Love Notes begins tomorrow!
Love Notes is a postcard project coordinated by Jennifer Belthoff that “encourages slowing down, getting back to basics, and connecting through handwritten notes sent through the mail.” Participants sign up for the swap on Jennifer’s website and then she assigns partners–notified via email–who correspond with each other for three weeks based on a prompt she provides each Sunday. The swap is hosted a few times during the year. Although the swap has been going on for some time, I only recently heard about it through Christine B., a penfriend I met through Liberate Your Art 2016.
Postcard writers can respond to the prompt in any way they choose–sentence, paragraph, poem or list.
Angie, my partner for the July swap, lives in Tampa, Florida. She sent three postcards that had an element of “handmade.” The first one was the front of a greeting card, too cute to toss, and perfect for her message in response to the prompt, “Begin each day with…:” Begin each day with hugs, flowers, and friends.
Hugs, Flowers, and New Friends
Angie’s week two card, art deco fashion, was also appropriately chosen for her response to the prompt, “Yesterday…Today…Tomorrow…” She wrote: “Don’t ever lose your sense of style! Be brave…Be strong…Be bold…Always!”
Felt hat and purse with triangular decorations, 1928
Angie had fun experiementing with her new watercolors. This postcard is from Pepin Press.
And lastly, in response to the prompt, “In my next 30 years…,” Angie wrote, “You get to choose what you spread.”
Spread Kindness by Angie C., Tampa, Florida
Although most participants share their own art and photography, Love Notes may be handmade or storebought. In fact, participants can send note cards or letters instead of postcards. The idea is to send a handwritten smile to be found among all the bills and junk that clutter our mailboxes.
Through the Love Notes Facebook group I connected with other participants and exchanged additional postcards.
Joanne from Ottawa (Canada) sent:
“With Love from Ottawa,” Photo by Joanne.
She penned a Henry David Thoreau quote on the back: “To affect he quality of the day that is the highest of arts.”
Christine B., who regularly shares her photo postcards with Love Notes participants, sent two cards, one featuring purple hydrangeas. She sent this one “in solidarity” after yet another police shooting of an unarmed African American.
“Hydrangeas” by Christine B.
After receiving a photo postcard from me of a tree with birds’ nests, Christine sent a card featuring a snow-embellished tree she shot last winter. She sent her card with well wishes for the academic year and a quote: “Courage is fear that said its prayers.”
“Winter,” Photo by Christine B. of Flagstaff, Arizona.
Lorelei C., a paper artist from Pennsylvania, kindly sent two handmade postcards with lyrics from songs–the catchy Bobby McFerrin “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” and John Lennon’s “Imagine.” [Click an image for a closer look]
“Don’t Worry, Be Happy”
“You’re Singing the Song”
Finally, Deb, an artist from Virginia Beach, Virginia shared her lovely postcard made with ink, a “Make Art” stamp, washi tape, paint, and glitter pen.
“Make Art,” by Deb D.
Make art. An elegant “mandate” that we craft and create. No objections from me! I love how Deb accented the postcard with a dash of color and some of my favorite washi tape.
I’ve been looking forward to Love Notes since the July swap ended. If you haven’t noticed, I participate in a lot of mail swaps, but what I appreciate about Love Notes is the opportunity to make a real connection with individuals. Besides, I’m more than ready to give all the “thinking” and “doing” of the last two months a momentary rest and send more pretty out into the world. Partners have been assigned. Now, we just wait for the prompt.
If you want to see more Love Notes, check out the Facebook group or search the #lovenotesjb hashtag on Instagram. Be sure to check back. I’ll blog postcards as they come in!