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99% Invisible #47- US Postal Service Stamps (Standard 4:30 version)

From: Roman Mars
Series: 99% Invisible (Standard Length)
Length: 04:30

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They are NOT tiny paintings. Read the full description.

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[For Director's Cut, go to: http://www.prx.org/pieces/89166-99-invisible-47-us-postal-service-stamps-direc]

Stamps design takes, on average, a year to a year and a half, from conception to execution. Unfortunately, most of the stamps we encounter on a day-to-day basis are the rather predictable flag, bell, and love stamps, but there are some really fantastic commemorative stamps, which are supremely functional and affordable tiny works of art.

To determine what should go on a US stamp, the Citizens Stamp Advisory Committee combs through nearly 50,000 suggestions per year offered by the general public. Once the subjects are chosen and approved by the Postmaster General, they are assigned to a handful of art directors to be designed.

There are loads guidelines to help stamp subject selection, but one of the big rules recently changed. In 2012, the first living person will be commemorated on an official USPS stamp.

Also in the 99% Invisible (Standard Length) series

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An artist draws New York. And vice versa.
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99% Invisible #85- A Noble Effort (Standard 4:30 version) (04:30)
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The man behind the background.
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99% Invisible #83- Heyoon (Standard 4:30 Version) (04:30)
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99% Invisible #80- An Architect's Code (Standard 4:30 Version) (04:29)
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99% Invisible #77- Game Changer (Standard 4:30 Version) (04:30)
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99% Invisible #75- Secret Stairs (04:29)
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Wherever there is sufficient demand to move between two points of differing elevation, there are stairs.

Piece Description

[For Director's Cut, go to: http://www.prx.org/pieces/89166-99-invisible-47-us-postal-service-stamps-direc]

Stamps design takes, on average, a year to a year and a half, from conception to execution. Unfortunately, most of the stamps we encounter on a day-to-day basis are the rather predictable flag, bell, and love stamps, but there are some really fantastic commemorative stamps, which are supremely functional and affordable tiny works of art.

To determine what should go on a US stamp, the Citizens Stamp Advisory Committee combs through nearly 50,000 suggestions per year offered by the general public. Once the subjects are chosen and approved by the Postmaster General, they are assigned to a handful of art directors to be designed.

There are loads guidelines to help stamp subject selection, but one of the big rules recently changed. In 2012, the first living person will be commemorated on an official USPS stamp.