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ABOUT LETTERPRESS PRINTING
For those unfamiliar with the process, letter press printing involves paper being rolled over a stamp to make a print rather than the modern method of using a flat plate. The letter press process is much more expensive and time consuming than modern ones, but it allows for truly stunning results when used properly by employing the color, grain, and weight of the paper as a design element.
To read more about its history click here
After 500 years, letterpress printing is still going strong. The impression the type and relief blocks make in the paper is tactile and beautiful, giving letterpress work a textured look and feel. Here at Blackbird, we use a Chandler & Price "Old Series," which is a platen letterpress (circa 1904). Platen presses were used to print almost everything for the first 400 years that printing presses existed. It works by putting two flat surfaces together; one surface holds the paper, and the other surface holds the type and the images. When the inked surface holding the type and images presses against the paper, it produces a graphic representation.
The letterpress printing process is broken down here into a few essential steps. Any original artwork desired for the print must be created prior to setting up the press. This includes drawing an image, transferring it to wood or other suitable materials, and cutting away the negative space to create a "relief" of the image. Additionally, large sheets of paper are torn or cut down to the desired size of the final printed piece. And the printing process begins...
To read more about the process step by step click here