Monday, May 18, 2009

Eraser stamp tutorial - Part 1

As promised here is the eraser stamp carving tutorial. Or rather the first part. I wouldn't call myself an expert on this subject, but hopefully my trials and errors will help you get off to a good start. I've divided it into 5 parts so I can tell you all that I know without having the post being longer than most people's arm! ;-)

I've broken things down into the following bites:

Right, let's get started!

It is called eraser stamps because you cut them from erasers (to start with, anyway!) And most erasers work for this purpose. Although, you should stay clear of erasers that are too stiff or grainy. The best ones are smooth and rubbery - you can bend them without them breaking. Like in the picture below. Fortunately, erasers are fairly cheap so you can afford to experiment!

Pound shops (dollar stores) are a great place to get cheap erasers. But beware that one day they might stop selling that perfect eraser (this has happened to me a couple of times!) - so if you find a favourite, get plenty while you can!

Erasers are fine as long as your stamps are small enough to fit one them. But one day you will wake up wanting to make a stamp that is, say, 5x5 cm and that just won't fit on (most) erasers! What do you do then?

Luckily, there are a few companies that make 'slabs' of cutting media. These are some of them: Speedball, Staedtler Mastercarve and PZ Kut.

Other than the erasers, I have only tried the Speedy-Carve from Speedball (the bubble-gum pink one, they have a white variety but apparently it isn't as good). It comes in blocks of different sizes that you can (obviously) cut into smaller bits according to the size of your stamp. Speedy-Carve is a little bit on the thin side, so you may need to mount it, i.e. glue it to a wooden or acrylic block.

If you can, do experiment with different brands, you may prefer one over the others.

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