Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Kluge Proofs

These are a few images of some proofs we made from the 12x18 Kluge at Mama's Sauce over the weekend.  The Debossing was done at the 'Sauce down in Orlando, the inked text was run from the NS 8x12 C&P at my place (G. Johanson, Printer).

The stock used is 220# / 600gsm Crane Lettra, their thickest cover stock.  This was selected owing to the deboss, which covered very nearly 7 inches.  The stock behaved quite nicely, especially where the depression comes close to the edge of the stock.  No creasing or warping.

Debossing tends to polish the paper where the die face meets the fibers, creating an interesting reflection and shadow-play.  I angled the cards to create the shadow, showing the depth of the deboss.

Here's a shot of the text.  After we did the leveling of the Kluge's platen, and the testing of the deboss., I thought I would simply take these test cards home, 40 minutes north in Volusia County, and ink up my own press and do some proofs of the text block.  Just to get an idea of the finished product. 

The inked text debossed nicely too.  Here, we do not want to punch as deep as with the blind deboss image.  Type will slice fiber, which makes it possible to punch through the stock if you aren't careful.  You want a nice balance of sharp ink transfer and enough depression to create a pleasing presentation.

Here's a bit of a close-up.  The ink is a Charcoal gray, 3:1 dense black to opaque white.

So, this is what we did over the Memorial Day Weekend.  Hope your weekend was good, too!


Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Anna & Zac Coleman's Wedding: Photobooth

Well, the nearly one year's worth of planning and getting stuff together, printing Invites, RSVPs, Coasters and Programmes, going back and forth to the venue 45 minuites away finally came to fruition at six o'clock p.m. on Saturday, May 21st, 2011, in spite of Judgement Day!   The funny thing was that we, the parents, were also married on another famous predicted day of the Second Coming: September 24th, 1988!  Could it be that the Johanson Family is messing up the Divine Timeclock?  ( I hardly think so.)

The wedding was held at Harmony Gardens, DeLeon Springs, Florida.  One of the fun things we set up was a Photobooth consisting of a three sided tent, a picture frame hanging from wire, a tripod, my sweet wife's digital camera, lots of cheap costume props, and a lot of folks with character playing around with it, including the Bride herself.  This is a sequence of over 100 photos taken that evening. 

So Anna and Zac, from us (crazies) to you: all the Sovereign's best in the years to come!

And Anna: get some ideas while you are skipping and hopping up there all over the Smokies ,for some Paper Bird designs :>)


Sunday, May 1, 2011

Invitations for Jessica & Felix!

Jessica asked me to do some Invites for her down in the Coral Gables area, my old stomping grounds (back when we had White Tower Hamburgers and Burger King wasn't even thought of yet!).  The plan was to have a heavy blind cursive deboss covering close to half  of each card.  Because of the broad area of coverage, we opted for the heavier cotton rag stock, Lettra 220#.  While debossing is common in Letterpress, particularly the blind deboss, wide area coverage on average thickness cover stock such as 110 could create a very heavy depression on the rear, and worse, since the deboss comes so close to the edge, could create a crease.

Both RSVP and Invite will be housed in Crane's matching envelopes.  All dies are designed via FreeHand, and are etched in 16 gauge magnesium, hardwood mounted by Owosso Graphics, who does a killer job.  Why not photopolymer?  I'm a traditionalist, and prefer metal if I can possibly use it.  For debossing, I believe it's the best thing to use.  Yes, it costs a bit more, but honestly, not significantly so. 

Oh, there's ink used, too!  It will be a softened black, a shade of charcoal to de-emphasize severe contrast between the Pearl White and the darker text.

So, here we are, dies, envelopes, paper and "paste-ups", which are made from Owosso's Proofs.  They are cut and taped into position on cut stock to give an idea of proportion.

A close-up of the deboss and text dies for the A7 size invitation.  Each card will go through a press twice, once for the deboss, for which we will use the big locomotive sized 12x18 Brandtjen Kluge, and then once through an 8x12 C&P platen jobber up at my shop.  I could do the whole thing there, deboss and all, but that's a lot of ink, and technically, I am borrowing time into Nick's work-flow, so while I want to take my time to do it right, I don't want to gobble up all the production time at that facility.  Thus, the heavy work is done at Mama's Sauce, Orlando FL, the inking being done at G. Johanson, Printer, in Deltona/Orange City, FL.  Incidently, if you go to the Sauce link, one of the videos shows the Kluge in action, starring Nick and Yours Truly. 

These are the mag dies for the RSVP.  Again, the top die is for the blind deboss, the bottom die is for text. 

The next shots are of the mock-up, or "Paste-ups", which use the actual proofs supplied by Owosso. Graphics.  These guys do a great job.  And frankly, anyone who takes FH11 files is awesome in my book.  The above image is the RSVP

This is the A7 invitation paste-up, on the actual 220# cover stock, Lettra 220# Pearl White.

Just to give you an idea of the thickness of 220#, here's a close-up of one of the corners  While not beer-coaster thickness (which is another thing I do: Beer / Drink coasters.) - it's pretty beefy stuff!  And oh, is it posh.  I've heard this product referred to as Letterpress Crack.

This is a shot of both Invitation and RSVP in the same envelope, along with the RSVP 4Bar envelope.  I love the simple elegance and understated presentation of unadorned Pearl white.

And finally, this is the 'bundle' all put together and placed in Crane's A7 Pearl White envelope.
Well, that's pretty much it for this installment.  Stay tuned for the next progress report.  There may be a film short of the debossing at Mama's Sauce using the Kluge.  It's an impressive machine, which must be hand fed owing to the stock thickness.

Good Providence in all  your Letterpress Endeavors.!