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Archive for the ‘it’s in the mail’ Category

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epic cloudscape, downtown detroit

I’m back from vacationing through the “Land of Endless Clouds”: Michigan! Many thanks to RLD readers who sent bon voyage postcards to my mailbox — YAY! What a wonderful thing to arrive home to – postal pals in my mailbox! You guys are the BEST!

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“Still Life: A Letter Rack” (1692) artist: Edward Collyer; seen at: the Detroit Institute of Arts

I had big plans to do a write up about visiting the Heirloom Productions rubber stamp show in Novi, MI on August 1st. Revv’d up and ready to see some awesome, I ventured thru the doors of the convention center and was dazzled by the array of paper, vendors, color, and stamps. (It was the first time I’d ever been to a convention like that…)

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searching for Capelli at John King Books…

However: I was thwarted in my plans.

Each time I queried a vendor about snapping a booth/product photo (all the while explaining that I was interested in doing a write up for my blog) I was politely told that the vendor didn’t allow photos. After going through this scenario a couple different times, I decided “meh.” I mean, what use is a blog post about delicious rubber stamps if there are no photos of delicious rubber stamps?!?!

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elevator existentialism…

So. That was a bit disappointing.

But: I did discover a gem of a stamper, tucked amongst all the decorative papers and mixed media mayhem! Chuck Knock of Grey Wolf Graphics has a fantastic selection of faux postage rubber stamps, perfect for all your mail art envelopes, postcards, and artistamp work.

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a sampling of faux postage imagery from Grey Wolf Graphics

Chuck illustrates all of the rubber stamps produced by Grey Wolf Graphics; the GWG website states that he was involved in “illustrating many of General Motors’ owner’s manuals as well as most of the ones for American Motors.” You would never mistake a Gray Wolf rubber stamp for any other, due to the beautiful line work and illustrative quality of Chuck’s imagery — one of the very reasons why I was immediately smitten with ALL of their rubber stamps!

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the Grey Wolf “thanks” stamp in action; awesome “mail call” stationery from JU13!

Needless to say, I left a fair amount of my “allowance” at the Grey Wolf booth. Each rubber stamp is beautifully mounted on a hand-turned wooden block; the deep etch red rubber takes ink wonderfully and leaves a fantastic impression. These rubber stamps are a welcome addition to any rubberhead’s collection! (unmounted stamps are also available.)

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rubber stamp haul from Grey Wolf; some mounted, some unmounted…

Hey — look how that happened! Even though I said I wasn’t really going to do a write up of the rubber stamp show, it looks like I still managed to do a write up of the rubber stamp show. I’ll leave you guys with a fun YouTube video from Diane Dimich of DD Stamps: a fast and easy painter’s tape technique which can be used on all of those “final month of summer” postcards.

Stay tuned: next week I’ve got fun announcements on the way, as well as a roster of new classes and going-ons!

Keep it postal!

–JH

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1960s+PARKWAY+MOTEL+Jackson+Hole+WYOMING+Vintage+Postcard

postage stamps? –> CHECK.

postcard blanks? –> CHECK.

knowledge of possible post offices en route? –> ABSOLUTELY.

I’ll be back next week with a brand new write up; until then, get out there and SEND SOMETHING!

–JH

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You guys know how it is: sometimes, a girl just needs a vacation! Not anything serious or long term, just a bit of a “run around barefoot on the front lawn in the grass” kind of vacation. The weather here in SF practically begs a person to sit in some glorious shadow-and-sun filled spot, in order to read books and consume adult beverages.

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What am I trying to say? Well, I’ll be taking a small break next week! Nothing new in the way of write ups, although I will certainly be re-charging those batteries of mine in order to bring future articles of wit and wisdom to you guys!

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I have some fun surprises lined up for the next few weeks, but for now I’ll hang a “Gone Fishin’” sign on the door. And who knows? Postcards from vacation-paradise might just be in order!

(Miss Rose: that video is ESPECIALLY for you!) 😉

Hope your summer has been filled (so far) with exotic POs and colorful postage –

–JH

 

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feet with heart

Sure, sure: today’s Friday the 13th. But have you seen this morning’s blog post over at uspsstamps.com?! Featuring the work of mail artists Sally Wurlitzer, Stan Askew, Niko Courtelis/Philatelic Atrocities (and yours truly), there’s a slew of delicious eye-candy, postally speaking.

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photo via uspsstamps.com

Each artist was invited to create work inspired by 2015’s new USPS Forever Love stamps, the post office, and Valentine’s Day. In addition, we were asked to discuss our working process and reasons why we “love the Love” so much.

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Thank you so much to the USPS Stamps blog for inviting me to participate in this article as well as highlighting contemporary correspondence artists! While USPS employees “move the mail” every day, designers behind the scenes give correspondence artists additional tools (i.e. beautiful postage) to work with. A beautifully designed postage stamp is icing on the (cup)cake, so to speak: a thoughtful detail which completes a single work of (mail) art.

