Monday, January 16, 2012

Twenty... and counting

Twenty! This is the number of countries from where I already received a frog cover for my mail art project “the frogs of the world challenge” (on top of which I can add two from regional area). And there are more, travelling to my mail box at the time I’m writing these lines.

For this post I wanted to share with you the three last ones I got, because, as you will see, there are the results of an experiment. I recently had the idea to try a trick to get such frog covers from countries where I have low chance to go. I decided to get some stamps from the desired country, to prepare my cover and sent it to the philatelic service of the country, asking them that they simply send it back to me. The cover is already franked so I did not see any reason why they would refuse. I selected three “friendly” philatelic services to start my experimentation: Iceland, Liechtenstein and Luxembourg. And as you will see below, it worked from the three of them.
All three covers below are “over franked” as I could not decide myself to break the stamp set I had bought and decided to use the whole set on the cover. And I really like the result.

The first one I tried was Iceland. I used the set of four stamps issued on the 27h of January 2011 to celebrate the 50th anniversary of the World Wide Fund for Nature. Here the cover I got back.

Nice one isn’t it? They nicely added the “air mail” blue label and the postmark from Reykjavik is really clean.
The four stamps picture endangered birds: from left to right and top to bottom: the Barnacle goose (Branta leucopsis), the White-fronted goose (Anser albifrons), the Common scoter (Melanitta nigra) and the Gadwall (Anas strepera). All stamps also contain the WWF logo in the top left corner.

Encouraged by this success, I tried Liechtenstein. For this one I used a set of four stamps issued on the 14th of November 2011 and dedicated to castles in Liechtenstein. Here is the cover.

The four stamps picture four different castles as they looked by at the end of the 19th century (so sometimes they are in ruins). The stamps are based on paintings from the artist Moriz Menzinger (1832-1914). Clockwise, the stamps picture the following castles:
- the Schalun ruin in the Vaduz Forest
- the Vaduz Castle viewed from the north
- the Gutenberg Castle in Balzers
- the Schellenberg ruins

Again the stamps have been cleanly cancelled. What seems strange for me is the date on the cancel: 23.14.11 ? Is it a mistake ?
This cover is by the way the first cover I get from Liechtenstein and bearing stamps!

Finally, before leaving for Australia for my vacation, I tried a third country: Luxembourg. I used a set of four stamps issued on the 6th of November 2011. This set is the second in a series about “trades of yesterdays”.

 The nice stamps picture old trades: the potter, the joiner, the printer, the stonemason. It is not very visible on the scan, but all small symbols pictured in the left bottom corner of the stamps are printed in gold.
Again a nice and clean cancel on the stamps.

I may try again this experimentation with different countries. I will let you know the results. Once again, if you want to help me in my project, just drop me a mail and I will tell you how you can help!


Laura said...

Frog covers look great! Do you have either of these Canadian cancels?

Jeff said...

I was recently thinking about doing the same thing for the exact same countries.