Oak Spring Garden Foundation’s Paul and Bunny Mellon’s Visual Biographies

On February 23rd, Helen and Antonio arrived in Verona, Italy just as 12 towns nearby were placed on lockdown to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. They were there to do a press inspection for this book about Paul and Bunny Mellon’s close connection to trompe l’oeil paintings–especially those at their home in Upperville, Virginia. Our travelers returned safely and now the first sample bound books have arrived. We’re grateful for the support given by Oak Spring Garden Foundation for this project, and hope you like the book.

Paul and Bunny Mellon's Visual Biographies

Paul and Bunny Mellon's Visual Biographies

Paul and Bunny Mellon's Visual Biographies

Paul and Bunny Mellon's Visual Biographies

Paul and Bunny Mellon's Visual Biographies

Paul and Bunny Mellon's Visual Biographies

Paul and Bunny Mellon's Visual Biographies

Paul and Bunny Mellon's Visual Biographies

Paul and Bunny Mellon's Visual Biographies

USPS releases the Celebrate stamp!

Celebrate! If you know someone who is having a birthday, or a wedding, or got that new record deal, or published their first book, or even just made it through a tough week, it’s time to celebrate! Consider sending them a note using the new “celebrate” stamp we designed. I know it will make them happy!

USPS releases the Made of Hearts love stamp

The world can always use a little more love. Tomorrow, the latest in the USPS Love Stamp series will be issued. We hope our design, made with dozens of hearts, encourages people to build many loving relationships in their lives. Family, friends, partners, pets, and even strangers. Thanks to Ricky Altizer for helping creating the final artwork! Love ya!

Made of Hearts Stamp

Woodstock stamp recognized for excellence in the Communication Arts Typography Annual

What a great way to start the new year! Our lettering for the postage stamp commemorating Woodstock was recognized for excellence and included in the new Communication Arts Typography Annual (January/February issue). Thanks to USPS for supporting our design and to Ricky Altizer for help with the final artwork.

Communication Arts Typography Annual 10

Woodstock Stamp in Communication Arts Typography Annual 10

African Apparel exhibition catalogue with Scala Publishers

“African Apparel” is a new exhibition catalogue we designed with Scala Publishers and The Cornell Fine Arts Museum at Rollins in Florida. Special thanks to Ricky Altizer for a job well done!

African Apparel

African Apparel

African Apparel

African Apparel

African Apparel

African Apparel

African Apparel

African Apparel

African Apparel

African Apparel

African Apparel

Holiday Wreaths stamp released by the USPS

We love working in charming, colonial-era, Old Town, Alexandria. During the holidays, many doors are decorated with wreaths in a variety of styles. Inspired by their beauty, we worked with local floral artist Laura Dowling to create a set of stamps featuring wreaths (and local doors). Issued last week, they’re available now.

Holiday Wreaths

USPS Announces the Hip Hop Stamp for 2020

Today, USPS announced several stamps to be issued in 2020. We’re extremely excited about this group commemorating Hip Hop’s contributions to our culture. It is arguably the most important US cultural export of the last 50 years. MC-ing (Rap), DJ-ing, B-Boying (sometimes called breakdancing), and Graffiti Art. We were fortunate to work with the talented Cade Martin on the photography and proud to have designed these stamps. We hope you like them and will look for their release next year.

Hip Hop Stamp—DJ and MC

Hip Hop Stamp—BBoy and Graffiti

Winter Berries stamp

Art directing postage stamps can be an exercise in patience. Six years ago, with help and encouragement from Helen McNiell and Carol Beehler in our office, we started working on a set of stamps featuring plants that produce berries during the winter. Steve Buchanan created the art, and Leslie Badani worked on the booklet cover. A real group effort! Yesterday, the stamps were issued and available for purchase. A long and overdue thank you everyone who helped make the Winterberry stamps!

Winterberry Stamp

50th Anniversary of Woodstock

Next week marks the 50th anniversary of “Woodstock: 3 Days of Peace & Music.” A half-million people attended the festival. Do you know someone who was there? For the rest of us, it’s a legendary event where music, cooperation, and peaceful celebration unfolded capturing the popular imagination. In designing a stamp to commemorate the event, we combined the iconic dove of the original festival with custom lettering evoking concert posters of the era. Wishing you Peace and Music!

Woodstock Music Forever

The Art of Stamp Design on Art Matters with Antonio Alcalá

We’ve jumped the pond! ArtUK podcast “Art Matters” broadcast an episode on the art of stamp design. Host Ferren Gipson interviews Paul Skinner of the British Library and our own Antonio Alcala (he starts at the 6-minute mark). Take a listen for the philatelic fundamentals. Photo Credit: Stamps, Lisa Milroy (b.1959),British Council Collection

Art UK

Destination Moon Exhibition for SITES

Along with designing stamps commemorating the 50th anniversary of the moon landing, we also had the good fortune to collaborate with Catalone Design Co. in creating the traveling exhibition “Destination Moon” for the Smithsonian. Including the Apollo 11 command module Columbia that returned the astronauts to the earth, the exhibit chronicles the technology, people, and historical events that made the amazing feat possible. The exhibition is currently on display in Seattle and will travel to Cincinnati afterwards.

Destination Moon

Destination Moon

Destination Moon

Destination Moon

Destination Moon

Destination Moon

Destination Moon

Destination Moon

Destination Moon

1969 Moon Landing Stamp

Tomorrow is the 50th anniversary of astronauts first landing on the moon. We’re proud of our contribution helping commemorate this historic event with the design of two postage stamps: One shows Neil Armstrong’s famous photograph of Buzz Aldrin on the surface of the moon, and the other stamp marks the location on the moon where the Apollo Lunar Module touched down. May these stamps land in your mailbox soon!

1969 Moon Landing

Judy Chicago: New Views

We just received our advance copy of “Judy Chicago: New Views”— her first major monograph in nearly twenty years. We’re so pleased with how it turned out, and grateful we were asked to design this important examination of Chicago’s work. Well done Helen McNiell!

Judy Chicago: New Views

Judy Chicago: New Views

Judy Chicago: New Views

Judy Chicago: New Views

Judy Chicago: New Views

Judy Chicago: New Views

Judy Chicago: New Views

Judy Chicago: New Views

Judy Chicago: New Views

2019 Flag Stamp Released by the USPS

Sometimes the story behind a stamp’s creation never gets told. Not this time. Three years ago, Antonio traveled to Chicago for a milestone birthday celebration for his first design instructor, mentor, and friend Philip Burton. During the visit, on a walk down the famous Chicago Pier, Antonio took flag photos, thinking perhaps one might be suitable for a stamp. Today, the 2019 US Flag Stamp has been issued and features one of those photos. Every time mail goes out from Studio A now, it’s a happy reminder of that special visit.

Flags on the Chicago Pier by Antonio Alcala

Studio A Stamps on Jeopardy!

We’re no Jeopardy Champion like Chuck Forrest, but we would have done well during last night’s game when the question to three of the answers (including the Daily Double) involved our stamps! Thanks to Deborah Eckbreth and Carlos Alcala for the alert!

Jeopardy! Frozen Treats
Frozen Treats Stamp
Jeopardy Total Eclipse of the Sun
Total Eclipse of the Sun
Jeopardy! WPA Posters
WPA Posters Stamp