No polymer plates here. All type for text is set by hand from a collection of antique and recently cast metal type spanning two centuries of old fashioned typography.
Because of the age and rarity of the type, I do not run heavy impression on any paper stock. Thus I don't do embossing or debossing with type.
I print on one of four antique cast iron presses, one of which was made in 1876. All paper is handfed and all folding and collating is done by hand.
A complete hands-on process from start to finish.
This is printing like my father did it. Everything I do I learned from him and the decades of experience that I have had since he left us. You won't find a Vandercook cylinder press. This is a platen press shop.
I set type by hand in a composing stick from a collection of metal type & a small amount of battered old wood type.
All artwork is either recently made zinc or magnesium plates or linoleum block carvings from my father's or mother's hand or ones that I have made myself.
Real letterpress the way it was in the 1800s and the 1900s.
Since I work alone, I work slow and usually only have one or two projects in the schedule at a time. I do not rush and I do not run rush jobs.
Only one press has a motor.
All the other presses run either by treadle power (and I do get my exercise there) or by hand-pulled levers.
This kind of work takes time. If you're interested in getting a job done, plan ahead, please.
Please also note: I do teach workshops and I also teach at the Book Arts Collaborative in Muncie, Indiana.
Everybody needs a drink coaster. The question then becomes one of what the heck the coaster is supposed to do, other than soak up spilled beer.
Some of my coasters are obviously political. Others are simple warnings about the cat and similar silliness for parties and other gatherings.
Please visit my Etsy store
Dad used to print Christmas cards every year in July, for the previous year.
I try to be a bit more up on it and get most of my Christmas and Solstice cards printed before the first snow flies.
I also print covers and hand bind battery-free, solar powered journals and notebooks.
Please visit my Etsy store
I enjoy teaching introductory printing workshops, if only because I get to interact with folks (as opposed to keeping the cat hair out of the ink) and pass on the joy of making things appear on paper with ink and type.
I teach these workshops for people who are seriously interested in learning how to work letterpress correctly, following a 500-year-old tradition as I learned it. Only hand operated presses are used for these workshops and participants are asked to come prepared with an idea that they want to see in print. Business cards, greeting cards & similar personal items are perfect projects for a workshop setting.
Because the shop is small and cramped, I prefer one-on-one sessions, with two participants being the most that can work in the shop at one time.
Please note that the shop has a full-time shop cat and people with cat allergies should be completely aware of this before considering getting involved.
Contact me to schedule a personalized letterpress training session.
Folks also often ask me about business cards, which, while expensive compared with the online quick print shops, are a nice break from the usual stuff I do. And then there are amateur radio QSL cards, which I have done occasionally. They usually end up being more fun than recompense.
Some folks are interested in special design, old-fashion typography for wedding invitations or personal note cards. These are also fun jobs for me and I do enjoy the chance to dream up and print interesting designs for folks.
Contact me about your job printing plans.
I do a small amount of graphic design on the computer for those who are interested in antique typography in a non-letterpress format. I have a collection of old-fashion fonts on the machine as well as a small number of digital-sourced old fasion borders & illustrations.
Contact me about your digital graphic design needs.
One old man and his cat
Compositor, Pressman, Floor Sweeper, Workshop Teacher
Rule Enforcing Nap Taker, Distributor of Cat Fur