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Over the 5 days, we will dive deep into what letterpress can do. Morning demonstrations of different techniques on the presses as well as time to design will lead into afternoon time on the press to print multiples of your cards. We will: explore debossing and pressure printing, working with handset type and vintage advertising cuts where you can cut your own lino block to match with type, and learn the basic process of photopolymer platemaking. Working on the two Vandercook presses and a new (to the studio) hand-cranked tabletop clamshell press, you can design and print multiple card sets. Select from a variety of papers and envelopes available or feel free to bring your own. Resources will be offered for further material exploration and how to dress up a plain envelope with a custom lining. Please come to class with some ideas for cards, but be open to explore new options. Bring any specialty papers/envelopes you like. Wear work clothes that you don’t mind getting ink stained. The later part of the class dealing with photopolymer plates uses basic adobe computer skills which are helpful, but not required.

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Instructor: Richard Reitz Smith

Richard Reitz Smith is the Book Arts Program Chair and Studio Manager at Maine Media. He is an artist trained as a graphic designer and excels in marrying traditional techniques with modern technology in the pursuit of all forms of book arts and letterpress printing.