Literally. Presses falling from the sky. We were nearly crushed.
We laid out our new venture to another artist friend (Kate McCavitt, shamless plug, check out her work!) to get her opinion and see if we were crazy. She said that yes, we are both a little nuts on the regular, but that our idea is a good one. And that we are hilarious and that we should print shit for the masses!
Bolstered by Kate’s endorsement, we were confident in moving forward. So…let’s produce, right? But how?
I have been making handmade cards for years and love doing it. But you know what? Handmade = mucho labor (do you hear that China?). We had to come up with a way to do large runs with less labor. You might have heard of this incredible, cutting edge invention called the printing press? No? It’s fucking amazing! Did we have one? No. No we did not.
And did I mention that we are relatively poor? No excess funds to run out and start a new art business…kids sucking some of us dry….day jobs crushing our creative souls (oh wait, I digress!). So we were thinking of ways to produce on a shoestring budget while still maintaining the quality that is so important to us – we were going to figure it out, no matter the manner.
And then we were nearly crushed by a 268 lb flat press falling into our laps (Blick Master Etch Model II). So it wasn’t literally from Heaven, but it was answer to our prayers! That Goddess, Kate, mentioned our venture to a mutual friend who had a press in her studio that she wasn’t using. AND SHE GAVE IT TO US. FOR FREE. FOR REAL. It took 5 of us to move it to our studio (I really should’ve recorded that). And it is beautiful. And perfect. And EXACTLY what we needed. Gratitude doesn’t even begin to cover it…
And so we were on our way. Printing, playing, experimenting, and creating very cool things. By the way, did I mention that neither none of us had ever used a printing press before? I’m just saying. But Karen completely rocks the research on the regular (really, she’s incredible) and she found us paint, paper, tools, printing plates, etc. So. Much. Fun.
And literally a couple of weeks later, we were not really crushed, more like bruised by getting a second press – a letter press – a bucket list item for me personally! Another Goddess in our circle of friends (yes, we do have friends besides each other) knew an artist cleaning out her space and she had an old, rusty, cast iron, non-functioning Kelsey letterpress and trays of letters. AND SHE SOLD IT TO US FOR A SONG.
And suddenly, we are knee deep in presses. In less than a month’s time. I’m thinking we were meant to print shit, don’t you think?