The assignment was to create stamp designs for the U.S. Postal Service to celebrate the influence of Central and South American, Mexican, and Caribbean foods and flavors on American cuisine.
The art director and designer chose six dishes from an array of Latin American culinary traditions to illustrate with a vernacular style. The artist applied multiple layers of acrylic paint to his illustration boards, using sandpaper to reveal the hidden layers and give each design a worn, vintage look. Through a specialized stencil process, he added the details for each dish to the textured backgrounds. The lively hand-lettering complemented the celebratory message.
The stamps enhanced the diversity of the U. S. stamp program and were very well received. Within eight months, over 100 million stamps had sold.
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