About the Design of the Stamp
Three artists put together their talent and expertise to create the 2015 Ram Year Stamp published by Canada Post.
Ngan Siu-Mui, Chinese calligrapher,
Susan Scott, illustrator,
Hélène L'Heureux, graphic designer.
[ Read their commentaries below ]
Commentaries by Hélène L'Heureux and Ngan Siu-Mui
Hélène L'Heureux, graphic designer
As a grahpic designer, working on a Stamp project for Canada Post is always a challenge for me. And an extraordinary journey. One needs to be patient, preseverant, resourceful, like for an expedition. And working on a prestigious series as the Lunar Year project is like going on a wonderful expedition, with lots of exploring, discovering...The challenge is to find a original perspective to illustrate a theme already covered by so many artists and designers.
Susan Scott's special talent for woodcut printing was also a piece of the puzzle: the [agent] or [element] for the Year 2015 is Wood. So it made sense that the illustration would evoke the woodcut printing.
The combination of the three rams is crucial. It must fit in a tiny space, yet be true to the story, recognizable.
Decorated with the gold rain of petals, the background represents an idealized landscape where mountains tend to heaven. The three rams rest under the tree with plum bossoms. Plum is the flower of winter heralding of spring.
The landscape colors were inspired by the Danxia mountains. These are among six Chinese geological sites listed collectively on the List of World Heritage of UNESCO in July 2010.
Working on the year of the Ram stamp issue was a unique opportunity to immerse myself in a world rich in stories, myths and legends of Chinese culture...It was this heritage I tried to bring the stamps, for example, in the "Three Ram Greeting Spring" image, which has ochoes in other forms of Chinese art.
Ngan Siu-Mui, Chinese calligrapher
It is true the challenge is to find an original perspective to illustrate a theme already covered by so many artists and designers. As a Chinese artist in 3 fields: calligraphy, painting and seal carving, I can understand Hélène L’Heureux's patience and preseverance to explore her great idea: putting the combination of the three rams, calligraphy and the different legends in a tiny space. In the tiny space she created a far-reaching landscape - mountains after mountains and legend after legend. Lots of imaginations are brought out to the audiences.
The gold rain of petals which came from the western fairy tale merging well to the Ram year stamp design. The West met the East in a harmonized atmosphere.
For sure it is not an easy work to merge all the stories, myths and legends of Chinese culture in the small stamps. Susan Scott's illustration of the woodcut printing is unique and stylish.
It was indeed a pleasant and valuable experience to have the opportunity to work with Hélène.