Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Low tech letterpress

In the thick of preparing for  a New York show, technology decided it didn't like me.
The main computer died spectacularly, and the phone, printer, oven, iPod and even my camera went haywire as well!

What's a girl to do?

Embrace it! 
Go low tech.

I pulled the type for Ben's wedding invitation and changed fonts seven times!

The equipment in letterpress printing is wonderful. 
Even the names are an alphabet soup...

quoins and quoin keys

brasses and coppers

furniture of all sizes

em quads, en quads, wide spacing, galleys...

You check the kerning by hand, lock up the form in the chase and then do the make ready.

Then serious printing.

Oh, the clink and the rolling sounds of the press!
Music to the ears...

Back in 1905 this cast iron beauty was born, solid and steady. 
Every gear and wheel is precision.

Built to last, not like modern technology.

A long afternoon of printing (or weeding the garden or baking with the children or hiking) is just the thing when unplugging is what you crave.
Never mind the thousand things you SHOULD be doing.

Sometimes unplugging is absolutely necessary.


Sara said...

Wow...that is amazing. Printing presses have always fascinated me...the setting of the type especially...all backwards. I remember learning about it all way back when, but never actually having the opportunity to try it out.

Anonymous said...

Would you look at that dirty smock! That girl's been WORKIN' IT!!

Hugs to you, my friend!!!! Hope all the tech issues get solved asap. But you saved the day! Isn't it great to have HANDS-ON stuff!

Love ya! Diane

jone hallmark said...

I adore you! Gosh, I want so much to come up and play on your press with you. Mom has offered me my dad's old press, but I have to have it shipped from Texas to New Mexico and then find someone to work on it.
I am with you on the "unplugging"... though I sit on my computer typing away at this note to you. Maybe I will sit and write you a note and send it Snail Mail...
.....back to basics.
Hope SURTEX goes well for you - I haven't been in ages.