Update on the weekly open letterpress studio

March 6, 2011

During the weekly Saturday letterpress session, Bradley alum Nicole Blackburn printed a cover design for a 45 rpm vinyl record album of music by a local band. Vinyl records, like letterpress printing, is a resurgent technology. These letterpress sessions are part of a developing book arts program at Bradley that unites interests across a range of disciplines including graphic design, printmaking and writing.

Becky Krohe, from Converse Marketing, in Peoria, arrived and shared a carry-out order of saag paneer, along with a wonderful graphics magazine out of Canada (appropriately) named Uppercase.

Thanks to the expertise of Kevin McGuire, from OSP printing, we have been ramping up to do our own die cutting on premises. With Kevin's help we fabricated a cylinder jacket, removed inking rollers for safety, and did some die cutting using dies that Becky brought in. A clean cut through an envelope tantalizingly revealed a contrasting color insert. We have a Helmholtz bender for shaping cutting rule, and with few more gadgets and we will be able to fashion our own custom dies. Kevin also brought in a dozen vintage bank ad cuts (40's? 30?s) all about money. We proofed these. Maybe I will post that next week.

Wednesday night:  6-9 and also next Saturday morning the letterpress studio will be open. I will be spring-breaking in Tampa on the 14th to load a recently-purchased Vandercook Univeral-1 onto a truck and drive it back to Peoria. Tampa to Peoria - a piece of cake; first to second floor Heuser - that'll be the real challenge.

Yours truly

Robert Rowe
Professor, Graphic Design