The Obsession That Wouldn’t Let A Stamp Die

So ok, I admit it, I sometimes have a hard time letting things go.

Tonight I discovered a series of cracks in my prized hand-carved jewelry stamp.

Hey, I’m allowed a bias toward my own work! {: And this stamp…I think it’s wonderful. I especially love the way the jewelry blanks look before I decorate them. As much as I love color, and as much as I love ADDING color, I think there’s something so zen and beautiful about a sea of jewelry blanks just waiting to be adorned. I love the chalky white color, I love the deep indentations in the thick clay…I love the possibilities.

Blank jewelry bits

This stamp has made a big impression — get it? {:

I’m really not surprised to find it falling apart. The stamp was pretty much crap when I carved it. The carving medium I used was crumbly and difficult to work with, and only later did I find out that it must have been old or had an inferior formula. I’ve since used a newer medium — same brand and everything! — that carved a lot better.

In spite of its flaws, I keep coming back to this one stamp. As such, discovering that this stamp is on its last legs makes me sad. But I don’t feel like its job is complete. So, instead of thanking it for its service and letting it go to Precious Art Supply Heaven, I made a mold of it, to preserve it and hopefully get a bit more use out of the design.

Mold of my stamp

I also mounted it by gluing it onto these two wood slats I had hanging around the studio, because I’m just that obsessive. :p

Hand-carved stamp mounted on wood

As soon as the snow lets up…or the Christmas shopping hordes…or both, I’m going to buy more clay so I can make a mold of the mold so the mold can be, you know, useful. {:

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