Monday, January 30, 2012

Stamp Art Fever

Stamp Art Fever Updated With February New Themed Collections

Pisa, Italy - Indie developers Francesco Chessari and Nicola Pacini today are thrilled to announce the release and worldwide availability of the updated version of Stamp Art Fever, the first title with intriguing combination of social gaming, art and stamp collecting. This update include Holiday themed collections: 60 new art-stamps to collect plus several improvements.

In Stamp Art Fever you are an art-stamp collector who builds his virtual stamp collection by continuously searching, buying, trading, and bidding on any of over 600 beautiful stamps in 20 levels. Every stamp is a little piece of art created by professional illustrators and artists exclusively for this game!

If you enjoy collecting or you are a simple amateur of arts, Stamp Art Fever is a must-have game for you. Elegant graphics, beautiful stamps with realistic art design, melodious background music will take you into a different world!

You have several ways to get the stamps you are looking for:
* Visit the Philately and make your purchases
* Sell to shop your duplicates to get coins for new stamps
* Search your missing copy in the Black Market
* Connect with other players all over the world and propose exchange
* Participate in auctions to bid on hard-to-find stamps

Device requirements:
* iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad
* Requires iOS 4.0 or later
* 286 MB

Pricing and Availability:
Stamp Art Fever 14.0 is free of charge and available exclusively through the App Store in the Games category.

Located in Pisa, Italy, independent Italian software developers Francesco Chessari and Nicola Pacini share a passion for crafting incredibly software for the iPhone, iPod touch and iPad platforms. Copyright (C) 2011-2012 Francesco Chessari. All Rights Reserved. Apple, the Apple logo, iPhone, iPod and iPad are registered trademarks of Apple Inc. in the U.S. and/or other countries.
Francesco Chessari


Sunday, January 29, 2012

Stamp Collecting Can Be 'Profitable'

Boston, MA -- (SBWIRE) -- 01/25/2012 -- Stamp collecting is becoming increasingly popular as a money-making hobby and can actually prove profitable in these economic times, claims Alternative Asset Analysis (AAA).

The statement from the alternative investment advocacy group follows the announcement of solid profits at a UK-based stamp dealer, Stanley Gibbons. The firm expects its profits to rise to £5 million this year as a growing number of investors put their cash into tangible, alternative asset classes, such as stamps, antiques, art, wine, precious metals, real estate and timber.

The chief executive of Stanley Gibbons, Michael Hall, said, "We have had people calling up from all over the world saying they want to put £1m into stamps, asking us to advise them.”

AAA claims that the recent sale of the largest stamp collection in the world for some £20 million last year proves that there is money in stamps. “If anyone had any doubt, just look at Sir Humphrey Cripp’s collection,” stated AAA’s analysis partner, Anthony Johnson. “He bought the stamps in 1972 for just £29,000…now that’s a serious rate of return.”

Some of the rarest stamps are among the most valuable things on the planet, including the 1855 Treskilling Yellow, which weighs just 0.03 grams and is worth £5 million. Its rarity is based around the fact that its yellow colour was actually a mistake and it should actually have been green. Sir Humphrey’s collection also had a number of Penny Blue stamps, which are among the rarest in the stamp world.

Anthony Johnson explained that people are increasingly looking for alternative assets in which to invest, as a result of the volatility of traditional assets, and in particular stocks an shares.

AAA supports a range of alternative asset classes, not least forestry investment through firms like Greenwood Management, which specialises in forestry plantation investments in Brazil.

About Alternative Asset Analysis
The remit of Alternative Asset Analysis is to analyse and provide news on the global performance of a wide range of alternative asset classes including, but not restricted to, commodities, real estate, forestry, foreign exchange, hedge funds, private equity and venture capital.


Friday, January 27, 2012

Mid Michigan Stamp Club Meeting.

Tom Culver can attest to the fact that much can be learned from an avid philatelist.
Better known as stamp collectors, Culver said he has learned about global politics by what countries print on their stamps.
“You’ll know all the answers on ‘Jeopardy!’ if you collect stamps,” Culver said.
He has been attending the Mid Michigan Stamp Collecting meet-up for more than 50 years.
Tuesday at the Isabella County Commission on Aging, 2200 S. Lincoln St., three of the about seven members sifted through thousands of stamps Culver bought by the pound from a stamp dealer.

