The brilliant Pobjoy Stamps/Creative Direction has struck again. It's been a pretty disappointing year for Shakespeare commemorative stamps so far especially when we think back to the very dull Royal Mail set of 10 issued in April but now Pobjoy has given us something of what we might have hoped for - 4 gloriously colourful and humorous stamps from the Tristan Da Cunha postal administration which depict scenes from 4 of Shakespeare's plays illustrated marvellously by the incomparable Victor Ambrus.
The depicted plays are A Midsummer Night's Dream (Nick Bottom, ass-headed with Titania and Puck), Macbeth (the 3 witches), Hamlet (the drowned Ophelia) and The Merry Wives Of Windsor (Sir John Falstaff). The set will be issued on 4 July 2016 and was lithographed by BDT International Security Printers and perforated 14.
Ascension Island will also issue a similar set and details will be made public when the date of issue is confirmed. It would be lovely if similar stamps were to be released by the other territories which have been wise enough to be clients of Pobjoy - the subject would make a wonderful mini-omnibus issue with 37 plays available to be illustrated. Great stuff. Rating:- ****** (6 stars and nothing less).
The winter of our philatelic discontent has been made glorious stamp-collecting summer by this philatelic agency of Kingswood.
In the meantime the postal service of Ascension Island will issue a set of 6 stamps on 3 July 2016 to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the first short wave radio broadcasts from the BBC Atlantic Relay station which had been established on Ascension. The issue was designed by Robin Carter and lithographed by Cartor and perforated by 13.5. Rating:- *****.
Australia Post has announced a huge number of stamps and philatelic items which it plans to release over the next couple of months. Few of them commemorate an event or anniversary of note but are just random subjects which the planners of the country's stamp programme doubtless expect will find a an audience willing to empty its pockets in order to buy the stuff. To be fair, some of the designs are very attractive but this is just far too many stamp issues in such a short time period.
2 August 2016 - Olympic Games, Rio de Janeiro - 1 gummed stamp ($1). Designed by Simone Sakinofsky and lithographed by RA Print and perforated 14 x 14.5. Rating:- ***.
June 2016 - Awarding of London Olympics 50km Walk Gold Medal to Jared Tallent after the disqualification of the cheating Russian athlete Sergey Kirdyappin - 1 gummed stamp in a sheetlet of 10. Details awaited.
August 2016 - Australian gold medal winners at the Rio Olympic Games - 1 stamp in a sheetlet of 10 per medal winner.
5 July 2016 - Owls - 4 gummed stamps ($4), 1 gummed miniature sheet ($4), 1 prestige booklet ($16.95), 4 self-adhesive stamps (sold as booklet of 10 - cost $10). Total cost - $34.95c. Designed by Christopher Pope and lithographed by EgoTrade Pty. Ltd. and perforated 14 x 14.5. Rating:- ***.
26 July 2016 - 50th anniversary of the children's television programme Play School. 2 gummed stamps ($3), 1 gummed miniature sheet ($3), 1 self-adhesive $1 stamp (sold in booklets of 10 x $, total cost $10). Total price of issue - $16. Designed by Jonathan Chang and lithographed by RA Printing and perforated 14 x 14.5. Rating:- *.
16 August 2016 - "Fair Dinkum Alphabet" part 2 (no, I still have no idea what this issue is all about) - 5 gummed stamps and 5 self-adhesive stamps (sold as 5 different booklets each containing 10 x $1 stamps at a total cost of $50). Total cost of issue - $55. Designed by Gavin Ryan and lithographed by McKellar Renown and perforated 14.5 x 14. Rating:- 0.
- 2016 - "Films Of Marilyn Monroe" pack - sold for $18. Rating:- 0.
Other packs being released:-
- "Ghostbusters" stamp pack - sold for $18
- "Giggle and Hoot" stamp pack - sold for $18
- "Master Of Disguise (Undercover)" stamp pack - sold for $18.
Rating all:- 0.
The total face value of the stamps in each of the above packs is only $16 so each pack is sold at 112% of face value. Each pack contains 16 x $1 greetings stamps with attached labels - as illustrated the "Marilyn" pack contains the "heart" stamp, "Ghostbusters" and "Giggle and Hoot" contain the "Hand prints" stamp and "Master of Disguise" the "Wattle" design.
Issue inscribed "Christmas Island Australia" - 23 August 2016 - Shells - 4 gummed stamps. Designed by Roger Swanston and lithographed by RA Printing and perforated 14 x 14.5. Total face value $6. Rating :- **.
From the excellent issues of Pobjoy Stamps to ..... Stamperija. This week the agency has released what can be loosely termed as "philatelic items" with the name of Maldives printed on them - the usual 10 "sheetlets" each containing 4 different "stamps" with 10 accompanying "miniature sheets". The umbrella subject for these little gems is "Great Painters" and the feature artists are Johannes Vermeer, Vincent Van Gogh, Diego Velazquez , Pierre Auguste Renoir, Gustave Caillebotte, Salvador Dali, Peter Paul Rubens, Eugene Boudin, Francisco Goya and Pablo Picasso. The stated "date of issue" of these products is 3 February 2016. Rating:- 0.