I was excited to get back in the letterpress studio a couple weeks ago. This time, I was working on a calendar page for the annual Pyramid Atlantic Letterpress Calendar fundraiser. I was assigned my first choice month, which was June.
Ahh, June. Summertime at it’s freshest. Eliot was born on the first day of summer this year, which was June 21st. That inspired this design of a whole menagerie of hand-drawn summertime illustrations.
I initially drew the designs in black ink on printer paper. Then I scanned the page into photoshop and moved each illustration until I was happy with the arrangement. Then I taught myself to separate the design into layers so I could order two different plates for the two-color design. I’m sure it would have taken someone else far less time than it took me, but I feel so much better equipped to create new designs in the future!
I went to Pyramid armed with my plates, and then had to finalize my color choices. I have traditionally not been great at mixing ink to specific colors, but for this design I was really hoping for nice, bold yellow. I was so pleased when it printed just right.
A hundred and fifty pages later, I was ready to clean the press and mix my second color.
Last month a fellow printer showed me how she uses the Pantone formula guide for ink colors, even without a scale. I’ve followed in her footsteps and have been amazed by the accuracy! My dark navy blue took two colors of blue and a touch of black to come out right. And the colors always look so very different when on the press. It’s always a little bit of an adventure to see how they really print!
Here’s a look at the process of printing my second color:
The paper feeds into the press, is rolled around and over the inked polymer plate, and comes out perfectly! I was so happy with the dimension that the second color added to my hand-drawn images.
Done and done.
My June page is in some great company in this year’s calendar. Every month was designed and hand printed by one or two certified letterpress printer(s) from Pyramid Atlantic. The calendar features several different styles of printing, including hand set type, carved linoleum block, pressure printing, rainbow roll inking and even some handmade paper embellishment. It is a limited edition art calendar, and the proceeds from all of the sales go to further support Pyramid and it’s many programs.
For my work as a volunteer printer, I was given two copies of this year’s calendar.
I am going to keep and use one, and give one away.
And YOU my friend, may be the lucky recipient of that gift:)
To enter the 2012 letterpress calendar giveaway do the following:
1. Leave a comment on this post
2. Share which is your favorite month and why
3. Leave an email if your profile is private
For additional entries (leave separate comments for each):
1. Become a new follower or subscribe to One Little Minute
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(didn’t know there was one? Well, it’s new. I was getting around to sharing it:)
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4. Share this giveaway (or another favorite One Little Minute post) on YOUR Facebook page.
The letterpress calendar giveaway closes this Friday and the winner will be announced Monday, the 14th. Good luck!
I wish you all could win, but lucky for those of you who don’t the calendar is available for purchase HERE. It sold out super fast last year, so if you want one, don’t hesitate!