New Rate Definitives - Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

December 20, 2004

In deep midwinter, it's nice to be reminded that there's a lot more to this country than ice and snow. Canada's colour palette is bright and bold, vast and varied, and it's always changing with the seasons. For the 2005 postal rate change, Canada Post has released vibrant new definitive stamps in three designs that each take their colour cues from nature in all her exuberance.


Even when printed in cool, wintry colours, her warm smile charms us still. Elizabeth II, Canada's head of state, appears on a new domestic rate (50¢) definitive in the same portrait as last year, based on a photograph taken by the Canadian rock musician Bryan Adams. In a quick, five-minute photo opportunity outside Buckingham Palace during the Queen's Golden Jubilee year, Adams took this informal portrait that captures, as he says, "a glimpse of the real person."

This year, the Queen appears in shades of slate blue, chosen as a deliberate contrast to last year's rose-brown, to ensure the stamps can be easily distinguished. "The challenge with this stamp was to create a colour distinction from last year, but in shades respectful of the Queen's image," says Danard. "Adams took the original photograph in black and white, so we tinted towards those tones with the blues."

Although the final image is monochromatic, it was printed with six -different colours. "This was done partly as a security measure," Danard says, "but also to produce depth and a more subtle tonal range in the image."

Booklet of 10 stamps

Booklet of 10 stamps


  • Product #: 111165
  • Denomination: 1 x 50¢
  • Design: Gottschalk+Ash International
  • Dimensions: 20 mm x 24 mm (vertical)
  • Printer: Canadian Bank Note
  • Printing Process: Lithography in 6 colours
  • Quantity: Continuous printing
  • Gum Type: Pressure sensitive
  • Perforations: Kiss cut
  • Tagging: Tagging
  • Photography: Bryan Adams
  • Paper Type: Tullis Russell Coatings
  • OFDC Cancellation Location: Ottawa, Ontario
Official First Day Cover

Official First Day Cover


  • Product #: 411165130
  • OFDC Cancellation Location: Ottawa, Ontario