Two hours of sifting brought smiling faces, as stamps from the bags were bought for three cents each, and collections were sold for 10 percent of their face value.
Culver said although the Scott Standard Postage Stamp Catalog, often referred to as the philatelist’s bible, deem many stamps of miniscule value, he collects because of his love of the many varieties.
Each member took turns passing stamps to fellow philatelists to examine.
“Damaging the corners is like damaging a painting,” Culver said.
He said he first joined the group after moving to Mount Pleasant to work as a geologist for the DNR in the ’50s.
“The hobby is not what it used to be,” Culver said.
The three club members all wore prescription aviator glasses, which helped aid their searches through thick piles of stamps.
Richard Moreau said size and perforation are important components of what collectors seek.
Moreau recommended taking stamps off envelopes with water, but said special solvents are needed for more recent stamps, along with using special varieties of glue.
Moreau has been a club member for more than 10 years and has more than 15,000 stamps in his collection.
“Sometimes mint cents are worth more, and others were worth just enough to mail something,” Moreau said.
Some stamps are from fictitious countries made to turn a profit, while others indicate they are from specific places.
Randy Kursinsky traveled from Midland for the club’s monthly meeting, held at 7 p.m. on the third Tuesday of each month.
“I think there’s a gene you have to have to collect things, whether its jeans or salt and pepper shakers,” Kursinsky said.
Culver and Kursinsky admitted to having thousands upon thousands of stamps in their collections.
“Anything that appeals aesthetically, people collect,” Culver said. “But as you get older, you can’t keep everything,”


Jazz Great Miles Davis to Get Stamp in 2012

It’s been 20 years since legendary jazz artist Miles Davis passed away.  Now the music icon is being honored with his very own U.S. postal stamp.

Jazz Great Miles Davis to Get Stamp in 2012

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Stamp Collector Blogs & Web-Sites.

I'm going to start a blog roll / web-sites I visit on my side bar.
If you have a site that you wish to be added let me know.
Leave a comment below or e-mail me.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Dragon Stamps

China has just released a limited edition postage stamp for the Year of the dragon.
Demand for it has been red-hot, with resale prices increasing seven fold within the same day.
China Post said its a phenomenon never before seen in philatelic history.

Continue Reading; Click Here

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Danny Thomas gets a 'Forever' Stamp

Danny Thomas, the versatile entertainer who spent seven decades on radio, TV and film, will make a posthumous appearance on a "forever" postage stamp in honor of the 50th anniversary of St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, which he founded in 1962.

Continue Reading; Click Here

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Political Controversy Over Israeli Friendship Stamp

Israel's website reports, "A postage stamp is at the heart of a conflict between Israel and Gibraltar, a tiny British overseas territory on the straits connecting the Mediterranean and the Atlantic Ocean. The stamp slated to be released by both the postal services of Israel and Gibraltar, will apparently never find its way to any envelopes, after the Gibraltar’s postal service refused to approve its design for apparent political reasons"
 Read the entire article, click here.

Fearless Stamp Collectors

Pictures of Christchurch's lost churches and historic Sumner trams are on display at a special stamp and postcard exhibition this weekend.
The two-day Addington raceway show, which has free entry, marks the centenary of the Christchurch Philatelic Society - the second oldest stamp club in the country.

To read the entire article, click here.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Have Stamp Collectors Seen Better Days?

Here is an interesting article.
As I have written before I have collected Stamps since the mid-1970s. I lost touch with the hobby in the 1980s and found my way back to the hobby in the mid 1990s.

Postal service, stamp collectors have seen better days Click here

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Stamp Collector intro~

My name is Mark and I have been a Stamp Collector since 1975.
I mostly collect United States Postage Stamps, Plate Blocks, unused and used. (General Issue, Air Mail, Special Delivery, Postage Due, Federal Duck, Official, Parcel Post and Revenue)
I got into collecting FDC Issues, cachet covers and post cards in the early 80’s
I also have an extreme World Collection of stamps.
I mostly enjoy stamps that are from the time period of 1847-1951

I mostly buy stamps; however I do sell & Trade.

I also have a Yahoo Group Page & Facebook page,  not very active but I hope that will change as others join.
Mark Strait

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Collecting Bird Stamps

I ran across this article by Scott Shalaway.
A really nice read.
Stamp collectors count on birds of prey Click Here

Abbreviation Index for Stamp Collectors

MMH: Mint, Never Hinged; The stamp has never been hinged and has the original gum as issued by the PO
OG: Original Gum
LPOG: Large Part of Original Gum
POG: Part of Original Gum
GD: Original Gum Disturbance
NG: No Gum
NGAI: No Gum As Issued
Unused: A stamp that has no gum or is regummed
MVLH: Mint, Very Lightly Hinged
MLH: Mint Lightly Hinged
MH: Mint Hinged
U: Used
VF: Very Fine; selvage presence, plate or die varieties and scarcity.
VFU: Very Fine Used
HR: Hinge Remnant
MC: Mixed Condition (Faulty to Fine)
B.O.B.: Back of Book
S/S: Souvenir Sheet
PB: Plate Block
FDC: First Day Cover
SCV: Scott Catalog Value (US Dollars)
US: United States
WW: World Wide

Philatelic Terms for Stamp Collectors

Adhesive. In actuality, what a stamp is: a piece of paper which, by way of its gummed or pressure-sensitive back, pays for postage when applied to a piece of mail. With revenue stamps, the adhesive pays some kind of tax.

