We were doing process posts and I thought I'd show you how I decide on a pattern for a symmetrical stamped piece of work. The previous ones were somewhat asymmetrical.
Firstly, there are a lot of places to get stamps now days. My first ones came from either Rio Grande Jewelers Supply (which was very limited 20 years ago), and Indian Jewelers Supply. You could get letter stamps from Harbor Freight or some very tiny ones from Otto Frei. After that, Beaducation jumped on board and you got all of the fonts you could ever want and lots of designs that up until that time were unavailable. Lately though it's been back to my roots - I had started with a variety of Native American Stamps. Today, it's handmade stamps from House of Stamps. They are strictly Navajo handmade stamps and they ROCK!
Now, it's not to say there aren't other stamp makers. ImpressArt makes some great stamps but I've never used them. There are other handmade stamp makers but there is nothing like a stamp made by someone with generational experience. You can just type in "stamps for metal" in Google and check it out. So, if I've missed your favorite stamp store, I apologize. But I'm only going to talk about what I know and I've been using metal stamps for a long long time and have a very extensive collection from all kinds of companies.
So lets talk about my favorites. Those are from Lyndon Tsosie and the family at House of Stamps. Lyndon is an Navajo artist. His work is "to die for" exquisite. So, not only do Lyndon and his family run a business to sell original and handmade Navajo stamps by the "makers" Lyndon disseminates major amounts of tutorial information on the stamp facebook page. If you have not joined yet - do so!! House of Stamps (this is the Facebook page). I can't tell you what a relief it is not to have someone forcing at me a pay for it tutorial so I can understand how best to use their product. And it's the aim of Lyndon to see to it that our questions are answered and that we can use those stamps to the best of our ability. He, and his family, are the best cheerleaders for original stamp working I have ever met. And, on top of that they are great people. What a joy to work with them. I have never been disappointed in my stamps or in the way they conduct business.
Go and join their Facebook page. They "kind of " BIN out the stamps on both their Facebook page and their Web site. See for yourself. You'll meet lots of great people, get good tips, and maybe even purchase a stamp or two. Tell them I sent you. I don't get anything out of asking you to mention me. You know how I am about passing along good info and these people and their operation are good people. I just want them know I'm shouting them out.
Now, on that process to decide on what I'm going to stamp - and how....
These are a fist full of the stamps I've been accumulating. When I get a stamp I stamp it in my drawing tablet for a quick reference since my studio is downstairs. I keep my HOS stamps in the boxes you see in the pictures. All of my stamps have boxes or containers. It's just plain easier to find them.
Here you see what I do. I pick a stone (that came from HOS too) - draw around it. I give myself a little room for a bezel, move the stone, and start stamping. Trials are to the left. You can see the line of stampings I did. When I find something I think is perfect I begin. I didn't like the star pattern I added last (too visually light for what was going on). But there it was, in permanent ink! When I feel like I've got it down why do it over. I just stamped various "other" possibilities on an index card and cut them out. One by one I moved them over the star until I decided which option to use.
After the holiday is over maybe I can get this stamped out. I still need a stump. I used to have a good one but left it back in Michigan. That wasn't the best plan. We are hoping today to cut one from a tree the neighbor cut down.
Have a great Labor Day and I hope you enjoyed the links!