A guest post from our new sponsor and long time friend from my college a cappella group (think the Sing-Off), Cindy Lin:
Hi Eagle's Nest readers!
I'm Cynthia Lin, of LUCKY 8 LETTERPRESS, and I'm jumping in today to guest-post a little Q&A about letterpress printing. I invite you to check out the Lucky8 Etsy shop - use coupon code "EAGLESNEST" and get free US shipping through the end of the year!
Q: How did you get into letterpress?
A: I got into letterpress through another artistic pursuit - I'm also a singer-songwriter. (Fun fact for readers - Jess and I were in an a cappella group together in college!) My first album was professionally manufactured - for my second album, I wanted something more personal, and I loved the idea of using recycled packaging and printing CD cases myself. A friend introduced me to the idea of letterpress, and I found a studio in Brooklyn where I could learn to print and rent a press. It was such a thrill to print my own limited edition CDs.
Other musicians began asking me to print CD cases for them, and then just by word of mouth I was printing invitations, business cards, bookmarks, stationery, custom wedding favor CDs. Now I'm printing non-stop.
A: I recently moved to San Francisco, where the handmade arts are extremely popular, and I found a great studio to rent a letterpress. I print on a Vandercook, which weighs nearly a ton - if I ever move out of the city, I might get my own, but for now, I'm happy to rent and have someone else maintain the press.
A: I'm a total nerd for the craft of letterpress printing -- my goal is to create designs that will maximize the beauty of ink, impression, and paper. I love white space, bold color, super crisp impression, unique papers, and ultimately I enjoy "petting" the paper and running my fingers over the textured details.
For custom work, it's important to me to capture the personality of whomever I'm creating for. I love hand-drawings, which I can turn into digital art to print. I am also a big fan of typography - the right font makes all the difference, and I often create custom fonts to perfectly suit each project.
A: First of all, it's hugely satisfying to make real, physical things. Most people have jobs with no tangible product. When you work with your hands, there's a rush, an instant gratification, and a sort of soothing magic that comes, and you love whatever you made, no matter the imperfections. Second, the ease of digital reproduction has made us run towards one-of-a-kind goods. It's an expression of individualism - we want to define our own style and embrace our idiosyncrasies. I love buying hand-made goods because I know I'm directly supporting someone's artistic expression and encouraging more creativity.