Joel Felix

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Pressing Letters

Yesterday I went on an adventure into the world of Letterpress printing at the San Francisco Center for the Book, where I gained a deeper appreciation for a dying art and the amount of patience and meticulous attention detail necessary to make a beautiful print. Accompanied by Kyle Marks, we approached the foreign process with a gung-ho attitude, rolled up our sleves and dived right in.

As designers we were familar with many of the typographic terms such as "Leading" and "Kerning," and we were totally geeking out at all the different typefaces they had to choose from. Our weapon of choice for the evening was 18pt Bodoni Ultra which was paired with a sans-serif wood type and lino-block triangle pattern that one of the students of the SFCB had already produced. Our assignment was to finish the phrase "You are..." with our own hand-set type. While the other students were being serious and cliche with prhases like "You are...Radiant & Beautiful" Kyle and I had our own interpretaion of the assignment.

Mine reads

"You Are the cheese to my macaroni."

while Kyle's read

"You Are the butter to my biscuit."

You can view a short little video of I shot here showing the printing process of the lino-block. It was a great experience and if they offered anything like this in the Sacramento area I would defintely be there more often. If your interested in learning about letterpress printing I would recommend visiting SFCB and taking a class. At a mere $40 you can get your feet wet in letterpress printing. They also have opportunities to get certified and even come and do your own thing during open studio hours. Sounds like a good deal to me.

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