ArtistampArtistamp refers to a postage stamp-like artform. It is similar to a cinderella, in that it is not valid for postage, but it differs from a cinderella in that no intention is made to fool any post office or collector of stamps. The artistamp is intended to be a miniature artform which can depict or commemorate any subject its creator chooses.
Artistamps are often created uniquely or in limited editions. An artistamp creator will often include his work on actual mail, alongside valid postage stamps, in order to decorate the envelope with his art. Sometimes such an instance is called mail art, although that is considered to be a separate discipline.
Techniques for the creation of artistamps may or may not include perforating the boundaries of the piece to more resemble a stamp, as well as applying gum to the reverse side of the paper. Whole sheets of such stamps are often made at one time. The artwork can be hand drawn or painted, photographed, xeroxed, rubber stamped, or even output by computer-driven printer.
Creators of art within this genre include Donald Evans, Anna Banana, Steve Smith and the astonishingly prolific New Zealander Bruce Henderson. (Henderson's output spans more than three decades and encompases an entire alternative universe of artistamp countries. These inlcude the Sultanate of Occussi-Ambeno, the Kingdom of all the Sedang (not to be confused with the historic Kingdom of Sedang), the Sultanate of Upper Yafa, the People's Republic of Kempland, the Free Vinland Republic, the Republic of Liegerland, the Republic of Port Maria, Tui Tui, Aldabra, Karenni, Raoul, the Land of Muggy, Terra Candella, Cryonica, Aramoana, Whangamomona, Laré, Nova Arcadia, the Antarctic Confederation and the Khanate of Bokhara. Henderson's artistamp world even has its own imaginary "United Nations" - the "International Council of Independent States" (ICIS). His creations are sometimes identified as micronations).
Another entity that has issued what might be called either artistamps, cinderellas or local post stamps (as they have been used for delivery in Houghton and Hancock, Michigan, and New York, USA), is The Empire of Upper and Lower, through its Imperial Post.