I certainly didn’t plan on becoming a Printer’s Apprentice. The work has low pay, you have permanently ink-stained fingers, there are tonnes of metal to get dramatically squished in, and there is the possibility of having a teacher who insists that sorting all the apostrophes from the commas is an afternoon of well-spent edification.
In fact, I was sort of hoping that I had reached that time of life when I might become less ‘hands on’, and more ‘director-y’. An ergonomically designed chair, a GST number, heck, even an actual use for some sassy gold leather ankle boots. But then all sorts of events led me to being back in the Edinburgh of the South without too much of a plan, but with an absolute desire to do something that I really really wanted to do. Food, warmth and the occasional bottle of bubbles would be nice too.
Letterpress. Well, that is certainly something I’m mad about. It’s like the work I’ve been doing for the last ten years, but without a computer. I quite like a good typeface, and I know what leading, kerning and a serif is, plus I like wearing an apron.
I trotted over to the Otakau Press Room at the University of Otago, to find out who would be willing to teach me the Hows and Whys of putting ink on paper. Mr Donald Kerr, protector of the press, could see I was keen to learn and so he recommended that I get in touch with Mr Rob Lamb, a letterpress printer with presses in Purakanui, who was lined up for the Otakau Press 2013 printer in residence.
“I am interested in learning more about running presses”
“Pop over sometime. You bring the Chocolate Digestives“.