Back in January, Jen from Starshaped Press reached out, asking me to be a part of the 2015 Amalgamated Printer’s Association (APA) Wayzgoose. She was planning the entire event & wanted the attendees to tour several letterpress print studios in our neighborhood. My initial response to Jen was “but I use polymer”. Quickly followed by “I’m very shy”. She assured me the group didn’t care. They would be interested in my equipment, work & the fact I was helping keep letterpress printing alive. I reluctantly agreed & put it out of my mind.
As June grew near, I started getting nervous. Again Jen reassured me. I had never hosted printers in my studio and had no idea what to talk about. Most tours are spent explaining a little print history followed by a rundown of the platen press and finalized with a demonstration. That wasn’t going to cut it for this group. After all, most have been printing for several decades. Some longer than I have been alive. I decided to share something they didn’t know, my story & how I got into printing.
I started off a little shaky; public speaking is a struggle for me. For about 10 minutes, on a Friday in June, three separate times, I spoke to groups of about 30 printers and shared my path. They were very gracious, asked questions, investigated my printing presses & took photos of my space. The most photographed areas were my California Job Case wall, followed by my collection of threes then my paper gauge pins (all in the first photo). Everyone was extremely complimentary of my work and space. I even got a couple pointers on my C+P’s noisy motor. It was great! I loved meeting people I’ve been following on Instagram and putting faces with the names & work. It was like meeting letterpress royalty.
Later that night I attended the APA dinner and talk where I got to spend some one-on-one time with a several of the attendees. I cannot even begin to explain how kind and encouraging the group was. The group is passionate about printing & equipment and just good people. So good in fact, I’m considering joining the APA.
Thanks to everyone who came out! You guys are an amazing group of craftsman. A HUGE thanks to Jen for organizing such a dreamy event. I’m honored to have been a part of it. Be sure to search #chicagoose for some stunning photos of all the weekend's events.