In a world where friend requests have replaced awkward first impressions, pokes have replaced flirtatious winks and Twitter has replaced the right to personal musing, it is easy, if not inevitable that we will soon retreat from the real world altogether to co-exist in a virtual cyberspace where one never has to interact with another human being again.
That was then. Recently there has been a backlash among the cultured youth who are craving something real. Many of my friends have taken to not accepting pin requests, commiting "Facebook suicide“ and actually picking up a phone to (gasp) talk. But none of these well-meaning actions can compare to the ultimate representation of nostalgic, traditional correspondence—the written card.
Cards have always represented something more than a piece of paper. Whether it is an invitation, a thank you note or the ever-elusive love letter, that small piece cardboard, however slight, represents the thought and time taken to write to someone you care about.
Cue Downtown STATionary. Created by Emmett Shine (artist/photographer and co-founder of LOLA New York), this whimsical line of greeting cards were spawned from Shine‘s everyday sketches. Why greeting cards? "I like greeting cards because they are a two part joke or story - an opening and a closing. It is fun to do the most basic storyline in a way that is a bit off-setting, or seemingly non-linear.“
Each card displays one of Shine’s drawings with a tongue in cheek message inside. For the flippant fashionista? A pair of Wayfarers with the message "Ur so cool.“ For the aspiring rocker? A guitar and an amp. There’s even one for the perennial hipster, complete with a fedora and skinny jeans. Printed on recycled paper, these quirky cards are the ideal alternative to Hallmark’s pre-packaged gush. But to Shine the message is simple, like his cards. “My ideas come from walking around, friend's conversations, childhood inspirations, and sometimes just doodling."
Just because the name proclaims a downtown vibe does not mean this stationary is just for those living below 14th Street: "It‘s making fun of high-brow and low-brow at the same time in a way that both brow levels can appreciate, with winks at the same time.“
Final Word: Downtown STATionary is available exclusively at TheBlackBuoy.com and The Smile, NYC.