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Check me out using my new (old) Line-O-Scribe sign press to print posters for the 666th annual Scary Movie Party, an event I helped create that is going public baby! Yeah!
This method of printing is called “Use What You’ve Got” or as I like to describe all my printing, Quick and Dirty. I picked up the press that day, and using only what came with it (two interesting cabinets of drawers full of very worn lead and badly damaged wood type) plus some borrowed ink, we banged out a bunch of blurry, slimy glossy inked prints on coated paper. (My fellow printers, you can assume the challenge that posed, like grease on a banana.) Needless to say, they were a hit with the hipsters, as was the show.
The “new” Line-O-Scribe:
The forme. Because this is a galley height press,(I think, either that or the roller is REALLY shrunken) I had to substitute a cut apart cereal box for the underlayment to bring the forme to proper height. mmm Kashi.
And then, in real Quick and Dirty style, we inked it up three colors at once. Behold, the messiness:(Are you keeping track of the beer bottles? Its funny to watch them pile up. Scrimshaw was appropriate…)
And then, we print! First, because of the condition of the roller (don’t ask me how much this cost), I had to pack the forme to get an impression and to keep the filthy roller from marking the reverse of the prints. I used a piece of polyester felt Jessi had that seemed to work just right.
VIOLA! The first print!
And finally, the Artists Formerly Known as Sane People, Jessi and Jenny! Big round of applause for their mediocre production!
But we had fun. At least it looks like we had fun. I was so sleep deprived by the end of it I don’t really remember much of the printing. Ugh. Art hurts sometimes. :)
And not a word about the fact that its December 6 and I just now got around to posting about something I made in October. Shush!
Last weekend was the Amalgmated Printer’s Association Wayzgoose, also called the Playgoose, and the Iowayzgoose because it took place in Mt. Pleasant Iowa.
Mt. Pleasant is a middle-of-nowhere kind of town. Unmarked roads, faded vinyl siding, its not too much to see really. But they have the Midwest Old Threshers, a big fairgrounds with several buildings on it, all housing turn-of-the-century equipment for industry and farming, even a few exhibits on homestead technology from when the Pioneers settled and farmed Iowa and the surrounding region.
The Midwest Old Threshers is also home to a wonderland of giant steam powered machines, including a steam-powered electric generator from a mental hospital that generated its own power up until the 1960s:
A life-size Steam Locomotive Train on a 1.25 mile track around the grounds:
And even a Printer’s Hall with a steam powered printing press!
This year, the Annual Great Northern and Midwest Printer’s Fair ALSO coincided with the Annual APA Wayzgoose, making this event a double-your-fun, double-your-excitement weekend.
I camped out over the weekend, out by the trolley tracks (yes, they have a working trolley too!) and a lot of time exploring all the museums had to offer. Steve Alt, one of the volunteers there and an all around awesome guy (who not only prints on a 100 year old press powered by an antique gasoline engine, but also restores antique cars and engines), gave me a few great tours of the place. He took me into the boiler room and its his voice you hear in the first video explaining the mechanics of the generator. He also got me into the cab of the No. 9 and on the caboose for a ride around the track!
He let me print a few pieces on his Gordon Press for the APA print exchange bundle, which was so much fun! I used it powered by the engine, and also foot-treadled it manually. Its a fantastic little press!
The Swap Meet was great! There were a lot more vendors than last year, and a lot more people from the outside I think. I sold a good amount of things from Mr. Meers, and then put a lot of the rest into the auction. We made some good coin at the auction! I was very pleased. I ended up selling 75% of what I had lugged up there. Awesome!
I got to put a lot of faces to names, which was good too. Many people I’d “met” on printing forums or mailing lists, and never spoken to face to face. Now, I’m proud to actually be able to call them acquaintances. I got to rub elbows with of the fellows from the Hamilton Wood Type Museum, Jim Moran. We talked about workshops and events up in Two Rivers, Wisconsin. I hope I can make it out there in December for a presentation by Jim Sherraden of Hatch Show Print.
It was a really great weekend, and I can’t wait for next years Wayzgoose in Huntington, W. Virginia!
The what now? The Wayzgoose! Only the most important letterpress printing event of the year, duh.
If you are a letterpress printer, printmaker, graphic Designer, historian, tech geek, type geek, letterpress printer n00b or just curious about steam power, you NEED to be at the Old Thrasher’s Museum in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa September 17 – 19, 2009.
The Amalgamated Printer’s Association will hold its annual Wayzgoose event where you’ll meet other members, participate in demonstrations, work on your own prints, play with machines like a Heidelberg Windmill, an iron hand press (Like Gutenberg used!), a steam powered Babcock press, Linotypes, Ludlows, and bears OH MY!
Then, Saturday is a big old Swap Meet and Auction! Come get a new hand press to play with, buy type, supplies and all manner if nifty things you didn’t know your letterpress shop needed but you MUST have. I’ll be there selling as well! I’ve got lots of treasures, but I’m not telling you about them, its a surprise.
So get your lazy can off the computer and start planning your September events calendar!
After the proprietor’s card I made didn’t meet my standards of quality, (too bad I printed up 700 of them…), I decided to make a new business card in actual business card size. Opting for more of a calling card style, I printed up these simple and elegant business cards. I hope these convey a more relaxed and social message, like “Hey drop me a line anytime!” because I like being friendly.
The ink is a light grey with some silver metallic powder in, just for kicks. I used vintage coated linen finish black paper with a deckled edge.
The LKP monogram is made with Hollywood Initials, a new old stock in the box lead font. The other lead type is Franklin Gothic and an unidentified serif. Garamond I think.
I carry these around in my wallet, and when they are gone, i might even make more, because I do like them very much.
Another set of note cards available on Etsy!
