Around Here: November 2021
ScanNCut: Perfect Placement & Easy Sizing for T-Shirt Designs

#CarveDecember 2021 Begins Today!

This is the EIGHTH year of #CarveDecember.  I can hardly believe it.

Here are five reasons why YOU should participate in #CarveDecember right now this year today:

1. You don't need a lot of supplies to carve a stamp.  If you don't have rubber, use a potato or an apple or a pencil eraser.  And you don't need carving tools.  If you've got a craft knife, you can carve a stamp.  Here's a video tutorial from me on how to carve a stamp from a pencil eraser:

And even if you do have all the supplies, we're still talking about a shoebox size amount of stuff.  Stamp carving is a wonderfully portable art form.

2. Even though this is a daily project, you do not need to dedicate a lot of time to it.  Keep your stamps small and simple and you can design, carve, print, and post your stamps every day in under 30 minutes.  I know this from personal experience.  I had my son at the end of November in 2019 and I managed to make it through #CarveDecember 2019 by keeping it to a strict 30 minutes every day.  Here are some of those stamps:

These stamps are TINY.  But they look great printed as a pattern.  Many days it took me less than 30 minutes.  You really *do* have the time for this project!

3. The #CarveDecember Community is AWESOME.  They are talented and kind and generous and it's wonderful to be a part of all the good feeling that the challenge creates.  People freely share their difficulties, personal breakthroughs, tips for getting better results, and more!  Every year I make a new online friend or two and I discover new-to-me artists who are deeply inspiring.

4. It is a Learning Experience for all who participate.
  Hundreds of people have carved their very first stamp during #CarveDecember.  Hundreds.  And those who have experience carving stamps have found that the daily carving deeply influences their creative practice around carving.  They improve in all areas over the month -- design, accuracy, speed, printing technique, and so on.  But you don't have to believe me, here are some posts about that learning (these images are embedded from instagram - if you are reading this blog post as an email and don't see them, click HERE):

You can see tons more inspiration and read people's posts at the #CarveDecember hashtag.  Speaking of the hashtag, I figured out how to get rid of the spam on the tag.  And I put together a video on how you can block the spam accounts so you only see stamp carving when you visit the hashtag.

5. Art is a habit and a daily art challenge like #CarveDecember can help jump start your creativity.   Whether you're in a rut creatively or you simply haven't been creating lately, push yourself to simply jump in without being ready.  Being ready is overrated and unlikely to ever happen.  And remember, even if you only carve one stamp, that's one more stamp than you had yesterday! :)  If you need a bit of a pep talk, here's why I think daily art making matters:

I hope that you will join in on this wonderful art experience.  If you need some help learning how to carve or what supplies to use, I shared a long list in this blog post from last week.  And the #CarveDecemberClass is available to you at any time.

Thanks for stopping by!