Start Here at IUOMA

A group with information for newcomers to the IUOMA. Some hints and tips written by VHM and BJ  to help you find your way at the IUOMA platform. For mentor of the Month we are always looking for volunteers.

New members are encouraged to join this group.

Location: Worldwide
Members: 116
Latest Activity: 12 hours ago


Welcome to IUOMA – the International Union of Mail Artists. You are now part of a world-wide artistic community that was created in 1998. Currently it has over 4000 members from around the world.

Newcomers to IUOMA sometimes find its scope and complexity a little intimidating to start with. It is not. It’s a friendly community of like-minded artists who are linked with each other and who participate in joint projects on an individual-to-individual basis or through IUOMA’s 125+ specialised Groups.

IOUMA is also a very democratic organisation. We are all equal, even though some of its members have been Mail Artists for 30 years or more, and you might have just joined 20 minutes ago. This doesn’t matter as you can establish links with as many or as few Mail Artists as you like, and participate in as many or as few projects that you choose. Don’t be shy, don’t be hesitant -- we are all Mail Artists together, and we all respect each other whether we are old or new hands at this Mail Art experience.

This 10-point Guide is intended to help you to find your way around IUOMA’s web-site and its members by setting out some simple things that you can do to now that you have become a member.

1. Start by looking at the Photos section of the web-site to get an idea of the type of Mail Art we are making and exchanging. Click on a photo to get an enlarged version of it.  If you like, you can send the Artist a Comment as to why you find a particular piece of mail art interesting.

2. You’ll also find the name of the Artist there. Click on that name and you will be taken to the Artist’s IUOMA Home Page, where you will find some Profile Information that usually sets out in some detail why the artist is involved in Mail Art and contact details (including web-sites). Also on the Artist’s Home Page you will find a complete set of Photos posted in IUOMA and (on the left hand side of the page) any Blog Posts and Discussions that he or she has initiated.

3. IUOMA is all about exchanging Mail Art. If you’d like to exchange Mail Art with an Artist you have identified then Send (him or her) A Message, introducing yourself briefly, and asking if you can become IUOMA Friends. You will soon get a Message back saying something like, ‘Yes, let’s be Friends. Let’s exchange Mail Art’. Take it from there, build up a network of Friends and keep a close eye on your physical Mail Box as Mail Art from all over the world will soon start arriving in it.

4. And when you receive Mail Art it’s customary – and courteous – to acknowledge it by updating the ‘What Mail-Art did you receive today?’ box that appears at the top of your Home Page, and/or write a short ‘Thank you’ to the sender.

5. What you now need to do is to post some of your own photos on your My Page. This way your friends and friends-to-be will get an idea about the type of Mail Art that you are interested in. Also, revise and up-date your Home Page from time to time, as it serves as a combination of CV and visiting card for you.

6. Now that you’ve started the process of making Friends what you should do next is look at the Groups section of the web-site and identify some Groups that interest you. There are 125+ Groups in existence, covering all sorts of weird and wonderful subjects such as Arti-stamps, Postal History, Visual Poetry, Tombstones and PO Box Owners. (There are also Groups for French, German, Dutch and Spanish speakers). Click on the title of a Group and you will see from the Discussion Forum list the type of subjects that are being considered by each Group. If you’d like to join a Group, the process is very simple – just click on the Join... icon on the Group’s Home Page. Then you’ll be able to follow and contribute to the work of the Group, join in Discussions, and – again, don’t be shy! – start new Discussions.

7. And that is basically the two main things that you need to do to get started in IUOMA – exchange Mail Art with your Friends and participate in the work of the Groups. It’s a very democratic organisation. But there’s a lot more going on in and through IUOMA.

8. For example, read and follow the daily Blog Posts that appear on the left of the IUOMA Main Page. Another example – look at some of the Links on the right side of the Main Page: these will introduce you to a wide variety of sites and sources. To pick just one of these, look at the MAIL-ART projects where international Mail Art projects and exhibitions are promoted. You are an International Mail Artist and these projects provide you with the opportunity to have your works displayed to international audiences.

9. These Links, and this short Guide, may not answer all the questions you have. There are two other sources that you can turn to. The first is the Ask Anything Group run by The Founding Father and Today’s Leader of IUOMA, Ruud Janssen. The Group’s description says, ‘There are lots of basic questions on Mail Art that are often asked and answered. This Group might be the first place to look for answers.’ Ruud has been a Mail Artist since 1980 and has unparalleled experience: ask him a question (however simple you might think it is) and he will unfailingly give you an answer.

