I have been a mail artist for quite a few years. I am sadly leaving IOUMA. There is a certain style of art I usually see here, and a style that I usually receive. It is a mid century-collage based cut and paste look, which I admire and enjoy, but is NOT what I do. I just got a comment that said my art was not hand-made, because I started with a print of a watercolor. This is not a photocopy, and even if it were, who is someone (across the globe, I might add, for which I spent $3 on postage to get my work there) to tell me they are sad and disappointed in what I did? I feel like people here impose their rules on others, that if you don't cut and paste in a collagey style, then you are not congratulated enough, or let into the club. This is exactly the OPPOSITE of what free expression and the love of sharing should be. I have worked for 20 years to develop my own personal style as an artist, I am proud that it is different from what the club does.
Long live free expression.
Long live personal style.
Long live sharing art with no expectation of return or personal gain.
I now participate in Free Art Friday -- I leave works of art in public for anyone to find and enjoy.
I love mail art and will miss this place, but criticism about what I do is ridiculous when my art is given freely.
Best of luck to all.