Stamp News

Stamps for Charles M. Schulz, Webb space telescope, more added to 2022 U.S. program

The United States Postal Service announced on May 3USA Postage Stamps a number of additions to its 2022 U.S. stamp program. Specific issue dates for the stamps were not provided.

Charles M. Schulz. The birth centennial of beloved cartoonist Charles M. Schulz will be celebrated with 10 commemorative forever stamps picturing Charlie Brown and other memorable characters from his Peanuts cartoon strip. The stamps will be issued in a pane of 20 featuring a 1987 photograph of Schulz by Douglas Kirkland on a central label.

“Each [Peanuts] character reflects Schulz’s rich imagination and great humanity,” the Postal Service said in its press release for the new stamps.

“His resonant stories found humor in life’s painful realities including rejection, insecurity and unrequited love.”

Schulz drew and wrote almost 18,000 original Peanuts strips, the last of which was published the day after his death on Feb. 12, 2000.

A 2001 34¢ commemorative stamp (Scott 3507) celebrating Peanuts pictures Snoopy as the daring and intrepid World War I Flying Ace atop his doghouse that he imagined as a Sopwith Camel biplane.

In 2015, the USPS issued 10 stamps (Scott 5021-5030) to mark the 50th anniversary of the 1965 debut of the animated television special A Charlie Brown Christmas.

The forthcoming stamps honoring Schulz were designed by USPS art director Greg Breeding using Schulz’s artwork.

James Webb Space Telescope. A single commemorative stamp will celebrate the James Webb Space Telescope. Launched Dec. 25, 2021, the telescope is currently in orbit around the sun, some 1 million miles from Earth. “The image on the stamp is an artist’s digitally created depiction of the telescope against a dazzling starscape,” the Postal Service said.

According to the USPS, the pane selvage will feature a photograph of a star and distant space that the telescope took “early in its mission, brilliantly confirming the perfect alignment of the telescope’s 18 mirror segments.”

Existing art by James Vaughan and a NASA/Space Telescope Science Institute image were used by USPS art director Derry Noyes to design the stamp.

Snowy Beauty. Ten definitive forever stamps picturing flowers — camellia, winter aconite, crocus, hellebore, winterberry, pansy, plum blossom, grape hyacinth, daffodil and ranunculus — are to be issued in the fall in Guilford, Ind.

The Postal Service’s preliminary artwork for the Snow Beauty stamps suggests that they will be issued in double-sided panes of 20.

Noyes designed the Snow Beauty stamps using original oil paintings by Gregory Manchess.

Also to be issued in the fall will be several stamps devoted to holidays celebrated by people around the world.

Hanukkah. Also known as the Festival of Lights, Hanukkah will be celebrated with a single stamp picturing a decorative wall-hanging that depicts a hanukiah, a type of candelabra with nine candle holders. Eight candles are in a line, while the ninth is out of place. In contrast, a menorah features seven candle holders.

Jeanette Kuvin Oren’s fiber art “was hand-dyed, appliqued and quilted to form a colorful abstract image of a hanukiah,” the Postal Service said. Ethel Kessler served as the art director.

The Postal Service issued its first Hanukkah stamp (Scott 3118) in 1996. That stamp was designed by Hannah Smotrich.

Christmas. Virgin and Child, a 16th-century oil-on-panel painting by a Florentine artist, will be shown on this year’s Christmas stamp. The unnamed artist is known as the Master of the Scandicci Lamentation, the USPS said. The painting resides in the collection of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston.

“Imbued with a sense of dignity and grace, this stamp offers a traditional touch for cards and letters in a season of celebration, reflection and family,” the Postal Service said.

Kwanzaa. The design of the U.S. Kwanzaa stamp features “a girl and a boy dressed in robes akin to spiritual garments, with a kinara (candleholder) and seven lit candles (mishumaa saba) in front of them,” according to the Postal Service.

This stamp is the ninth U.S. issue to honor the holiday “with origins in ancient and modern first-harvest festivities from across the African continent,” the USPS said.

Postal Service art director Antonio Alacala designed the 2022 Kwanzaa stamp using original artwork by Erin Robinson. Synthia Saint James designed the first U.S. Kwanzaa stamp, a 32¢ special stamp (Scott 3175) issued in 1997.

Holiday Elves. Four holiday stamps in a se-tenant (side-by-side) block will picture a colorful illustration of cheerful elves “preparing toys on a winding conveyor belt in a snow-laden forest,” the USPS said.

“Like many beloved Christmas traditions — including Santa Claus himself — elves did not become a well-established part of the holidays in America until the 19th century,” according to the USPS.

Don Clark served as artist and designer of the Holiday Elves stamps. Clark’s artwork might be familiar to some Forever Stamp Store’s readers because it has appeared on gift cards and artwork on display at Target department stores.

Forever Stamp Store’s Stamp News will report further details about these stamps as they become available.

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