Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Hand Carved Stamp: Wine Bottle and Glass plus Cheese

We took a personalized stamp order from Madoka. She saw our stamp “Wine Bottle & Glass” on our Etsy store and wanted to personalize it by adding her and her husband name plus cheese (because they love wines and her husband likes cheese, she said). I had to re-position the wine bottle and glass to balance the whole design when names and cheese are added. Including cheese in the design worked pretty good to fill the empty space below the names.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Hand Carved Stamp: Goldfish in a Bowl

The inked impressions of hand carved stamps are generally 2-dementional. Giving 3-dementional appearance to the stamped images is a challenge for stamp carvers, but developing inking technique to add gradations to the ink is one of the solutions.

This is how I do it.
Preparing wet paper towel, crumpled small Kleenex ball and a peace of Kleenex.
Making a pad with the Kleenex ball and a peace of Kleenex.
Appling ink to the stamp. Wetting the pad and taking some ink off the stamp by tapping motions. This is how the image looks like. Cleaning the stamp with wet paper towel. I tried with lighter ink to show more transparency of the glass bowl, but the impression was too weak. So, I added darker ink to the top and bottom of the stamp. Added a goldfish in the bowl.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Hand Carved Stamp: Goldfish and Water Plant

We planed to make goldfish stamp last summer, but hadn’t come up with a design we liked. We drew several designs and found out that the design should be kept small and simple. Larger size design loses the cuteness of the goldfish and adding details makes it look ugly to us. We also knew that just simple design would look too simple. So, we wanted to add transparency of the fin to the design. But, how? The solution was actually quite simple. This is how we achieved the transparency effect of the fin of the goldfish.
Putting ink on the stamp and taking some ink off the fin by tapping it on a Kleenex. Pretty simple!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Mini Album: Mei

We are visiting our friends in St. Louis, Missouri tomorrow. I made this album as a gift for a friend whose house we are going to stay during this trip. Her daughter, Mei, is one of the reasons we visit St. Louis quite often lately; we went there twice last year. She is so adorable and funny that we never get bored of watching her. Whenever she started doing something, we grabbed a camera and kept taking photos. I had already made an album for myself using her photos and this is the second one. Here are some pages from the album. We are so excited to see her again. I wonder if I can sleep well tonight.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Ice Fishing

We visited a lake house, which is owned by parents of our good friends, last weekend and enjoyed ice fishing.Our friend, fishing Master Brian, took us to Lake Mille Lacs which was 15 minutes drive from the lake house and is about two hours drive up north from Twin Cities and one of the largest lakes in Minnesota. We drove on the lake and got to the fishing point, but not many people were ice fishing there.It seemed to be a little off season. When we visited this lake for ice fishing three years ago, we saw so many fishing houses that it was as if a city was build on the lake.
It was a beautiful and warm day, but was still about 30 degree though. We could see signs of fish on radar but the fish wasn’t very active that day.We tried different lake early next morning. Master Brian caught some but no luck for us. When we decided to leave, I found out my bait had already been taken. I kept fishing without bait! No wonder I didn’t catch any.

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Music Themed Personalized Stamp: As a Birthday Gift

Ooooooops. It’s been such a long time.
Friends complained. We know, we know. We will try.
I carved this stamp as a birthday gift for a friend.
Whole stamp carving process is mostly fun, but creating a new design is sometimes frustrating. As the friend is a very good piano player, the theme of the design came up pretty quick. I drew some designs on the paper to visualize what's in my head; the name surrounded by some notes. However, they didn’t look pretty at all. I kept drawing and drawing and when I almost gave up, I finally ended up with this design. I changed the font and the position of the note. This is how the completed stamp looks like.