US:New Holiday Stamps

The US Post issued 3 holiday stamps on 14thOct 2011 as forever stamps.

\"\"Holiday Baubles:The U.S. Postal Service’s cheery Holiday stamps for 2011 feature four colorful ornaments sure to add to the joys of the season. Linda Fountain, an illustrator located in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, created the ornaments shown in the stamp art. Drawing on styles popular during the 1950s, she first sketched the ornaments then rendered them using cut paper. These renderings were scanned and turned into digital files. The actual art objects are slightly larger than a sheet of typing paper.

Hanukkah:With this festive stamp, the U.S. Postal Service commemorates Hanukkah, the Jewish Festival of Lights. The stamp art was created by graphic designer Suzanne Kleinwaks of Falls Church, Virginia. Bright colors express the joyful spirit of the holiday, and the eight shapes behind the letters spelling out “Hanukkah” symbolize the eight days and nights of the celebration. The second “k” appears on the silhouette of a dreidel, a spinning top that children traditionally play with at Hanukkah. Each of the letters in this design is subtly tilted to mimic the movement of the dreidel as it twirls.

This stamp design is the fourth U.S. issuance to commemorate Hanukkah. The Postal Service issued its first Hanukkah stamp, a stylized illustration of a menorah, in 1996. A design featuring an ornate dreidel followed in 2004, and a photograph of a menorah with nine lit candles was released in 2009.

Kwanzaa:This is the fourth stamp design issued by the U.S. Postal Service in celebration of Kwanzaa. The first Kwanzaa commemorative stamp was issued in 1997. With this colorful new stamp design, the U.S. Postal Service celebrates Kwanzaa, a non-religious holiday that takes place over seven days beginning each year on December 26 and ending January 1. Kwanzaa draws on African traditions and takes its name from the phrase for “first fruits” in Swahili, a widely spoken African language. Stamp artist Daniel Minter created a festive and highly symbolic design to illustrate a Kwanzaa holiday celebration.

The bold colors in the stamp art represent the colors of the Kwanzaa flag—green for growth, red for blood, and black for the African people. These same colors are repeated in the candles that are lighted each night of the holiday. Minter’s focus is the family unit celebrating the holiday at home, an important element of Kwanzaa. The design was carved into a linoleum block, and then scanned into a computer where it was colorized.

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