10. The second source is your very own IUOMA Mentor who will help you in whatever way he or she can to ease you into the IUOMA community. There are 12 Mentors, and yours is dependent on the month you joined IUOMA (see below).* If you have any questions at all about IUOMA, then ask your Mentor.

Finally, and when you’ve become integrated into IUOMA, you might like to Welcome New Members as they join – they are the most recent names listed on the Members Page. They are new to IUOMA as you once were – help them into the IUOMA community.

Happy International Mail-Arting!


Ruud Janssen


Mentor(-s) of the Month (2019):


January = Mim Golub Scalin  / Cascadia Artpost

February = Bonniediva

March = Boo Cartledge / Mary Cartledgehayes

April = Mim Golub Scalin

May = Bonniediva

June = Bonniediva

July = Bifidus / vacation time / Cascadia Artpost

August = Mim Golub Scalin

September = Bonniediva

October = Bonniediva

November = Katerina Nikoltsou

December = Bonniediva


see also : for a database with questions and answers on mail-art and working here.

The mentorlist is for 2019 but may need some updates in names. If you want on or off the list, please send the moderator an e-mail ( IUOMA network is free for everybody. The hosting is paid with kind donations by members (see

Discussion Forum

What Do I Do With Add/Passes?

Started by Bonniediva Apr 23, 2019. 0 Replies

la mia mail art

Started by Bruno Cassaglia Feb 21, 2017. 0 Replies

DO's & DON'Ts

Started by Poison Label Productions. Last reply by Poison Label Productions Oct 12, 2011. 2 Replies

Comment Wall


You need to be a member of Start Here at IUOMA to add comments!

Comment by Carla Cryptic on October 16, 2011 at 5:32am
I'm so looking forward to the Day of the Dead again this year - will send you something I make for it when it's ready, Camel. :D
Comment by Poison Label Productions on October 2, 2011 at 6:33pm
Happy Haunting in Rocktober !!!!
Comment by Poison Label Productions on October 1, 2011 at 5:12pm

Thank you Carla -

I got some sexy girlies ready to go out to ya - sorry i am a little behind - but as you already know the girlies don't have little behinds!!!




Happy Haunting Newbies!!!


It's my favorite month - October!!!

It is time to break out your scary , silly , dark & wonderful things !!!

I welcome all you new people to IUOMA and I am excited to help you in anyway I can....


I am one of the strange ones here on IUOMA and some people find some things I make offensive - So don't be afraid to say you would prefer toned down art.


Most of all - always remember to feel free with your art & if it is offensive - disturbing - disgusting or sexy & you just don't know where to send it - well drop it in the mail to me!!!


I am available to you everyday & almost all hours.

you can contact me thru IUOMA - add me to your google chat - facebook - postcrossing - swap-bot - going postal - send something or even Google +


My contact stuff



Comment by Carla Cryptic on October 1, 2011 at 7:11am

As September comes to a close, I want to welcome Poison Label Productions (aka Camel) as the October mentor!  I've met some great people during September, sent out mail art to everyone new who listed an address (29 people) and answered a few questions - hopefully, I helped out a bit. If I was your mentor during September, don't forget that I will continue to be available to you via email or if you post on my page here at IUOMA - if you have questions, if you want to trade some mail art, or if you want some advice or just to chat about a project.


Signing off for now! 





Comment by Carla Cryptic on September 10, 2011 at 2:44am

And here are two links to mail art calls and projects:

IUOMA Mail-Art Projects List


MAIL-ART: The Forum


There are many many more!  Try googling Mail Art Calls.  :D





Comment by Carla Cryptic on September 1, 2011 at 6:41pm

Just wanted to say hello and welcome!  I'm the designated mentor for September. 


I'll be contacting new people directly but, if you read this and have a question or want to exchange some mail art with someone but don't know who to do it with, I'm waving my hand over here, ready and willing to help. :D


I hope you find IUOMA as wonderful a resource as I always have and, if not, let me see if I can help you to.  

Comment by Ruud Janssen on August 25, 2011 at 9:02am

In the forum:


Mail-Artists that want to can leave their address.


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