- This talk about what it takes (on all levels) to get involved with
letterpress is fascinating, if a bit sobering. I have to say I admire Jan's
comebacks in the midst of this barrage of "wake up and smell the coffee"
talk. What intrigues me about all this is how it relates to my current book
project, "A Letterpress Odyssey," (I'm trying to figure out a way to get
some of this talk into the book (names excluded, of course); would any of
you mind ??) which is about a few representative samples of those of us who
have followed our bliss to letterpress, despite all the logic to the
contrary. As Gray Zeitz, one of our subjects and the owner of Larkspur Press
in Kentucky, put it, "letterpress is addicting." We do it because, as most
of us would admit in our heart of hearts, this is what we were put on the
earth to do. (I say the same thing about book arts, another of the least
lucrative art forms...) I have trouble explaining my calling to my non-
printer friends. ("Let's see, you were put on the earth to set type letter
by letter because you did WHAT in a previous lifetime?")
Jan, all this feels like cold water being thrown in your face, but the truth
is that we all understand the bug that you have, and we support you. Instead
of more cold water, I have the best idea yet: I'll move to Santa Barbara and
set up shop with you! I'll bring the Vandercooks if you bring the
Heidelberg! Maybe we won't do greeting cards, if that market is saturated
and requires swimming with the sharks. Maybe we'll do explore other untapped
markets (I won't give away all my secrets right now...) Maybe we'll get a
photocopier and put up a sign that says "Kinkos" in front and keep this
stuff in the back room...
Ars Brevis Press
- Katie, great idea, lets set up shop here in SB and we
can swim with the dolphins, they are suppose to be
good shark repellent.
But seriously, I think I will take everyone's advice:
I will call it a hobby, like Mark says, and just print
for awhile, have fun, and see what comes of it. I will
probably buy a Vandercook, as Gerald says, I will go
to the show in New York next May to see what others
are doing. And by the way James, thanks for explaining
price point, I suspected it was the price the market
will bear. And I wondered if 50% discount is what
The part of learning the letterpress I need to slow
down on is the business end. That and purchasing a
press that is too big and scary to be fun anymore.
I'm not dampened, I'm inspired, and I feel better
about my level of committment. Thank you for all of
your input. I'm really glad I asked. Plus I enjoyed
our philosophy 101 class. Its good to get back to the
basics sometimes. I hope Katie can use some of it in
her book. Now I have to get back to work on my danged
computer and make some money so I can afford my new
> > Jan, all this feels like cold water being thrownin
> your face, but the truth__________________________________
> is that we all understand the bug that you have, and
> we support you. Instead
> of more cold water, I have the best idea yet: I'll
> move to Santa Barbara and
> set up shop with you! I'll bring the Vandercooks if
> you bring the
> Heidelberg! Maybe we won't do greeting cards, if
> that market is saturated
> and requires swimming with the sharks. Maybe we'll
> do explore other untapped
> markets (I won't give away all my secrets right
> now...) Maybe we'll get a
> photocopier and put up a sign that says "Kinkos" in
> front and keep this
> stuff in the back room...
> Katie Harper
> Ars Brevis Press
> Cincinnati, OH
Do you Yahoo!?
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>Jan, all this feels like cold water being thrown in your face, but the truthWith Independence Day weekend almost upon us, may I remind all
>is that we all understand the bug that you have, and we support you.
concerned that a squirt bottle of cold water is an indispensable
accessory to anyone grilling with wood chips or charcoal? An
occasional spritz helps control overheating, allows your fuel to last
longer, and yields a smoky, more flavorful meal.
In advising caution, James and Fritz and I are only trying to make
your letterpress experience as succulent as possible.
Indian Hill Press