City Lifestyle

Want to start a publication?

Learn More

Featured Article

Faces Of Franklin

U.S. Postal Service Forever Stamp Artist Elizabeth Brandon

Article by Karen Creason

Photography by Provided

Originally published in Franklin Lifestyle

When asked how her floral paintings ended up on United States postage stamps, Franklin resident Elizabeth Brandon chuckles, “It’s a mystery.” Receiving national attention for her long-standing association with Cook's Illustrated magazine, for whom she created covers for years, and stationery company, teNeues, who produced cards featuring those covers, may have played a part but Elizabeth shrugs and says, “I still don’t really know how it happened.”

One ordinary day, Elizabeth received an email that caught her attention: 'This is the U.S. Postal Service.' “At first, I didn't take it seriously. I often receive inquiries, but the next morning when I showed the email to my husband, it sank in. It was real!”

A string of emails followed, revealing the U.S. Postal Service's interest in considering four of Elizabeth’s floral paintings for forever stamps. “I just posted the paintings of those florals, picked from my aunt’s garden in Nashville, to my website,” says Elizabeth. Excitement mingled with disbelief as she learned more details.

However, there was an unusual stipulation - she was forbidden from discussing the project with anyone. For a year, Elizabeth could only imagine the progress being made behind the scenes. Elizabeth finally received the notification she had been waiting for - The First Day of Issue ceremony was to be held on August 15, 2017, in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. 

"Flowers From The Garden," is a set of four forever stamps featuring Elizabeth's paintings of red camellias and yellow forsythia, white peonies and pink tree peonies, an arrangement of white hydrangeas, white and pink roses, green hypericum berries, and purple lisianthus, and blue hydrangeas in a blue pot.

Reflecting on the remarkable journey from canvas to a nationwide symbol, Elizabeth proudly declares, “To see my artwork transformed into 600 million stamps was an incredible honor.”

  • Elizabeth Brandon, second from left