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JANE DeSANTI

Paper Artist/Designer

I have always loved paper in many forms.  When I was 3 years old, I took a trip to my Aunts for tape, to repair a paper doll.  It was about a mile, and at 4 a.m. I only saw the milkman.  Needless to say, that didn’t happen again.   Before cellphones and when long-distance calling was very expensive, people wrote letters.  My Aunt Lillian lived all over the world and would send letters.  The paper was usually embossed with her initials, and heavy, unlike the paper in a big chief tablet where I practiced my penmanship.  Even at an early age, I could discern the difference.

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There used to be stores for just stationary.  Rows and rows of wonderful heavy textured and colored paper.  A heavy cardstock was a sign of affluence.  When meeting people in the business world, exchanging business cards was necessary and the card was the first and sometimes the only impression.  In my working career, I loved that I was able to create marketing materials.  Most of the important words in my life were received on cards.  Cards of celebration when big things in life happened.  Alternatively, cards of comfort when the worst of life happened.  Cards kept in boxes, read, and re-read.  I once fell in love through text messages, when the computer died, I lost that history.  That doesn’t happen with paper.

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It was natural when looking for a hobby that involved paper.  I have been giving cards I create as presents to family and friends.  A set of cards is a lovely present and it encourages people to connect with others.  I have participated in many card drives for the armed forces.  My favorite organizations send cards overseas to soldiers in remote locations and make them available for the soldiers to send back to their loved ones.  Sometimes those cards are the last communication and that really drove the spark to make each card unique.

I had a plan for my retirement, paddleboarding in the summer and card making and craft shows in the winter.  Retirement just happened sooner than expected.  My first craft show was in 2018 at St. Anthony’s and it was there that a customer encouraged me to approach Sterling Creatives. 

I select the materials based on color and texture.  Is card making art?  I believe it is because I create a visual expression.  More importantly, I create the substrate where the sender creates a missive that evokes emotion in the recipient.  The question becomes, am I the artist, or is the writer the artist?  Either way, I appreciate that when my art is chosen, my art appears in the greatest of galleries: a refrigerator door in someone’s home.

I belong to Just A Card campaign.  The campaign aims to encourage people to buy from Designer/Makers and Independent Galleries and Shops by reinforcing the message that all purchases, however small, even 'just a card' are so vital to the prosperity and survival of small businesses. 

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