Itella Posti Oy will release a stamp to mark the 65th birthday of the President of the Republic of Finland on August 23. The stamp was designed by Tapio Vapaasalo, professor emeritus at Aalto University.
According to Professor Vapaasalo, the aim was to design a stamp that emphasizes the value leadership of the President. "The selected style reflects Sauli Niinisto's personality and position in an identifiable way. The stamp prominently presents both the person and the position at the same time, but with the presidential elements dominant."
Traditionally, Finnish stamps featuring presidents have followed the tradition of portrait painting. Sauli Niinisto's stamp is based on a photograph taken by Pertti Nisonen. "Creative use of light is the visual foundation of the stamp. The many portrait photographs Nisonen has taken for corporate and high-quality publications seek authority in these ways. The way light is used in the form of a high-quality photograph creates a new culture in presidential stamps," Vapaasalo says.
The President is portrayed in profile in the stamp, which gives him an air of being above everyday matters. The expanded width of the horizontal stamp creates space in the photograph. "Its horizontal nature emphasizes logicality and consideration. The profile photograph, set loosely in the center of the stamp, creates contrast and emotion. The layout produces the depth required for the seriousness of the topic," Vapaasalo says, describing the outlines of stamp design.
A horizontal form also allows space for texts that do not interfere with the photograph,"yet elegantly offer the required information," Vapaasalo says. Presicent’s slogan Kaikki tyo on arvokasta – Allt arbete är värdefullt ("All work is valuable") is included on the sheet.
The simplified stamp is a stylish black and white. Tapio Vapaasalo wanted to avoid unnecessary pomp and highlight a republican mind-set in the design of the stamp. The printing technology used is complex and high quality. "In addition to two shades of black, the background of the stamp features matte printing and a metallic radiance underlies it all," Vapaasalo explains.
Heads of state are a traditional and popular subject for stamps all over the world. Stamps have been issued for every president of Finland.