Learning to Letterpress.
I mentioned last week that I took a beginner’s letterpress class at the Irvine Fine Arts Center with my friend Rosie. We met every Monday for five weeks and learned not only how to letterpress, but the history behind printmaking (did you know that J & U were originally not part of the alphabet?!), how to mix inks, and the differences between the letterpress machines.
We picked out metal type from these font style & size trays…
Arranged the type the way we wanted them to be seen on paper…
And printed our very own greeting cards with metal movable type.
Printed customized business cards using polymer plates.
And hand-printed backgrounds, carved out stamp images, and letterpressed wood blocks for a quote book we put together as a class: “Before printing was discovered, a century was equal to a thousand years.” -Thoreau.
Needless to say, I came away from the class with immense respect and appreciation for all the letterpress artists out there. Letterpress is to digital printing as painting is to using the Paint program on a PC. There’s just no comparison.
Loved this class so much & am keeping my eye out for more goodies at the center this coming year… maybe book-binding?! If there are classes offered in your area, I highly recommend it!