Sunday, July 31, 2016

Letterpress practice

As part of my letterpress discoveries and play I have bean very well supported by a bunch of letterpress printers in New Zealand. When I renewed my subscription this year I was asked if I would like to contribute to their small booklet Vinculum.

Vinculum is a nice, small booklet which allow individual letterpress printers to print a page and have it included.

I figured it was about time I tried to do a small print run of something, so I agreed and have just printed my page.

I needed to print 100 A5 pages and chose some words of my own for the front page and printed information about my press on the back.


So on Tuesday and Wednesday I played around with type and paper, getting things ready; and on Thursday I printed the front page. Or should I say 120 front pages (I needed some spares for mistakes and to share).



It was all good fun and went really well, until page 112 I think when I tried to rescue a page from slipping and got my fingers caught in the press. It was like slow motion and I was thinking as the press came up closer that it would run out of steam like it had every other time that day, but it didn't, and it made a fair effort at crushing my fingers

The good news is that it didn't, but it definitely dented them and broke the skin. I finished the last eight pages and then headed off to do my first aid - lots of ice on and off, arnica and pain relief, followed by Barry wrapping my fingers in a comfrey (the old herb 'knit-bone') poultice overnight.

Thankfully I am all OK; bruised and battered and a bit shy of putting my fingers in there again!

On Friday I got back on the horse and printed the back page and left 120 pages to dry.   My first proof showed me that an "I" had snuck into my "1" drawer and so I had to replace it, which I did and the white page printed properly.



And then it was onto the back pages...



This isn't the piece that did the damage - but it was an earlier mistake which I rescued without damaging myself.


Next job to sort, pack and post to NZ!

8 comments:

  1. The thought of producing an edition of so many and double sided leaves me in awe. I realy like the visual stutter in the last image.

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    1. It worked out better than I thought it might Jac - and I enjoyed the satisfaction of production. I had to keep the last page - its gorgeous isn't it?!? Go well.

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  2. eeek! Madeleine at Artsite Gallery here in Camperdown has a full tray of letterpress type, are you interested?

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    1. Thanks Mo - yes we shall discover more!

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  3. what fun (except for the squashed fingers of course!)

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    1. It was a nice easy one to start with Ronnie - and yes the squashed fingers are a bit of a drag. but a very good lesson to be learned!

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  4. Ouch!!! I can see that slow motion action replay in my mind as I read about it happening. Your poor fingers Fiona. Hoping there is no lasting damage as all your efforts look so worthwhile.

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    1. They are still sore Lesley a week down the track; but I have learned my lesson well I hope! I am keen to get back and do some more so that is good - go well.

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