Every now and then, stamps free-fall in your lap, and you get a chance to experiment and play around once again with styles you tried years ago and failed to make work for you. A stamper friend at church gave me three boxes of wood-mounted stamps to choose from and pass along. Most were not my style and have already been passed to another stamper at church, but I pulled some out to play with, including these two large Greek architecture stamps.
These two stamps appeal to the historian in me, but they present challenges to my style. First, they are LARGE, which makes it hard to leave much white space around them. Second, they have a Victorian schoolbook vibe that is at odds with my crisp, modern, stylized sensibilities. Third, they beg for coloring and/or mixed media treatment. While I might own most of the coloring options open to we stampers these days, you'd never call me an expert in any one of them. And we've already seen what a mess I make of mixed media.
I decided to try to crop the images, do a little tearing and inking. I truly DISLIKE the results.
The coffee ink was a nod to the vintage feel and the blue was reminiscent of the Greek sky and architectural blueprints. But they just don't work, do they? Perhaps if I'd switched them...but no. Just no. It looks messy and lazy and weird to my eye...a big swing and miss.
So why share them on the blog? Well, my hope is that you'll see that failure isn't fatal. It's always an option, though, and happens pretty often in my crafty room. I'll play around with these stamps some more, but it's highly likely they will join the other rejects and end up in another stamper's collection where they might be more valuable and constructive.
The important thing is to keep trying to grow and stretch yourself as a crafter or artist. Push, play, fail, succeed, grow. It's only paper, and it's all good.
Even if it ends up in the circular file.
Mercy, grace, peace, and love,