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Earthscapes 2012 Foreverl Postage Stamps
 
The U.S. Postal Service celebrates the beauty and diversity of America's landscapes as seen from above with the Earthscapes (Forever®) stamps.

Offering an opportunity to see the world in a new way, the 15 stamps are issued in 3 rows of 5, showing 3 categories of earthscapes: natural, agricultural, and urban. The photographs were all created high above the planet's surface, either snapped by satellites orbiting the earth or by photographers in aircraft. The beautiful “earth art” images were chosen to showcase designs or patterns and geographic diversity so viewers can see the world in a new way and contemplate a much bigger picture.

- Natural (top row) - We fly over America's stunning wilderness. While a volcanic eruption scars the forests of Washington State, fog drifts over the timeless sandstone towers of Utah's Monument Valley. In Alaska, a wide stripe that looks like a highway is actually a glacier, an immense conveyer belt of ice. At its base, jagged white shards resembling broken glass are really icebergs, bobbing in a lake.

- Agricultural (center row) - They may look like abstract art, but they show 5 products being gathered, grown, or harvested: salt, timber, grain, cherries, and cranberries. Center-pivot irrigation systems create the beguiling play of geometric shapes in the middle stamp—although bystanders on the ground might see only sprinklers in fields of wheat, alfalfa, corn, and soybeans.

- Urban (bottom row) - Highways corkscrew around themselves and neat subdivisions sport tiny blue pools. It's our familiar world, shrunken into miniature—and seen with the new eyes that a fresh perspective can bring.

Art director Howard E. Paine designed this educational and visually rich pane of stamps.

The Earthscapes stamps are being issued as a Forever® stamps in self-adhesive sheets of 15. Forever stamps are always equal in value to the current First-Class Mail one-ounce rate.
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Earthscapes 2012 US Postage Stamps
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