Step One: Original
|The process of creating your Art Stamps with Ready Stamps begins with the artwork. You can use original drawings in pen and ink, computer graphic printouts, (the example on this page is a type font called Fleurons manipulated with a simple graphics program) or photocopies. This will allow you to adjust the scale of your design elements, as well. Reducing designs can make quite a difference. If you are able to use a computer, you have access to an overwhelming amount of choices in fonts, images that are copyright free, and their potential variations in use! Let your creativity loose. You might want to use your company name, your logo, a signature; or you can use designs from clip art sources and from hundreds of amazing books such as the Dover Pictorial Archive Series. Dover allows artists to use up to ten designs from this series in a single project without having to seek further permission. Please DO NOT use copyright protected material that is not of your own design. This includes cartoon characters and the likenesses of famous people or characters. If you WONDER if you have permission to use images, then it’s likely you dont, unless the images are drawn by you, are from copyright free sources, or you have permission from the designer in writing. Just because a person CAN steal doesnt make it right to do so. Respect Copy Rights.|
Step Two: The Transparency
|When Ready Stamps receives your order, they first create a black and white transparency, similar to those used with overhead projectors. It is a film negative print of the artwork that is sent for use. Everything that WAS black is now transparent. You can also use the black and white transparencies to create silk screen stencils with PHOTO-EZ screen print sheets.This plastic sheet is used to form the acrylic plate.|
Step Three: The Plate
|Ready Stamps will then create the plate, which is a clear acrylic replica of your 9 inch by 7 inch black and white artwork, with a raised surface like the rubber stamp, but hard. It is used to create the next matrix, but can also be used to press into polymer clay for indented patterns. The plate can be brittle, and cracks easily, but still can be useful! It tends to become curled up and even more brittle if exposed to sunlight, so keep yours put away when not using it.|
Step Four: The Matrix
|The Matrix is a brown bakeo-lite board, with indented designs. The rubber is pressed against the matrix in a vulcanization. The matrix is absolutely wonderful as a plate of molds for polymer clay work. You can press clay into the design, and remove the design elementtrim rough edges with a blade, and apply to other clay as trim or molding.You can mimic filigree this way. Powdering the matrix with talcum powder applied with a brush or a ponce bag a bit first helps to ease removal from the Matrix. Or, you can use them as backgrounds and appliqué elements. Beads can be rolled along the matrix to impress the design, and staining after baking makes for some beautiful faux finish effects.|
Step Five: The Rubber Stamp
|The final product from Ready-Stamps is the rubber stamp. This is sent to you in the uncut sheet, and you can cut and mount it if you choose to do so.
The rubber sheets can be cut with scissors around the design elements if desired, and then mounted with rubber cement or double sided tape to blocks of wood, foam board, or baked clay handles.You can also cut it into sheets that can be rolled along with the clay through a pasta machine! DO NOT bake or heat the rubber. Store your rubber out of the sunlight and away from heat sources. You can also order more than one sheet of rubber made from your designs if you wish, although there is a small additional charge.
|Shown here, it is mixed with slices of flower canes.The results look very rich and detailed, as do silk screened patterns using the same designs on Photo-EZ sheets.||Mica powders such as Pearl-Ex pigments can be used to highlight raised areas while the clay is still raw. Mica shift effects using either the matrix or the stamps with mica bearing clays create an almost holographic look. Acrylic or heat set oil paints can be use to fill in baked areas for a faux enamel effect, or fill with soft clay and re-bake for an inlaid effect. Donna Katos brocade technique uses acrylic paints filling the indented patterns in a sheet of clay, which is then rolled flat after drying. The indentations can be left raised for a faux enamel look.Rubber stamps and silk screens together can be used on fabric, paper, polymer clay, acrylic beads and more. The stamps can be used as texture sheets when using Shiva Paint Sticks on textiles and polymer clay both to create wearable art fabric and matching buttons and jewelry!|
Here are a few tips for best results.
- Start with a 9×7 rectangle on a sheet of clean white paper or card stock.
- Use cut out drawn or photocopied images, and arrange them inside the rectangle with room between the design elements so that they can be cut apart in the rubber form but don’t leave a lot of white showing add more designs! Fit in as many as you can and you will see what an amazingly economical set of tools you will be getting. Scans and printouts can be used to finalize the set of designs desired and eliminate any paper cut lines that may be showing from the pasted images.
- Try cutting squares or strips of images with interesting texture patterns.
- Use images with clear detail and sharp contrast. You want to use Black and White, not Gray scale.
- Avoid hair-thin lines and very large dark areas.
- Paste into place (we use a glue stick). Arrange the pieces so that juxtapositions of images next to each other can also be used to form interesting patchwork style pieces.
- When mailing, sandwich artwork between 2 sheets of cardboard so it doesn’t wrinkle or smudge, since every mark is reproduced when the stamps are made!
- Send artwork along with $47.00 (plus $8.00 shipping/handling). For additional art boards in the same order, cost is $47 plus $2 each for shipping.
- Additional sheets of rubber are $8 each.
- Remember to specify PLATE, MATRIX, and RUBBER and TRANSPARENCY when you order. Some people dont use all four but they are wonderful tools for making texture and patterns in pressed paper or polymer clay.
- Use the black and white transparencies to create silk screen stencils with PHOTO-EZ screen print sheets.
- Remember that the black images shown on your original artwork will be the same thing that is printed by the stamps so there’s no need to reverse words when ordering. HOWEVER, if you want to use the matrix plates for words, they must be reversed, or “wrong-reading”.