Type setting Songs for Autumn

Borrowed Type 

A few years ago, my lovely friend, book artist and letterpress printer Angie Butler offered me long term loan of some 12pt Engravers lead type. I explored the type with a view to printing an album cover on my press but didn’t have enough characters to complete the song titles. I opted for the polymer plate instead which was a much more efficient use of time and gave me more flexibility designing the album. 

I am currently working on an EP “Autumn" for my other project, Red Deer Sleeping. The songs are based on poems by Amy Lowell, Christina Rossetti, Adelaide Crapsey and R.L.Stevenson. There are only five songs on this EP and the Engravers type have been hibernating in their wooden trays for long enough. It's time to wake them up and re-introduce them to the press and have a go at typesetting the song titles. 


And your point is...?

3 trays of Engravers type. 3 different sizes cast in 12pt. 


Again I didn’t have enough type to complete the songs at the same size so as I ran out of one size I added a different size in it’s place. Any missing type, I replaced with 12pt Times. So the result is a sporadic mix of small, medium and large Engravers 12pt type with a dash of Times! This is something I may have steered clear of if I was making a design on the computer but sometimes limitations can bring surprising and possibly more interesting results. We’ll see!

Thank you Angie for the loan of the type! : )) 

Art On The Hill - Pop Up Letterpress & Rubberstamp Printing

Thanks to all of you who came along to the Pop Up Letterpress and Rubberstamp Printing at Art On The Hill. It was lovely to meet so many enthusistic folk and your prints were wonderful! I’ve posted many of them to instagram. 

Thanks also to Jo who hosted the Pop Up Printing at her home in Windmill Hill, Bristol. Her beautiful dogs Lollie and Coco seemed to have a lovely time too. See pics below!

Letterpress Typesetting & Printing

Even dogs love letterpress! 

Rubberstamp Printing

UWE students - Sebastian, Lottie, Esther, Lucy and Josh. Super stamping! : ))

UWE students - Sebastian, Lottie, Esther, Lucy and Josh. Super stamping! : ))

Rubberstamp printing is for everyone. From 3 years old to to 103 years old! You can print with pre-made stamps or carve your own individual stamp. 

Rubberstamp printing is for everyone. From 3 years old to to 103 years old! You can print with pre-made stamps or carve your own individual stamp. 


I am currently running letterpress and rubberstamp printing workshops at El Rincon Spanish Tapas Bar and Salt Cafe, Bristol. Get in touch if you would like to book your space. 

Autumnal Dreams and Stories

"No spring nor summer beauty hath such grace as I have seen in one autumnal face."

John Donne

The eightfivepress studio has been quiet over the summer. Alongside printmaking I also make music and have been working on recording songs for a new EP based on classic poems. I’m hoping to release it over the Autumn and I’ll be printing the EP covers on my adana press. I’ll keep you posted!

Letterpress Workshop

Printing dreams and stories at El Rincon Spanish Tapas Bar


El Rincon is a cosy Spanish Tapas bar and vibrant music venue tucked at the bottom of North Street, alongside South Bristol’s buzzing community of local shops and cafes and restaurants.   

I set up my adana press and boxes of type for a letterpress workshop with David and Jodie. 

David and Jodie bring their ideas in a journal filled with magical quotes from their 3 year old daughter. They each pick a quote to make a print and begin typesetting with a combination of metal and resin type. 

Quote for Jodie’s Print

"I want to rule the World. It’s one of my dreams” 

Quote for David’s Print

“Tell me a story from your mind.” 

Printing the whole quote in the chase is asking alot from the adana so after setting the type we remove some of the lines of type and replace them with furniture / spacing. This way David and Jodie can print the quote in stages and get a much clearer print. 

Here are the results of their hard work.


As David and Jodie finish off their last few prints, the El Rincon Tortilla Championships are about to begin...

Thanks David and Jodie for your exuberance! It was great to print with you. 

Letterpress Cards for El Rincón The Spanish Bar

The Process

David from El Rincón asked me to design and print cards for his Spanish Bar. He really liked the Berthold Futura typeface which I used for the letterpress workshops poster. Obviously the type is too big for business card size so I hunted out some of my old cards printed with this typeface, cut out the words with the characters I needed, scanned and re-arranged them in Photoshop. 

Digital to Analogue

I worked up the design in Photoshop and sent off the file to be made into a polymer plate. 100 cards were to be printed on both sides in black and red so each side would need be printed twice. That's 400 prints for 100 cards. Oh for the love of letterpress!

Next Up:

  1. Cut the polymer plate into 4 smaller plates.
  2. Line up plates individually for each print run.
  3. Print El Rincon in black letterpress ink.
  4. Clean up the rollers and ink disk.
  5. Apply red ink for the second batch of printing.
  6. Replace the ‘El Rincon’ polymer plate with the tiny accent.
  7. Line up the accent over the ‘o’ in El Rincón and print the second colour.  
  8. Leave for a few days to dry

100 accents printed in red linseed oil based ink on recycled card. 

When the first side is dry apply this process all over again for the second side ‘The Spanish Bar - Bristol.’

If you would like bespoke letterpress cards printed on the Adana 8 x 5 please email mog@eightivepress.co.uk