–JH

PS: interested in reading about why I make the things I make, and mail the things I mail? uspsstamps.com interviewed me last year about what it means to be a contemporary postal modern. Take a look here.

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February: already?!?! I can’t believe it. And yet, I look at my calendar and the proof is right there in black and white: today is February 4th.

This month heralds many things to the postally-minded: construction paper hearts  of bright pink, the debut of the USPS’s annual Chinese new year postage, a smattering of red glitter and glue stick. The days are (slowly) growing longer, which means a few additional minutes to dash over to the P.O.

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The end-of-year holiday bustle is over (whew!), so that also means there’s a bit more “breathing room” when it comes to doing things just-for-fun. To that end, I discovered something I’m excited to share with you, RLD mail art creators!

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First: some background info. Located in Berkeley, CA, Castle In The Air is a heaven on earth for folks who can’t get enough of the following things: the smell of fountain pen ink, the feel of finely milled paper, and the sound of hand bound journal pages softly whispering through the air. A world unto itself, “The Castle” is a nook you never want to leave — a fairyland of shelves and drawers filled to the brim with pens, nibs, books, and things of beauty. (personal plug: they also carry Red Handed Rubber Stamps!)

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store photo via businessinsider.com

Castle In The Air loves correspondence and all things related to mail art, letter writing, penmanship, and beautiful missives. They believe in old school correspondence so much, they have a gem called the “Blue Castle Badge”, which I KNOW you are going to want.

But you have to earn it!

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How do you earn a BCBadge of your very own? Start off by heading over to the website, and perusing the guidelines for mailing

Some additional advice for readers of the RLD blog:

  • –address your letters/postcards to “Blue Castle Badge/Castle In The Air”, etc. etc. ; this will help the Castle sprites sort your missive into the correct place and stack.
  • –interested in creating a themed postcard or envelope? Show/tell Castle In The Air why you love letter writing, correspondence, mail art, fountain pens, calligraphy — anything related to the paper or book-ish arts!
  • –if you’d like, feel free to mention that you read about the Blue Castle Badge right here at the RLD blog.

In return, you’ll receive a lovely enamel pin to wear proudly on your label. Or, perhaps – if you’re like me – it will adorn your pencil case!

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Happy creating! Go forth and share your love of correspondence and let me know what you send off to The Castle!

–JH

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January 20th will be a thrilling day for Portland, Oregon folks who are fans of mail art, correspondence, letter writing, typewriters, old ledger paper — heck, anything that has to do with sending things thru the posts.

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Why’s that, you ask?

It’s the inaugural meeting of the Portland, Oregon Correspondence Co-op!

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Spearheaded by Niko Courtelis (a.k.a Philatelic Atrocities), this monthly event will take place at the IPRC. As you can see from the above photo, there will be some super-foxy passports for newly minted members to fill with rubber stampings, artistamps, and all manner of delicious postal ephemera.

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“Meet/Make/Mail” is the PDXCC’s motto; with a call-to-arms like that, how can you possibly be anywhere else on Tuesday night?

Details for January 20th’s meeting can be found here; if you’ll be in attendance, be sure to take plenty of snaps and send us a postcard! The membership of the SF Correspondence Co-op sends heartfelt wishes to the PDX Correspondence Co-op for a creative and inspired “first meeting”, as well as full mailboxes for all members!

Viva le Mail Art!

–JH

 

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GAC artistamp...

At last year’s G.A. Cavallini show at San Francisco’s Italian Cultural Institute, you may have noticed an eye catching artistamp displayed alongside an autographed photo (to E.F. Higgins!) of GAC. This artistamp was fascinating to me, with its rocket bright colors and red-hot typography. After posting a photo of the stamp on the RLD blog, creator Otto David Sherman got in touch and mentioned that it was one of his.

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Over the course of my mail art career, I’ve been the lucky recipient of many of Otto’s creations. It was a treat to meet the man-behind-the-artistamps when I was in NYC in 2011; Otto is just as bold, colorful, and creative as his stamp sheets.

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Every time one of his envelopes arrives at the RLD P.O. box, I know I’m in for a roller coaster ride of pop culture references, eye-popping color, and in-my-face politics.

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 I love it all.

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In Otto’s world, there are no sacred cows; first world leaders share equal time with dictators of banana belt countries. Cardinal Dolan sports stiletto heels and Vladimir Putin puts on a top hat. Another day in paradise, right?

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Even the inside of Otto’s envelopes are a sight to behold:

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Interested in seeing more? Visit Otto’s IUOMA page. His mail art and artistamp philosophy is discussed over on the Mail Artist Index page.

–JH

PS: if making your own artistamps is something that you’d like to learn, I’ll be teaching a class on creating faux postage at the SF Center for the Book on January 22nd. Take a look!

 

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