WHAT you ask is the ERASISTIBLE STAMP EXCHANGE…well back in a the mid 80’s a few of my friends ELIZABETH WALSH and LORNA HUTSELL shared with me the idea of carving my own rubber stamps out of the white plastic drafting erasers,,actually I am sure i tried few different kinds of erasers but we found that the white plastic ones carved the best and held up the best ie they didn’t crumble when used repeatedly.. I believe that it was Elizabeth that started the exchange and as I remember we would carve our images and stamp them on 3×5 or maybe it was 4×6 cards and make 10 or 11 ( the 11th one was for ourselves to remember what we had exchanged) then we would send them Elizabeth and she would sort them out and return to us 10 different cards, one each from the participants. It was great fun seeing all the different designs that others carved and the cards were fun to look through. I know that I started a large paper scrap book and started mounting the cards in them so that I would have them readily available to look at and inspire me for my next weeks carving..at least I think we did it once a week… I should know because when Elizabeth decide that she had done this long enough she allowed me to continue the EXCHANGE so now the cards came to me instead of Elizabeth.
It was a simple process to carve the stamps merely trace your image onto a piece of tracing paper then lay that on the eraser then rub it with a bone folder and viola you transferred the image onto the stamp then you only needed to carve it. For that we used the linoleum carving blade and removed the pieces of the eraser that were not part of the image .. We carved all kinds of things people , images of animals, logo images, letters , numbers just about anything we could think of and my dear late friend LORNA HUTSELL carved and image of me and sent it to me… we also carved on both sides of the eraser to maximize them. Sometimes the things went together like a ball and bat but sometimes not just depending on the size of our image… I teased Lorna because the image she carved of me was on the back side of a toilet bowl she had carved,, hummm..Lorna and I got so into this the we started making small bound calendars with only carved images. We typically only made about 10 or so and they were then shared so like 5 each and given to special friends, and of course one for each of us… at first I think we each did 10 with our own carvings then we started making a theme and each carved 6 months of images so half and half…
This was Lorna and the infamous YARD BIRDS from the Yarbird store in Chehalis/Centraila…and rather than Floridian I had become the FLORIDIDAIN..
the above are a few pages from our calligraphy group (NIB N’ INKS aka south sound calligrapers) you will note that the bottom right carving is by SUE NAN DOUGLAS who because hand carving has such a unique look went on to market some of her designs to readymade stamp companies.. hand carving was hot and can be again if you have images that you want and they aren’t out there give it a try …
You can buy the plastic white eraser from Amazon and in a larger square but still the ½ thick so you can hold it and not ink your fingers and you can also carve on the other side..Amazon link to white vinyl erasers by Alvin
you can look for the tools on Amazon too.
Lastly I would recommend that you consider the book as it has lots of tips and hints on how to do this and most important is don’t undercut your image ..alway cut away from the image to the outside.
AS ALWAYS THANKS FOR STOPPIN BY wire headed cyber toad aka kath