Airmail Stamps. Postage stamps used to pay the airmail postage rates. The U.S. stopped issuing airmails stamps in the 1970s when all mail began to be sent by air.

Approvals. Priced selections of stamps sent to collectors by dealers. Collectors pick what they want to buy, and return the selection to the dealer with payment.

Arrow. On many sheets of stamps, small arrow markings appear in the sheet margin. This was done to aid in the perforation process.

As Is. A term usually used by auctions to denote that a stamp is offered for sale without any guarantees.

Authentication Mark. A tiny mark that appears on many older and rare stamps. It denotes that an expert has examined and approved the stamp’s authenticity.

Backstamp. Postmark applied to the reverse of a cover (see below for "Covers") to indicate transit or receipt of mail. Oval backstamps are also used on registered mail.

Block. An unsevered even-numbered group of stamps; i.e., block of four, six, 12, etc.

Bogus. A fictitious stamp-like label created solely for sale to collectors. Such "bogus stamps" are not good for postage.

Cancel, Cancellation. A marking, usually a handstamp or postmark, that indicates a stamp has been used.

Catalog. Comprehensive listing of postage and revenue stamps, including current price valuations and illustrations.

Catalog Value. The value of a stamp given by a stamp catalog (i.e., Scott catalogue value, etc.). These valuations are not necessarily the prices at which the stamps can be purchased. Often, depending on condition, stamps can be purchased below catalog value (or above, if the condition of the stamp(s) warrant same).

Centering. The relative position of a stamp’s design in relation to the margins surrounding it. Centerin is a very important consideration in determining a stamp’s value.

Classic Stamp/Issues. An early issue, with connotation of rarity.

Coil. Stamps prepared in rolls (of from 100 to 1,000) for use in vending machines.

Commemorative. A stamp issued to honor some person, place or event.

Condition. The overall state of a stamp or cover as it relates to everything from condition of the gum (present or absent), centering, presence or absence of damage to a stamp/cover, etc.

Counterfeit. Any stamp or cover or cancellation created for the purposes of deception.

Cover. An envelope or piece of postal stationery (a postcard would also fall into this category)---and usually one that has gone through the mails. In earlier days (19th century), a cover would also refer to a folded letter that had gone through the mails.

Crease. Some kind of fold that indicates a weaking of the paper on a stamp or cover.

Cylinder. A printing plate used on a modern rotary printing press.

Definitive. A stamp issued for an indefinite period to pay a particular rate of postage. Also called "regular issues".

Denomination. The face value of a stamp.

Entire. An intact piece of postal stationery (i.e., envelopes on which the stamp has been printed).

Essay. Artwork of a proposed design for a stamp or piece of postal stationery. An essay must, in fact, be different in some way from the actual design of the issued stamp or stationery.

Expertization. The examination of a philatelic item by an acknowledged expert in order to see if the item is genuine. This generally means an experizing body such as the American Philatelic Expertizing Service.

Face Value. The value of a stamp as noted on its face.

Fake. Stamp or cover that has been altered in order to raise its value or appeal to a collector.

First Day Cover. An envelope bearing a stamp (and official first day of issue postmark) which has been cancelled on the first day the stamp was issued to the public.

Forgery. A fraudulent reproduction of a postage stamp or cover.

Frame. The outside area of a stamp’s design.

Freak. An abnormal stamp that has some kind of printing flaw---from overinking to perforation mistakes.

Grill. A waffle iron type of pattern impressed into some mid-19th century U.S. stamps to prevent such stamps from being washed and reused after their original use on mail.

Gum. The substance applied to the reverse of stamps to help them adhere to a mailing item.

Gutter. The selvage, with or without plate numbers or controls numbers/letters between the panes of a sheet of stamps.

Handstamp. Some form of cancellation or postal marking.

Hinge. A tiny piece of glassine-like paper, gummed, folded and then used to mount stamps into an album.

Imperforate. Stamps without perforations or separation device between then on a sheet.

Invert. A term used for stamps printed in two or more colors and which has the active area of one of the colors printed upside down. The most famous such invert is the U.S. 24-cent inverted "Jenny" airmail stamp of 1918.

Line pair. A line printed between a pair of coil stamps. Appears because of the guideline that is printed between panes on a sheet of stamps.

