Tuesday, March 13, 2012


Over the years we have built up quite a big library of photographs of all things letterpress - the presses in action, ink being mixed, the finished beautiful products etc etc. Today I have been hunting through this library to find a very small handful of images which reflect us as a studio for an upcoming book which is to be published on letterpress.

I stumbled across this picture above which was taken back in 2010 and it reflects so much of what my life is like here in the studio. The photo was taken late at night still up working, I am analysing, scrutinising and being ridiculously pedantic analysing every little character of type in the envelope print. Ensuring it is perfect, beyond expectations and intricately beautiful. I am holding it gently, carefully, ever so delicately.

I've got ink splodges on my hands, wearing my trusty black and white striped print apron and standing right under Herbies Original Heidelberg arm. To the right of me would be my stone - A sturdy fabulous old vintage high table on wheels which was once used by the Courier Mail to move their locked up printing formes around the press room, back in the days of when the newspaper was composed with lead type. To the left of me would be our second stone which is painted a very fitting army green, which would be covered with inks being mixed, letterpress cabinets of more lead furniture, and our press wash which cleans down the press after a long printing day. Under this stone on a storage shelf is my collection of Heidelberg Rollers, and propped up next to this stone would be a few letterpress chases for other jobs in production.

On the floor would be a scattering of print off cuts, bits of packing papers,  quoin keys and lots of letterpress lead bits and bobs. Under neath the Heidelberg, their would be a pool of oil which seeps out of the press onto the oil plate. Scattered amongst this oil is the small little circular offcuts of paper which get popped out when we are die cutting the holes in our swing tags. They are making a strangely beautiful confetti mix to decorate the inky oil in which they finally rest. To the back of me would be Miss Ruby Tuesday watching, waiting and keeping me company, and over the whooshing of the press in action is music blasting from my iPhone propped up on a dock - something calm and gentle during our press ready stages and then something more up beat and rhythmic to beat in time with the press as it beats and chomps its way through the paper.

Yup, that's definitely my life here in the studio - Messy, inky and intricately beautiful.

1 comment:

  1. I am in awe of your work Alischa... I have been following your blog for a number of years now and continue to be inspired by your gorgeous posts. Your hard work and perseverance is certainly paying off - your paper goods are absolute perfection. Jackie x


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