I started with a stamp block especially made for cutting stamps. I had bought it ages ago at an art supply store and expected to really like working on it. Here's what I ended up with:
On the left the block as it started out and on the right, obviously, my new very own chevron stamp. These cutting blocks are made of a soft material on top of a wooden block. But that soft material is not soft enough in my opinion and it's very resistant to any drawing material or markers. This means it was virtually impossible to put a design on there to cut. Also it was an unpleasant material to cut and I slipped more than once with my cuttingtools, in the end injuring one of my fingers and blood was flowing (okay, this sounds more dramatic than it was, but it did hurt!).
For stamping the block is absolutely perfect though, it takes the ink very well and it's nice and robust. It also has a good size (about 3x3 inches, but they come in bigger sizes too). Still, I don't think I will use this type of thing again. I'd rather just cut linoleum prints (which I have done before by the way).
To see if it was just me or if different materials would be easier I decided to do a second stamp and for this I chose a very popular cuttingmaterial, namely a soft eraser! That turned out like this:
Even though this stamp is much smaller and more detailed, it was also much easier to cut and much easier to make a mark on with a pen or pencil. I will definitely use erasers again and I hope to find some bigger ones somewhere. This one measures about 1.5 x 2.5 inches. It also takes the ink very well (I used stazon for the tryout of both stamps).
Here's an example of how the stamps look when they are actually printed on paper (in this case my Studio Book).
|(The red ink blobs are from another time and have nothing to do with my bleeding finger, haha.)|
I'm quite happy with how they turned out and I will make more stamps in the future, but I will be more careful with choosing my materials too. ;-) Still all in all, I'll consider this little experiment a success.
Wishing you all a wonderful and artsy weekend! Now go make something!