Rubber Stamp – Twinkle, twinkle Little Bat! – Grey Long-Eared Bat

by Angela

In this post I showed how I made a Copper Plate Etching and mentioned that I had also made a Rubber Stamp Print of the same image and text – well here it is. This was one of the most difficult stamps I had carved (until I carved one this weekend!)  More about that soon 🙂

I mainly wanted to talk about the differences (for me) in the 2 processes – Copper Plate Etching and Rubber Stamp carving. I really like the Copper Plate Etching I made on the course at Cardiff Print Workshop, but enjoyed cutting (and hand printing) the Rubber Stamp more. I think this is because I don’t like being out of control and at the whim of chemicals and presses. Because I hand carve (and hand print) the stamp if there is a mistake it’s mine – I am not at the mercy of something going wrong with the plate, chemicals (too little or too much), the printing press itself,  and lots of other permutations. Maybe this is because I can be very impatient? But then there are those that tell me they wouldn’t have the patience to carve a stamp.

I find rubber stamp carving a much more forgiving process and if something is less than perfect it doesn’t look awful – sometimes it even makes it look better and adds to the charm. I wanted to make sure I got the wings right so made a small test wing first. I’ve never done this before with a stamp I usually go straight for it.

The picture below shows the drawing transferred on to the rubber (SpeedyCarve). You can see that I had the image stuck on with a bit of masking tape and I’ve just flipped it back.

I then cut the SpeedyCarve away from the main block. You can also see my practice wing stamped on the bit of paper on the top.

In this picture you can see that I have just cut part of the outline of the bat.

I always stamp as  I got to make sure the image is coming along as it should. The ink on the rubber also acts as a good guide for cutting. Also I love to see the image emerge as I go along (not something you can do with a Copper Plate Etching).

I found the Bat face quite difficult – I looked at a lot of Bat images and to me the always looked like they were smiling and I couldn’t get over how cute they were (maybe not everyone will agree). You can see the face gradually emerge in the images below.

This picture shows the rest of the wings gradually being carved.

This is my attempt at a Grey Long-Eared Bat – sadly one of the rarest Mammals in UK. I am not sure if I have done this lovely creature justice – the fur was quite difficult too. You can see my notes on using the ink pads in different ways.

Also here is a photo of cutting the text for Twinkle, twinkle Little Bat! As always I type the text on my lovely Silver-Reed Silverette – scan it in and increase it to approximately twice the size and use this to carve.

You can find out more about these beautiful creatures on the Bat Conservation Trust Website I have been a member since 2014.

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Elephant's Child 10th May 2016 - 9:21 am

Wow, wow and wow.
I have a weakness for bats. Intelligent, family minded beasties who are often unjustly maligned.
And I am awed at your skill.
My shaky hands would make a fatal error very quickly. Fatal for the bat.

Angela 10th May 2016 - 6:03 pm

Thank you Elephant's Child. Yout get lovely big fruit bats in your neck of the woods 🙂 Hope you are well.


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