Introduction to Letterpress Printing, July 27–31

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Monday - Friday, 9 AM to Noon
July 27th – 31st
$280 + $20 materials fee

Have you ever wanted to print your own personalized stationery? Are you engaged and in need of some seriously beautiful invitations? Have you ever been interested in working on beautiful printing presses dating back to as early as the 1880s? If so, Introduction to Letterpress Printing is the perfect class for you! This one-week class will teach the basics of letterpress printing: from composing type to mixing ink, as well as press set-up and printing on the Chandler & Price platen and Vandercook presses. The class will begin by creating personalized stationery. Students will then complete various other projects according to their own interests. Examples include greeting cards, business cards, poetry broadsides, fine art and wedding invitation suites. Ink is provided by the studio. Students supply their own paper and envelopes, which may be purchased at Smokey Road Press. No previous experience is necessary. 8 spots available.

About the instructor: Margot Ecke is the owner of Smokey Road Press, a design, letterpress and bookbinding studio in Athens, Georgia. She received her MFA from the Rhode Island School of Design and her BFA from Cornell University. She received a Professional Printing Certificate from the Tamarind Institute at the University of New Mexico and completed her training by earning her Diploma in Bookbinding at the North Bennett Street School in Boston. Margot was the Victor Hammer Fellow in the Book Arts at Wells College in Aurora, New York from 2004-2006, where she interned at the Press and Letterfoundry of Michael and Winifred Bixler. She has taught workshops at the Penland School of Crafts, the Atlanta Printmakers Studio, the North Bennet Street School and the Ink Shop. She was an Assistant Professor of Book Arts and Printmaking at the University of Georgia from 2006-2009. Her work is exhibited both nationally and internationally.

About the technique: Letterpress printing is a traditional relief printmaking technique. Invented by Johannes Gutenberg to print his famous Bible, letterpress remained the primary method of printing books from the mid- 15th century until the middle of the 20th century. With this technique, a matrix (metal type, wood type, wood blocks or polymer plates) are inked and pressed into the paper, leaving a beautiful impression in the surface of the page. Letterpress is well suited to writers, designers, artists, stationery enthusiasts and folks who like working on old, beautiful machines.

About the press: Smokey Road Press is located in the Leather’s Building, just two blocks from beautiful downtown Athens, Georgia. Housed in a former sheet metal fabrication warehouse that has been recently and lovingly renovated, the press offers a fully equipped bindery and letterpress shop. We hold classes in letterpress printing, bookbinding and calligraphy. We also have a retail shop, which sells printed cards, hand-bound books and artwork as well as materials and tools needed for working with paper. The press has 2 large Heidelberg Windmills, 5 Chandler and Price presses, a Charles Brand etching press, and 3 Vandercooks. Our bindery is equipped with a guillotine, a Kutrimmer board shear, a variety of book presses, a Rosback perforator and a large iron standing press.

Is this a gift? Let us know and we will send you a gift certificate to give to your special someone!