US Stamps 2011:The Garden of Love Depicting Flora & Fauna

The Garden of Love, which will be issued on May 19, consists of 10 different stamps depicting a colorful mosaic of flora and fauna in a garden setting.

\"\"The U.S. Postal Service has unveiled the images of its 2011 commemorative stamp program. All of the new stamps are designated as “Forever” stamps and are not marked with a designated postal rate. The current rate for first-class postage is 44 cents.

The Garden of Love, which will be issued on May 19, consists of 10 different stamps depicting a colorful mosaic of flora and fauna in a garden setting. These stamps are a continuation of the Love series begun in 1973. They are intended for use on Valentine’s Day, Mother’s Day and Father’s Day cards, as well as on other occasions when love and affection are expressed.

Award-winning illustrator José Ortega of New York City and Toronto depicts an abstract garden of bright flowers, a butterfly, a strawberry and doves, interlaced with vines that run from one stamp to another. Each prominent element of the design is in the shape of a heart. The word “Love” sits atop each stamp.

In August the Wedding Roses stamp will be issued as part of USPS Weddings series. The stamp is meant for use on the RSVP envelope often enclosed with a wedding invitation and on announcements, thank-you notes, and other correspondence.

The stamp features a photograph taken by Renée Comet of Washington, D.C. The photograph shows two white roses gently resting atop a piece of wedding correspondence. The stamp is meant for use on the RSVP envelope often enclosed with a wedding invitation and on announcements, thank-you notes and other correspondence.
Since the first Forever Stamp, featuring the Liberty Bell, was issued in April 2007, 28 billion Forever Stamps have been sold, resulting in $12.1 billion in total revenue.

Award-winning illustrator José Ortega of New York City and Toronto depicts an abstract garden of bright flowers, a butterfly, a strawberry, and doves, interlaced with vines that run from one stamp to another. Each prominent element of the design is in the shape of a heart. The deep blue background is reminiscent of a brilliant summer sky. The word “Love” sits atop each stamp.

Ortega says, “Garden of Love depicts the abundance of life, its generosity, whose spirit is to be shared by all its creatures. Love’s definition is broader than romantic love. Love is that colorful, full feeling you get when you enjoy being a part of and sharing in the generosity of life.”

To create his design, Ortega made a digital file of his original pencil and marker drawings. Then he added color, improvising until the garden took shape. Ortega, a collector of decorative arts, says tapestries, textiles, and mosaics influenced his choice of colors and patterns.

Ortega’s previous projects for the U.S. Postal Service include the 2007 With Love and Kisses stamp and the Salsa stamp, one of four stamp designs that appeared as part of the 2005 Let’s Dance/Bailemos issuance.

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