Capturing the frozen beauty of snow crystals


This year’s two sparkling Christmas stamps from Åland Post appear on 24 October. Through the versatile use of watercolour, Swedish artist and summer Ålander Anette Gustafsson has explored the magic of snow crystals.

Stamp artist Anette Gustafsson was pleased and excited to receive the commission to illustrate this year’s Christmas stamps on a snow crystal theme. However, the mission proved to be trickier than expected:

“I worked with the illustrations for many weeks and experienced a great challenge as I had to adapt my style to the expectations on the illustrations. I usually seek out my paintings, scrubbing for light and expression but, now, more contrast, colour, detail and an entirely different composition were required. In the end, I was very satisfied with my paintings!”

Delicate watercolour paintings are characteristic of Anette Gustafsson’s artistry. She describes her preference for watercolour as a way of expression:

“Watercolour is a divine musical material allowing playfulness in the process with a dash of surprise and spontaneity that I find enticing. I find myself in a nearly meditative state when I paint. I’m not tempted by the more exact or detailed painting, but I’m challenged by capturing the ambiance and light.”

This year’s Christmas stamps are Anette’s third stamp commission for Åland Post, and she has also designed the 2019 Christmas seals.

Date of issue24 October 2019
ArtistAnette Gustafsson
Editions150 000 & 80 000
DenominationsJulpost (€0.90) Världen (€1.80)
Price FDC€3.50
Stamp sizes36 x 25,5 mm
Sheet sizes2 x 20 stamps
Paper110 g/m²
Perforation13 per 2 cm
Printing method4-colour offset + UV coating
Printing houseCartor Security Printing