Write Lightning is a blog from writer Deb Thompson.
Everyone is welcome here.
(Some links or topics may not be completely kid-appropriate.)

Wed, Aug 18 2004

Rubber Stamping Is Both Disease And Cure

One of my ongoing interests is rubber stamps and rubber stamp art/mail art. If you think of a rubber stamp as something to put PAID or COPY on business papers, I must tell you that you have missed a world of fun. Check out Bridget's Stamping Friends Card Gallery. Enjoy the Meer Image Art Gallery. If you want more, a search at Google will get you many online galleries to enjoy.

Of course, there's a very good chance that some of you reading this are starting to get a particular sort of twitch in the joints of your fingers and at the bend in the wrist of your dominant hand. Your heart rate may become elevated and you may find yourself getting up from the computer to go see if you still have those old PAID and COPY rubber stamps you used to have around there somewhere. You may actually experience a unique type of panic attack if you can't locate them. If you rush back to the computer and start searching for places to buy art rubber stamps, you'll know you've been bitten by the rubber bug (although technically, these days a lot of stamps are made of acrylic).

It's all right. Really. Take a few deep breaths and keep reading.

The first thing you have to do is read a few basics. That way you'll know a little more about what to get your hands on for the best stamping experience. Check out Redstick's Remedial Rubber, where you can get online help with basic rubber stamping and learn how to mask, sponge and emboss. I think that page was done some time ago, and since new tools and materials are coming along all the time, try Learn2Stamp for a little more help. You can find books at the library and there are also magazines that feature rubber stamp art. Some of it may be too cute for you, so you should know that there is a whole camp of stampers who shun cute and go straight for weird.

Some years ago, before the internet was the easy place to navigate that it is now, I was in a stamping group with Stampo, who went on to develop and sell his wonderful Viva Las Vegastamps!, which are mostly wild and wonderful, but he also devloped the Love Me Tender line for those who must have their cute bear fix. Stampo got so embroiled in the whole rubber stamp world that he also ended up opening a retail rubber stamp store in Las Vegass. So you see, this whole thing can go from being a little twitch of the fingers to a full-blown career before you know it.

The cute vs. weird controversy continues among stampers, so many companies sell both kinds of stamps and include other designs that defy categorization. You can get stamps depicting animals, nationally-known politicians (note the juxtaposition there), holiday symbols, vehicles, aliens, furniture, toys, sea monkeys, vegetables and household appliances. There are ethnic stamps, art deco and other retro stamps, fantasy and travel stamps, teacher stamps, religious stamps, word and phrase stamps and many more. And I haven't even touched on the inks: archival, chalk, embossing, pigment, metallic, resist, watercolor and rainbow. There are brayers used to roll ink onto large areas, foils and glitters to add sparkle, charms and tags, eyelets and brads, corner rounders, Fiskars decorative scissors and punches, and then there are the papers and stamping surfaces: matte, glossy, handmade, linen, cardstock, vellum, velvet, fabric, wood and acrylic.

So how are those twitchy fingers doing?

Did I mention the light boxes, paper crimpers and heat guns?

posted at: 16:21 | category: /Playing | link to this entry

Lunge, Grin, Repeat

I really enjoyed watching Mariel Zagunis win her Olympic gold medal. Since Americans had waited 100 years to see the gold in sabre, she made the whole thing worth waiting for, with her swift fighter-style attacks and her post-win exuberance. The facial expressions she wore when she took off her mask made we wonder what looks she had beneath that mask when she was making her no-nonsense moves during the match. I'm sure the folks who seek out sports celebrities to speak for their products are lined up right now to sign her up.

They are all winners, of course. Tan Xue of China, who was defeated by Zagunis in the match, still won a silver medal. It was fun to read that Tan got a lot of her inspiration from watching a film about Zorro. And Sada Jacobson got a bronze medal. All the young women have a lot to celebrate this week.

Getting back to Mariel for a moment, I do think she makes a good point that not every teen should head for college right after high school. Some paths in life just don't follow the typical educational track. That year or two taken before college, when the whole world is open and all things are possible, could be the best time for a teen to explore sports, business or other life ambitions. If you know you need to do something before college, and you have the support of friends or family, taking that time could be the best move you ever make, as long as you have been working really hard on your dreams up to that point. Your preparation might even put you in the right place, at the right time, to make history. Just ask Mariel Zagunis.

posted at: 08:35 | category: /Health and Fitness | link to this entry

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Stealin' copy is as bad as horse-thievin'
and cattle rustlin'! Lightning may strike
such varmints when they least expect it!