Monday, 21 April 2014

Stamps & Postcards Research

As I am planning to design and print postage stamps and postcards as part of the pack i wanted to look into some existing designs and find the regular dimensions for these. 

With the stamps I also wanted to make sure it was okay to create unique postage stamps, but as I found so many I think it is fine to propose this for the sake of this brief, although I think I would need to seek some kind of permission for these to be usable. 

Stamps

I firstly looked to find out the standard size of a postage stamp and found that this is usually 21mm x 24mm. Although some are different from this, I plan to stick with the standard dimensions for my pack.




The above stamps have been letter-pressed giving them a highly tactile finish and high quality. I would love to get the chance to letterpress but in the time I have left I don't think this will be possible. The numbers make them look more realistic and the colour schemes are simple with one colour per stamp, although there are different tones.





These again stick with the one colour per stamp and also feature numbers. These stamps are not English but I presume this is some relevance to the class or price of the stamp. There are however different tones of each colour in the stamps which adds some depth and interest and ensures the design is clear. These differ from the standard dimensions of stamps, perhaps this is something I could think about. 







These again have a simple colour scheme but these do feature black in addition to one feature colour and white. I think due to the small scale of stamps it is best to keep the designs simple. The curved patterned edges seem to occur a lot, but I am not quite sure if I would be able to achieve this with a craft knife, it would be very fiddly. 





These are the kind of stamps I first thought about when I thought of producing my own stamps. They feature the standard 1st class and queens head, but in a sillhouette rather than  image, over a photographic image. These are collectible and are interesting and unique in shape as the shape of the characters influence this. 


Postcards

I found a source that stated the dimensions of a standard postcard, so I will use these for my product. 


The ISO 216 standard has defined postcard size to be 105mm × 148mm, which is also the same size as A6 and hence a quarter the size of an A4.

Source






These have been screen printed and feature neon colours that make them aesthetically desirable and attractive. I love the colour combination of the deep blue with the bright orange. I also really like the way the back of the postcards have a more interesting design, rather than the typical blank space, however I do need my cards to have space for the audience to write messages!













Below is an explanatory piece of text referring to this product, I have included this as it is very relevant to the reason behind why I am including postcards as it talks about the personal idea behind a hand written message.

'As far back as we can remember we have both saved every handwritten card we have ever received. What is it about these objects that we attach so much meaning to? When a card is received it is meant to only be used for a short amount of time on that particular occasion. What is interesting is how these objects have remained in our possession for the past fifteen years. These notes were not necessarily intended to be saved, yet as time goes on they become even more meaningful. Whether it is a card from a deceased loved one or a friend that you are no longer in contact with, being able to look back on that handwritten thought is a simple reminder of former communication. With the recent rise in digital communication our passion for print has become more significant. The ease of communicating digitally has removed personal connections, leaving the recipient  feeling less important. Opposite of this is something such as a handwritten letter. The effort put into personalizing this object makes for a more imitate and memorable experience. We believe it is important to encourage communication of life’s everyday events that seem to have gotten lost along the way. We feel that this is somewhat of a generational gap and that it is time for us to inspire our generation to communicate in ways beyond the digital.'

I am not sure such a detailed pattern would be very suitable for my practical element but I like how this is consistently applied to the different elements within this pack. The postcards within the pack are perforated allowing the audience to tear off and send, I could possibly do this with about 4 postcards, making a concertina but perforating the folds. 








This is another interesting project including postcards, although this incorporates the digital world as well. 

'I started a project where I send unique postcards to strangers. Each card is numbered and has a QR code linking it to the website meaghandee.tumblr.com that exhibits every card. I’ve now sent over 200 cards out. After each set of a hundred, I produce a book documenting each card. '

The design is very hand rendered which I do feel is appropriate to the theme of postcards, as they are obviously designed to be written on by hand. I also like the idea of including messages on the printed side of the cards, this could be a good way to communicate. 


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