Guided by Jessica Spring, dive into the world of letterpress printing, pushing the boundaries of traditional techniques and exploring innovative approaches to create unique impressions that blend craftsmanship with artistic daring.
Sep 30, 2024 - Oct 4, 2024
Workshop Fee: $1595
Workshop Duration: 1-week (Monday-Friday)
Workshop Location: On-campus
Class Size: 8
In this intensive letterpress printing workshop, students will focus on typesetting and printing techniques that move beyond straight lines and right angles to set type that curves, angles and bounces. We’ll begin by exploring historic methods and tools for handset typographic composition including circular and angle quads. Because these tools have become increasingly difficult to find, we’ll adapt materials from art supply and hardware stores for manipulating type and creating dynamic lock-ups on both platen and cylinder presses. We will also experiment with Daredevil Furniture, sets of laser-cut furniture designed for composing type.
While our primary focus is daredevil typesetting, we’ll also explore innovative approaches to pattern and texture utilizing ornaments and found objects. Intriguing surfaces can be created from flat materials, with floods of color and texture more commonly utilized in methods of printmaking beyond letterpress printing. Similarly, found materials can be an ideal substrate for printing on, either as an alternative to traditional printmaking papers, or an element of collage.
Students will create a collaborative sample book of techniques and a set of editioned prints to exchange. This workshop is appropriate for those with some letterpress printing experience who want to expand their approach to typesetting and printing, but all levels are welcome.
All images by Jessica Spring.
Instructor: Jessica Spring
Jessica Spring began her interest in typesetting and printing as a phototypesetter in the 1980s. Her introduction to letterpress printing paralleled the birth of desktop publishing: an exciting time to explore graphic arts. She has been a letterpress printer ever since, most recently inventing Daredevil Furniture to help other printers set type in circles, curves and angles. Her work at Springtide Press—artist books, broadsides and ephemera where typography plays a central role—is included in collections around the country and abroad. She has collaborated on the Dead Feminists broadside series since 2008 and co-authored Dead Feminists: Historic Heroines in Living Color. Spring has an MFA from Columbia College Chicago and teaches letterpress printing and book arts.