Printed in crazy circus colors of blue and orange on vintage bright green paper, a maniacal clown bursts out of a paper ring and lets you know he doesn’t appreciate you stepping off the sidewalk…
The clown image was printed from an antique copper printer’s cut, or block. I thought it was just a clown until I pulled a test print and he was all screaming and pointing and… OLD. Weird.
Cards come in a set of four with 4 blue envelopes. Colophon has another creepy clown on the back of the card.
Now available for sale on Etsy.
Happiness Note Cards. Hand letterpressed using antique lead type and a Victorian woodcut. Soon to be the last prints of the cut, as it is very old and delicate and won’t stand up to being printed for much longer.
Set of four cards, blank inside, single fold with plain white envelopes.
A great birthday card, “I Love You” card, wedding congratulations or Baby Announcement! So many things bring us happiness, and this card can express it beautifully.
NOTE: I’m a dumb ass and my boyfriend just informed me i’ve been mixing my metaphors. Like booze and sleeping pills, it could be dangerous. The title of this post was supposed to refer to the phrase “Wet behind the ears” but I confused the saying with someone being “green” as in “new and young to something”. So alas a new phrase, “green behind the ears” is born meaning: to have not yet participated in one’s first ecologically conscious craft show…Well, I did my first big craft show! I’m so proud! It took a lot of work and preparation, and today, I chill out a bit and don’t really want to look at my press (my print pulling hand still has some blisters that need to heal, for reals).
The crowds were alright for the show. I don’t really know too much about what to expect this time of year, during that weather etc etc in regards to turn-out of attendees, but its seemed like there was a good flow of people.
I am a little disappointed in the amount of sales and such though. I’m pretty sure its not my fault (I Am good enough, people like me!), as a few other vendors where wondering where all the sales were too. But, really, I suppose we should have expected it in this economy…
One thing that really killed my sales was my table location. See, I picked a nice corner spot, thinking that I’d be right by the doors where everyone came in. I guess The Powers That Be decided those doors were Emergency Exits only, so instead the main entrance was at the exact opposite corner, putting my table at the end of the very last row. Unforeseen switch-a-roo there… BAH and FIE!
The other things that I hesitate to complain about because they were pretty awesome, were the Fashion Show, and the Bands. The Fashion Show went on for almost 2 hours, and while it was very cool and participants got their work show cased, it literally blocked off an entire aisle of vendors from any traffic at the busiest time of the day.
The last thing I’m going to have to keep an eye out for at other shows, is : Do Not choose a spot directly in front of the band stand. While I had a front row seat for several great acts including Raw Earth and Red Card Royale, it was hard to converse with customers, and I think a lot of shoppers avoided that corner because of how loud it was. Also, there were belly dancers that accompanied Raw Earth. They were EXCELLENT. I loved it! (One gorgeous woman even asked me to dance with her but I was so intimidated I couldn’t. She was too beautiful and I was unworthy…) But anyway, awesome as they were, it created a bottle neck in front of my table. Lots of people hovered to watch the dancers, but no one wanted to walk in the narrow space between us end cap vendors and the dancers.
I’ll hand in these observations as notes for next years Green with Indie.
All in all, for this show being the first show in the area of its kind to focus on sustainable goods, up-cycled art and craft items and be billed as a No Waste Event, it was a complete success! April Tate of Miss Lemon fame of the STLCM did an amazing job organizing the whole thing and booking the entertainment. (I don’t know when that woman sleeps.)
Webster U was gracious and we had no problems that I know of with the event being held in the gymnasium. Hooray! They’ll let us back next year?
I also got to meet some pretty kick ass fellow Craft Mafioso, like David from Cranky Yellow, Kate of Red Anvil Art (she traded me a necklace!!!), Katie from Scarlet Garnet, and Shelah of Destroyed by Design.
Next big shows coming up are the Big Ass Indie Art and Craft Show July 31 – August 2, and the Cherokee Street Cinco de Mayo Art Fair. Also, check out some of Lock and Key’s printed Ephemera for Sale at Cranky Yellow, on Cherokee Street at Nebraska in Saint Louis Missouri.
On the Press Now are some three color bookplates. I was looking over at (Oh so) Beautiful Paper and saw these Harry Potter book covers reimagined by M.S. Corley.
AMAZING! So I grabbed some of my old books down from the shelf, remembering how wonderfully some of my Science Fiction paperback book covers were designed. Then I set to work making these bookplates, that would look so beautiful pasted inside vintage books with Mid century designs.
Typography rules! I’ll post the third color and the complete plates when they are finished.
In order to complete my membership requirements for the Amalgamated Printer’s Association, I had to print up 155 copies of my proprietor’s card. It is like a business card, but in 3×5 format, I assume for the extinct Roladex…
Prop cards have to have your contact info, a bit of press info and exude your image. I’m pretty disappointed in how this card came out.
The type I have is old, and well-used, so finding crisp undamaged characters is difficult. The underline of “Lock and Key Press” is the only one I have, and it is nicked and dinged up in several places. I don’t mind that so much… My pretty pretty shadow font is so beat up, I can’t set more then five letters without one of them having a big old gash in it. Such is the nature of these utilitarian antiques, though.
I’m also disappointed in my lack of typographic skill here… I’m a great typographer, good with layout and have an eye for figure ground relationships. This arrangement of type on the left hand side bothers me. Its cramped, and dense. It looked good on proof, so I don’t know why I changed it, and didn’t pay any attention to how awful it looked.
But this is the 1stgen prop card, and will serve its purpose for now, but I will be redesigning and reprinting the whole thing because I don’t want this to represent me for long. I’d like to actually have my lock logo on the card, similar to my banner here and in my Etsy shop. I should know better than to make something like this. Ugh.