Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Out with the old, in with the new

I've finally gotten around to carving a new sig stamp - my third since starting with letterboxing last year. (Actually, I started boxing on July 20th last year, so I suppose today marks the end of my first year of letterboxing, tomorrow starts my second...)

First signature stamp 
My first stamp, which was a square with honeycomb in the background and a bee up front was carved on Speedy-cut (hiss! spit!), was literally my first carve and was horribly undercut due to my aforementioned carving education.  You can see it on the first page of my first log book on the right there.  The stamp itself was actually quite large - probably about 10-12 centimetres square. Obviously, that one didn't last very long at all... All the lines started literally falling off of the stamp (there was nothing underneath holding them to the block) and pretty soon it didn't look like anything.

Signature stamp 2
My next stamp, which I used mostly until today, was also made with Speedy-cut - yes, you'd think I'd learn, but it was all I had and all I could find!  I actually drew this one free hand (never again!) and knife carved it, no undercutting this time so from that perspective it was a stable image.  It has not kept well and because I used black ink once, I had to keep with black ink (because the material is terrible - if I had washed it properly to get the ink off, it would have completely disappeared as it crumbles so bad).  I've actually used this one for longer than I expected, but every time I would stamp with it I'd kick myself, wanting to have carved something better already.

Micro signature stamp
I started using, almost exclusively in recent months, my micro stamp (gouge carved on pink stuff - phew) which is simply of a bumblebee...  This little cutie is just the size of a thumbprint and was actually intended for a letterbox, but I liked it so much that I kept it.  Nevertheless, it was never intended to be the signature stamp that I used and I wanted something a little more elaborate.

Finally, after much deliberation, I finally chose and image and got carving.  Not sure the image is all that clear in the end, but I like it anyway.  The new stamp, along with my pretty new Kaleidacolor from Stampeaz and I am all set.  It's about 4-5 cm across and 10-12 down and I mostly gouge-carved it, the exception being some small spots and the lettering.  I think I like it, I'll have to test it out in the field...