Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Portrait of a Newborn

Portrait stamps are difficult, there is no question about it; but there are several things that can make it even more difficult.
  • Teeth--I don't care who the carver is, I have never seen teeth done well.
  • Familiarity with the subject--Carving a stranger is harder than carving someone you know (okay, that sounds weird). Knowing a person's expressions and personality helps in determining what is important in an image.
  • Potential for offense--If you carve the image of a jellyfish, it's not likely to walk off in a huff if you botch the job. Carve your Mother in Law, though, and you'd better get it right.
  • Babies--even the babies themselves aren't familiar with their own expressions, so how can anyone else be? Add to that their rapidly changing bodies and you have a conundrum in short order. And of course, hands are so very key to a baby's expressions--and we know how easy they are to carve, right?
Now that I've pointed out how hard portraits stamps are, it's going to sound obnoxiously self serving to say that I am very pleased with how this stamp turned out. But I am enormously happy (and relieved) with the results, in spite of how intimidated I felt in the beginning. I think I will always feel that way about such personal images.

I'll let you know what Mom thinks when she gets it.