Lisa Chin is a textile and quilting artist and I'm thrilled to host her work with hand-carved stamps here today. Here's Liss:
One summer at the state fair I discovered a cart selling pre-made stamps. After carefully looking over every inch of the merchandise, I finally purchased my first stamp: a set of lips. Fast forward many years, and the purchase of a lot of manufactured stamps, and I finally discovered stamp carving
The first successful stamps I created were made using copyright free silhouettes found online. Next I experimented with carving simple flowers and leaves I drew. With time I have been able to feel more confident with my carving and use my stamps in my surface design work. The inspiration for each stamp comes from many places, but most often from a need for an image I want to recreate over and over on fabric.
When I begin a stamp I trace the size of the stamp into my sketchbook, and if I don’t already have an image in mind I draw several ideas inside each shape until something strikes me. I purchased a large number of these oops erasers on clearance and found they carve nicely, but can be a little crumbly.* They are great for practicing on.
Another day I was determined to carve a dove with an olive branch in it’s mouth. I drew the image, transferred it to the rubber and started carving. I find it helpful to stamp the image as I carve if I am having a difficult time deciding what to leave in or out.
I created two stamps so that I could stamp the details over the silhouette. I wasn’t satisfied with either image at the time but looking at it now, I’m not sure what I was hating so much. Sometimes it’s best to step away for a few days and then when you come back you can say, “Wow! I made that? That is pretty cool!”
A week or so later I drew a new image, a little larger this time and added some words. I love this stamp and have been using it on the packages and letters I have been mailing.**
Thanks so much for sharing your process here, Lisa. One of the challenges I'd like to take on in February during my "Stamp Month" is the repeating pattern. Here is an example from Lisa:
I hadn't thought of using copyright images! So smart, Lisa. I can't wait to get carving.
*I'm not a fan of any of the pink carving material. It is very crumbly. There are white erasers that you can use or Speedball white carving material.
** Remember to reverse your image when transferring. There is info on it in this post.
Have a fabulous weekend everyone.