg for his hard work on this, and thanks to you all for your patience — rest assured that I'm as eager as you are to get started, too!


(lovely photograph by letteria on flickr, via weheartit)

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

World's Smallest Postal Service

The World's Smallest Postal Service (WSPS) is a teeny tiny transcription service and roaming post office based in the San Francisco Bay Area and also available online. Lea Redmond is the Postmaster, setting up her tiny mobile office in cafes and shops where passers-by can write a letter and have it turned into a "world's smallest letter." The letter is transcribed on a miniature desk in the tiniest of script, sealed with a miniscule wax seal with the sender's initial pressed into it, packaged up with a magnifying glass in a glassine envelope, and finished off with a large wax seal. (from the official site)

I would have adored this as a child — and I'm still finding this seriously cute now.

(Via puglyfeet on English Muse)

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Chocolate-Scented Postage Stamps

Last month France's postal service La Poste released a limited edition chocolate-themed — and chocolate-scented! — set of ten postage stamps to celebrate the 400th anniversary of chocolate's arrival in France in 1609. Getting mail with these would not only be fun, but delicious. From Serious Eats, via A Cup of Jo.

Monday, August 24, 2009

What We Do

One of the fascinating things about putting together the database for the Benevolent Postcard Society has been seeing not only how diverse we are in terms of where we live, but what we do, too. I thought it might be interesting for other members to have a sense of what we each do to make a living, too — feel free to share in the comments below. And me? I'm a collage illustrator.

(inspiring work space via my archive of Domino Deco Files)

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Who We Are

Wondering where other members of the BPS are from? I'm still compiling the database (and adding a few latecomers), but here's a quick list of the countries our 250-odd members call home:

New Zealand
Northern Ireland
South Africa
The Netherlands
United States

(lovely photograph by lobster and swan, via weheartit)

Friday, August 21, 2009

For Members Only

I've just about finished setting up the database for the Benevolent Postcard Society, but before I do I have a special bonus for BPS members! If you have a friend who hoped to join but missed the deadline, today's a special day — all they have to do is send an email (to me directly at with the heading "BPS" and their address by midnight tonight (Friday August 21, EST) and they're in! I'm only announcing this on the blog, so consider this my little thanks to you for being so supportive of the new home of the BPS.


Update: Thanks so much and a big hello to the new members! The database is now closed and we're busy getting ready for the first mailing on September 1. More on that soon ...

(beautiful postcard from Geninne's Art Blog, via weheartit)

Wednesday, August 19, 2009


Welcome to the official blog of The Benevolent Postcard Society — thanks so much for being a part of the project! This is the place for members to find out what's new, post comments, ask questions and share info. And now — here's the detailed info (in a question and answer format) on the project as promised! Leave a comment if you have any questions and I'll respond as soon as I can (or someone else might be able to help you out, too).

Q. How exactly does this work?

A. Send a happy postcard. Get a happy postcard. That's pretty much it. Each month you'll send a postcard to a different person — and each month a different person will send a postcard to you. At the end of the year, you'll have 12 postcards from 12 different people.

Q. How do I get a mailing address to send my postcard to each month?

A. Towards the end of each month for the next 12 months, I'll email you the randomly selected address of the person you'll be sending your next postcard to for the coming month. For example, towards the very end of this month (August) I'll email you an address for the September 1 mailing.

Q. When do I send my postcard?

A. The postcards should go out on the first of each month, starting September 1 2009. If for some reason you can't make it to the mailbox until the next day, that's fine — just remember that some postcards have quite a distance to travel, and the sooner they go the faster someone else will get your amazing postcard!

Q. Should I write something on the back of the postcard besides the address?

A. Sure! But keep it short and sweet, and of course positive. The point is to bring a smile to the face of whoever is lucky enough to find your postcard in their mailbox. So, it could be a simple "Hello!" or "Have a great day!" or a friendly short poem or haiku, or a cheerful quote that you'd like to share. Add your name and you're done! If you're still uncertain about what to write, you can even do a little drawing or a smiley face, which would be nice to get, too! The one thing I would ask you to bear in mind is that we are a diverse group from all over the world, so there should be nothing overtly religious or political in your message. But you know that already.

Q. When will I get my own postcard that month?

A. It depends on where your postcard is traveling from! Our members are scattered all over the world, so if you're in, say, Canada and your postcard is traveling from Estonia, you may need to give it an extra week or so. If you don't receive anything by the end of the month, though, let me know and I'll look into it. Sadly the mail system isn't perfect, so there may be the occasional postcard that goes astray. If that should happen (and I certainly hope it won't), I'll make it up to you and ensure that a replacement is sent.

Q: Any dos and don'ts about the actual postcards?

A. If you're making your own postcards (or are embellishing found ones) and are gluing things on — such as adding collaged photos, wax seals, or even sparkles — I highly recommend sending it in an envelope. The automated sorters that the post office uses are really good at tearing off anything like this, as they're designed to process plain flat envelopes and not anything with interesting contours.

Also, be sure to check with the post office if you're sending a postcard that isn't the usual size or weight — either of which will mean you'll need to add extra postage. It would be so disappointing to have a postcard returned to you just because you're a few cents short!

The subject matter of the postcards is entirely up to you. I know some people are doing beautiful handmade postcards, others plan on sending antique postcards, some are busy collecting postcards from museums and art galleries, while others have gathered together quirky or amusing postcards that they've found at flea markets and souvenir shops. Again, bear in mind that it shouldn't be something that could easily be taken the wrong way (i.e. something rather risqué) unless you know well the person you're mailing it to. I don't want to act as a censor, so again use your own excellent judgment.

Q. What happens after we've sent and received our postcards for one year?

A. The original plan was to have a gallery show locally of the postcards after the project wraps up in September 2010, which is still something I plan to do for those members who live here in town. But because this has become such a large and diverse group (thank you all!) I'll also be doing a book that will feature all the postcards that were sent and received throughout the 12 months of the project. To that end, I'll ask that you hang on to all the postcards you receive, as I'll need you to mail them all to me once we're done for inclusion in the book. You will of course be both credited in the book AND will have your postcards returned to you once I've photographed them for publication. Please note that all personal info such as mailing addresses on the postcards will be electronically removed by me from the final photographs to preserve the privacy of our members.

I hope that's been helpful — leave a comment if you'd like a little more detail on anything, and thanks so much again!