Snail Mail Game Show | Uncustomary

I want to start this post with apologizing for why it took so long between Rounds 18 and 19. You see, when I first made the prompt this summer, it was about cats. This was before Bug died. And I knew I had this pile of beautiful art that was cat related, and I was dreading opening it because I knew it was going to bring up feelings of grief for me. That’s not fair to you, and I apologize for my unprofessionalism and tardiness. I want to thank you for your support, kindness, and generosity as I got through Bug’s passing. And even more so for the way you supported my dad by sending him so many beautiful cards and pieces of art. He asked me to thank all of you, and this feels like a good moment to do it.

I never really shared the wall of cards he made. This picture was taken early on in receiving cards, and so many more came in. He opened them at his own speed and kept some with him, in his office, etc. You all really went all out. And I got many, too. Thank you all so much for your support.

Snail Mail Game Show | Round 19 | Uncustomary

So last night I finally sat down to open up your envelopes. And I cried a lot. It definitely made me miss Bug, but it was layered. It was just so much celebration of cats and animals and creativity and fun in general! Everyone did such an amazing job of imagining the prompt in their own way, and I treasure these more than anything else because of where I’m at right now. You sent personal letters, even before you knew Bug was going to be leaving us. Sitting here, reading handwritten cursive takes me back to my bedroom seven years ago when I first had Bug in my life and was so into mail art and he would inspect every letter and lie with me as I wrote to dozens of penpals every night. It lit me up inside, and I thank you for that.

Anyway, you might be wondering what the actual prompt was for this round, so I’ll get to it! Everyone received a piece of paper with a cat and the base of a cat tree on it and the instructions read, “Cats are independent, affectionate on their own terms, great companions, feisty, and incredibly unique. An interesting thing about cats is their affinity for being in high places, hence our creation of the cat tree. If you were a cat, what would your ideal cat tree look like? How high would it be, what would it contain, how would it branch off, what worlds could you explore by climbing up it?” So let’s see what you made…

Snail Mail Game Show Round 19 | Uncustomary

Artist: April

This top one looks so much like Bug its unbelievable! Their name appears to be “Marshmallow”. I adored the cat faces hanging down from the fish. They were a bit hard to scan, and I’m covering up the name of the bottom kitty named “Luna”. So much love.

Snail Mail Game Show Round 19 | Uncustomary

Artist: Marguerite Bryant

How fun is this? It’s like a colorful cat city (full of purrfect puns!) I think any cat would love to live here and then also be like, “yeah I deserve this”. Marg also sent me a letter talking about her old cat Otis who was 18 pounds and his paws almost reached her shoulders when he would hug her. She misses him.

Snail Mail Game Show Round 19 | Uncustomary

Artist: Cara/Chewy Tulip

Cara sent a message from her cat Taco, that says, “The perfect cat tree consists of all your human’s face pieces that they won’t let you step on”. She also wrote a note that said she thought cat-ear-shaped tents would be cozy and so would the inside of a mouth (IF it were lined in red velvet, of course). All of the eyeballs would be concave enough to take a nap in, too, obviously.

Snail Mail Game Show Round 19 | Uncustomary

Artist: Kathleen

These cats are so adorable, and I love the purple hues. The tassle on the left is real fabric and fun to touch! This looks like a very serene place for lounging inside of a faerie TAIL. I also love the music notes. Bug had pretty bad taste in music. He likes Kanye and Slipknot and Limp Bizkit. I don’t know why. He did like Kesha, though.

Snail Mail Game Show Round 19 | Uncustomary

Artist: Darcie

I love the way Darcie repeated the same cat and thought of the main and important things a cat likes to do. It’s that simple, baby. The cat with the fishing pole is straight up hilarious.

Snail Mail Game Show Round 19 | Uncustomary

Artist: Jenn

Oh man, a rainbow rubs tunnel? Now you’re talkin my language! Look at all these places they can hang out! A rooftop terrace with a VIP lounge? (I hate to break it to you, but all cats are VIP. Hahahah.) I adore the disco ball and Spy Scope. So creative.

Every round, you babes do such a great job, but this one really meant something to me! The official winner for Round 19 is Marg with the colorful cat city tree! Something about this one really spoke to me. But because they are all so damn good and special, I’m going to be sending everyone a little something. But Marg will get a special surprise package from me!

There are already people signed up for Round 20! This is the last Snail Mail Game Show for 2019 and the decade! You want in? Get a chance to express yourself creatively, share your art publicly, and possibly win a prize! Check out the official Snail Mail Game Show page where you can learn about the rules and sign up! And yes, you can sign up for multiple rounds at once, if you feel like paying for a few months all at once! Whatever works for you.

Snail Mail Game Show Round 6 | Uncustomary Art

Sign up goes from now till November 15th at 9 pm EST. If you sign up after that, your name will be added to the list for Round 21. Challenges will be mailed out around November 22nd, and submissions will need to reach me by February 7th, 2020.

Questions for the comments:
1) Which piece from Round 19 is your favorite?
2) What does your inner cat look like? What would you put on an ideal cat tree?