In whichever creative field you work, designing for small spaces is tricky. It’s much more than simply removing elements to make things fit. Whether it’s architecture, packaging or clothing, all the relevant information must be present, legible and do its job.
Stamps were always a subject that came up whilst I was studying, as my illustration lecturer had a great love of stamp designs. The ability to have such a big impact and be functional, despite its limitation in size, is indeed admirable. Although I wasn’t an illustrator, and I may be biased towards small design detail in general (a story for another time), I myself have a real love for the small but mighty postage stamp.
Royal Mail has just launched a new stamp collection with Osboure Ross – their fourth collaboration together – called Animail. These graphic illustrations of animals are unique in the fact that they wrap around the side (or top) of the letter, which makes it seem as though they are holding on to the post. As well as this creative feature, you’ll notice that the usually functional detail of perforated edges (used to aid the separation of batch prints) has been kept in parts. Although this collection wouldn’t appear in the traditional batch format, it’s a nod to the iconic design that we are all familiar with, and a great way of keeping its purpose as a ‘stamp’, not a ‘sticker’.
Aiming to appeal to both adults and children, these would certainly have been on my wish list as a young penpal! Any excuse for me to pick up my pen and send a few postcards.