Introduction: Harappan Valley Seal Stamps

Hi All,

Indus Valley art form emerged during the second half of the third millennium BCE (i.e. from 2500 BC onwards). Thousands of seals have been discovered by archaeologists from the Harappan sites. Most of the seals were made of steatite, which is a kind of soft stone. The standard Harappan seal was square in shape with a 2X2 dimension. It is believed that the seals were used for commercial purposes. A few seals were also carried as amulets, perhaps as a kind of identity card.

All the seals have pictures of animals with something written in a pictographic script (which is yet to be deciphered). Chiefly, the animals represented are tigers, elephants, bulls, bison, goats and so on. The most famous seal is the Pashupati Seal of Harappan civilization from Mohenjo Daro. It is a seal with a figure seated cross-legged in the center with animals around; an elephant and a tiger to the right of the figure and rhino and a buffalo to its left.

In this instructable, we will make a seal stamp using cardboard and thin foam..

Step 1: What Do We Need ?

  • 1mm foam sheet
  • Cardboard
  • Paper cutter
  • Pencil
  • Glue stick
  • Optional :carving set

Step 2: Design

  • Cut two 5 x 5 cm pieces of paper ( I wanted to make two)
  • Draw an animal of choice
  • Draw some symbols as shown
  • You can refer to the internet for inspiration
  • Note that the symbols may not be easy to cut

Step 3: Cutting

  • Stick the drawings on a thin foam sheet using gluestick
  • Using x-acto knife, mark the outline for the animal and the symbols
  • Peel the paper away and carve the animal and symbols as shown

Step 4: Stamp

  • Cut 3 to 4 pieces of cardboard ( 5cm x 5 cm)
  • Stack the cardboard pieces and stick them together, to make a block
  • Stick the cut foam sheet on it
  • Set aside to dry
  • You can choose to add few more details

Step 5: Stamping

Go mad with the stamps, give to your kid and stamp everything that belongs to you..

Use colors that can be washed away..

Hope you liked this instructable. Please share your comments and suggestions