Lithography. Flat surface printing with a design area that is ink-receptive. The area that is not to print is ink-repellant.

Margin. The selvage surrounding the stamps on a sheet.

Meter Stamp. Government permit of various face value and printed by machine on a piece of adhesive paper (or on the actual envelope) to indicate postage paid. Invented by the Pitney-Bowes company in the early 1900s.

Miniature Sheet. A smaller than normal sheetlet of stamps issued only in that form or in addition to the normal full panes of stamps.

Mint. A stamp in the same condition as when it was issued and purchased at the post office. Original gum is on the reverse and the stamp has never been hinged into an album.

Mounts. Vinyl or plastic holders, clear on the front and with gum on the back. Stamps and philatelic items are placed inside the mount and them mounted into an album.

Multicolor. More than two colors.

Multiple. An unseparated group of stamps (two or more).

NH. Never Hinged.

Official. Stamp or stationery used to pay postage by a government agency.

Offset Printing. A printing process that transfers an inked image from a plate to a roller, the roller then applying the ink to the paper.

On Paper. Stamps, usually used, which have been used on mail and still adhere to all or part of that original piece of mail.

OG/Original Gum. The gummed surface on a stamp is the actual gum that was originally applied to that stamp.

Overprint. Any printing over the original design of a stamp. For instance, an overprint that upgrades or changes the value of a stamp.

Pair. Two unseparated stamps.

Pane. The unit into which a full sheet of stamps is divided before it is sold at a post office. Many U.S. stamps were printed in sheets of 400 and broken down into four panes of 100 stamps each before sale.

Penny Black. The world’s first postage stamp, the one-penny stamp issued by Great Britain in May 1840.

Perfins. Stamps punched with "perforated initials" or other designs and used generally by commercial firms in order to deter theft.

Perforation. The punching out of holes between stamps in order to aid in their separation. There are various kinds and sizes or perforations which are measured by a perforation gauge. Often, a particular size of perforation can differ on stamps that look very much alike. Different valuations can be the result.

Perforation Gauge. A metal, plastic or cardboard instrument used (easily) to measure the size of perforations (see above).

Philately. The collection and study of postage stamps and related items.

Photogravure. Modern printing process where stamps are printed through the photographic plate making process and through the use of chemicals.

Plate. The printing unit place on a press to print stamps.

Plate Block, or Plate Number Block. A block of stamps which includes the corner selvage from the pane and bearing plate numbers from the printing process.

PNC. Plate number coil.

Postage Dues. Stamps or markings that indicate an underpayment of postage.

Postal History. The study of postal markings, routes and rates of mail. And anything to do with the history of the mails.

Postmark. An official postal marking usually giving the date and origin or a piece of mail and is often part of the cancellation obliterating a stamp to prevent reuse.

Precancel. Stamp with a special cancellation or overprint and which was applied before the stamp is used on mail. This bypasses normal cancelling and saves much time when large numbers of mail are being used.

Proofs. Trial impressions from a die or printing plate that are made before the formal production of stamps. Such proofs are made to check defects in the plate work or design of the stamps.

Reprint. A stamp printed from its original plate after that stamp has ceased to be sold and postally used.

Revenues. Stamps usd for the prepayment of payment of various kinds of taxes.

Rouletting. The piercing of the paper between stamps (as opposed to perforations which are holds) that creates slits that aid in separating the stamps.

Selvage. The unprinted marginal area around the outer edges on a sheet or pane of stamps.

"Specimen". Stamp or stationery overprinted "Specimen" and distributed to member countries of the Universal Postal Union.

Tagging. The impregnation of phosphorescent dies into the paper used to print a stamp. When "read" by special Ultra Violet machines during mail processing, the phosphors determine the face value of the stamp(s) being used to pay postage.

Topical or Thematic. A stamp or piece of stationery showing a particular subject; i.e., horses, birds, pandas, automobiles, athletic events, etc.

Unused. An uncancelled stamp (as opposed to a mint stamp, see above), but one that has been hinged for mounting into an album. Such stamps can be either gummed or ungummed (the gum having been washed off).

Used. A stamp or stationery item that has been used for the purpose for which it was intended: usage on the mail. Such an item usually bears all or part of a cancel or obliteration device.

Variety. A variation from the standard form of a stamp. Varieties can include watermarks, different kinds of perforations, wrong colors or printing and production mistakes (overinking, missing colors, etc.)

Watermark. A machine-applied, deliberate thinning of paper during its manufacture, to produce a semi-transparent pattern or design of some kind.

This glossary of descriptions offers many of the most basic terms in philately. For a broader, more-detailed list of terms, see the American Philatelic Society website to learn how to obtain their inexpensive book, "Introduction to Stamp Collecting".