It was back in late 2014 that I finally arrived in Dorrigo in NSW, Australia, and went to speak with the owner and printer of the last Australian newspaper printed letterpress – The Don Dorrigo Gazette and Guy Fawkes Advocate.
Some five years later and the paper continues under the remarkable stewardship of Michael English and his wife Jade.
I still receive the paper weekly by mail. Read their story here.
It’s that time of year again – time for the ‘famous‘ All About Lettering Quiz that comes without a Prize – just the quiet satisfaction that in correctly answering you, dear reader, know one hell of a lot about typography and the printing arts!
So, who is illustrated here and what is wrong with the image, according to one historian?
1 January: Thank you to all readers who took up the challenge. As most of you correctly identified this is a portrait of our man Gutenberg (or Guttemberg) and used as a frontispiece in Moxon’s Mechanick Exercises… It is believed to have come from an engraving made in 1584, though this shown is taken from a 17c painting that copied the 16c engraving. The painting was destroyed by fire in Strasbourg in 1870. What is wrong about it? Some authorities attest Gutenberg was beardless. [See Ruppel, A, 1947: Johannes Guteberg. Berlin.]
A wonderful day was experienced last week. Here is one comment:
‘What a wonderful, creative and inspiring day we had at the one day Inner Workshop run by John Pitt out at Mossgrove B&B – a perfect setting for such an occasion.
I would highly recommend this day for anyone interested in learning about sculpture and creative arts…the hands-on approach was great and John bought with him a wealth of talent and knowledge that he loved to share with all of us. I can’t wait for the next one.’
5 October 2015
For those who live in Australia, and more specifically Northern NSW, please note I will be running a one-day workshop The Inner Artist on 1 October 2015.
This workshop – being held at Dorrigo, home of the wonderful Don Dorrigo Gazette, the last newspaper still printed letterpress in Australia, (see here for post about the press) – is not about lettering (though no doubt that will crop up in conversation) but about connecting with your creative self.
I will start with some exercises to loosen your inner self, before moving on to introductory 3D work. The afternoon session will be devoted to carving a piece in soft stone.
If you’d like more information write to me through this page or email firstname.lastname@example.org. The cost is $120.
The workshop is being held at the delightful and peaceful gardens of Mossgrove B&B in North Dorrigo. Morning and afternoon tea provided – BYO lunch for a tranquil picnic in the lovely gardens of Mossgrove.
Looking through my collection of typography today I came across these images, included in Portfolio Three by The Rampant Lions Press, Cambridge, England, dated 1982. I have written about Will and Sebastian Carter many times throughout the life of this blog so please hit the search key to find out more, or send me an email. Enjoy your weekend. (This was a regular feature of the blog – the last entry can be found here.)
Hello again. It has been a while since the last post for which I offer no explanation except for life getting in the way of blogging. I thank all readers, regular and irregular, for continuing to step by on their way through the swamp that is the internet.
Recently, while at a local cafe, I came across this record sleeve (undated) among bric-a-brac for sale in a back room. I think it terrific. See how many typefaces you can identify. (Note – I have yet to play the record on my new Sherwood PM-9805 turntable.)
Making pictures from type goes back a long way – how long I can’t answer and I haven’t done the research but believe me it is a long time.
On the occasion of the wedding of Prince Charles and Lady Diana Frances (as she was then) on 29 July 1981 I and a colleague put together this offering – the additional inscription The only safe fast breeder is a Royal (in Times New Roman, letterpress) added when the pregnancy was announced in 1982 (Prince William was born on 21 June 1982) and alludes to concerns over nuclear reactors – 1982 was also the year the UK went to war with Argentina over the Falklands.
Now McDonald’s have caught on.
Though they may show promise – and are clearly done on computer – compare and contrast (as my English teacher at secondary school used to say to us) this 1953 effort by Dennis Collins of Queen Elizabeth II.
It comes from Typewriter Art, 1975, London Magazine Editions (another item to be added to your ever lengthening Christmas wish list). This piece was done on a typewriter and Collins notes: ‘The Queen’s portrait … [was] done on an old portable on which spaces could not be finely adjusted – this accounts for the horizontal white strips across the face…’ (For an earlier post on typewriter art see here.)
Collins (born 1912) was a notable cartoonist who did ‘The Perishers’ comic strip for the Daily Mirror from 1958 to 1983. If you know more about Collins please let me know.
Note – the lettering on the Charles and Diana card was done with Letraset.
Following my recent visit to Dorrigo (see here) and the last Australian newspaper still printed letterpress I have another discovery, and this time it is even closer to where I live, on the border between NSW and Queensland, Australia.
A news item in my local paper mentioned the Olive and Volcano press. The team of Jo and Andy print and publish a wide collection of letterpress. If you are in this part of the world do check them out.