About a year ago, I halted my long-standing tradition of blogging about the mail I received. Somehow I’d turned the delightful pastime of documenting beautiful letters into a responsibility, and I felt a great deal of self-imposed pressure to photograph mail before I’d even read what they contained (mostly due to the fact that limited winter light rarely allows for good picture-taking indoors!).
To be honest, though, I did so enjoy possessing a visual diary of the letters that traveled to me from various corners of the world. With that in mind, I’m resurrecting my old series with a slight twist: as the title suggests, I will mainly feature stamps and envelopes, with some (assorted) exceptions.
What better letter to kick off this series than my last letter from Australia for the time being?
I love this curious assortment of sea creatures (or “Sea Creatures,” as the text puts it so regally!) and the impassive charm of that emperor penguin who just barely fits within the frame of the tape.
I wondered if I’d stumbled upon some gold-encrusted early Renaissance or late medieval art in this lovely stamp – and a little research attributed this 2018 “Musical Angels” design to a contemporary artist, Ursula Betka, who brings the traditional egg tempera style into the twenty-first century. Stunning!
While I promised I would mostly talk about envelopes, I think this first-day-of-issue postcard qualifies as both stamp and sundry! It makes me nautilus-nostalgic for my trip to Monterey Bay Aquarium – two years ago this month! – and how those alien cephalopods seemed to float weightlessly in their darkened tank.
Now this particular photographic specimen will enjoy navigating the seas of the wall over my desk.