An introduction to typesetting

Friday 5 December 2014

Letterpress printing with metal or wooden type is amazing because it lets you arrange letters, numbers, and symbols in any number of ways in order to create an almost infinite range of designs. And once you’ve printed your creation you just put all the letters back in the typecase and you’re ready to start again. It’s a bit like lego – all you need is your creativity!

My new range of gift tags is created entirely from my collection of letterpress type. I have used Gill Sans and Bembo for these designs, along with some fleurons (stars and flowers). There is something really satisfying about assembling all these tiny pieces of metal, and so I decided I would put something together to explain how this element of my creative process happens.

As part of the letterpress workshops that I ran at the University of Reading last month I produced a handout for the students as a visual reminder of the typesetting process. This showed each of the steps involved in setting a line of type, and I have now refactored the images and captions used in that handout into a slideshow which you can view here.

If the video above isn't working you can also watch this slideshow on vimeo.

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