Press On

by Nick Hand in Bristol, Bristol City, United Kingdom

Total raised £2,174

£20,000 target 43 days left
10% 62 supporters
Keep what you raise – this project will receive all pledges made by 1st July 2024 at 7:00am

A letterpress journey around Britain's public libraries by bicycle, printing bookmarks along the way.

by Nick Hand in Bristol, Bristol City, United Kingdom

Press On is an adventure that will take the printing bike from library to library across Britain printing bookmarks along the way. Each bookmark design will be inspired by the words and images of writers and artists in support of public libraries.

Our libraries have been under enormous pressure and have mostly survived by local support. I want to contribute to the work these communities do by visiting as many libraries as I can (as far as Orkney) and working with artists and writers to produce a limited run of unique bookmarks for each library, all printed in situ at the library itself.

The printing bike is a bespoke bicycle made for me by Robin Mather. It carries a letterpress Adana press, inks, type and blocks; everything for me to print a small print run at each stop along my journey.

I studied typography at Stafford Art College in the 1970s and spent a year in a letterpress printshop. Years later, when I heard the last commercial press in Bristol was closing, I opened the Letterpress Collective in a crafts cooperative in the Old City of Bristol. Here, I work with poets, artists, writers and musicians and pass on the skills to others through workshops and classes, to keep the craft alive.
In 2009 I travelled 6500 miles around the coast of Britain and Ireland on a bicycle recording the work and lives of crafts people. When I opened the Letterpress Collective I had the idea of doing a long journey as a Journeyman — a travelling printer — this was when the idea of a printing bike became a reality.

The money I raise in this project will be used to support the journey, it will go towards texts, illustrations, printing materials, and overnight stays to make the journey possible. Any money left at the end will stay in the letterpress to keep the presses turning and to allow people to continue to see and learn this amazing craft in action.

The photos below are of some of the rewards for supporting the project which are listed on the right of the screen.

1715254339_ugly_cover_sm.jpg

1715254627_ugly_spread_three_sm.jpg

Conversations from Land's End to John o'Groats
The little book records the last adventure with the Printing Bike.
More details in column right.

1715256027_conv_cover_sm.jpg

1715256049_conv_dust_jacket_sm.jpg

1715256063_conv_spread_two_sm.jpg

A letterpress workshop for groups
The group workshops all take place in the letterpress printshop in the centre of Bristol. More details in column right.

1715257028_2_print_shop_sm.jpg1715256955_1_print_shop_sm.jpg

Rewards

This project offers rewards in return for your donation. Please select a reward below.

£90 or more

5 of 400 claimed

A complete set of bookmarks, one from each library

A bookmark from each of the libraries visited during the project, there will be at least thirty different bookmarks, they will be either typographic or illustrative. Each will be printed letterpress and inspired by someone with a close connection to the particular library, often a writer, a poet, an artist. The illustrations will be lino cuts or from blocks and the type hand set lead or wood type.

£5 or more

5 of 300 claimed

Bookmark

One bookmark from the project. It could be any of the 30 or so different bookmarks designed for each library.

£10 or more

19 of 300 claimed

Three bookmarks

Three bookmarks from the project. It could be any of the 30 or so different bookmarks designed for each library.

£20 or more

5 of 200 claimed

Conversations from Land's End to John o'Groats

One copy of Conversations from Land’s End to John o’Groats: a book celebrating my journey to document crafts in towns known for making one thing. 168x135mm. Casebound with jacket. 72 pages. Full colour photography and original wood and lino engravings. Printed litho by Gomer Press in West Wales.

£30 or more

8 of 400 claimed

Ugly Pieces of Metal, a book by Paul Peter Piech

This is a letterpress 2nd edition of a book which was first published in 1976. It was written by William J Leahy & illustrated by Paul Peter Piech. It is a funny and beautiful book about how terrible and destructive the motor car is. Paul was an American who spent much of his life in South Wales, he was a advocate for positive social and political change. 16 pages, 200mmx140mm, printed letterpress on Zerkall paper with dark red board cover.

£55 or more

4 of 400 claimed

Baffled at a Bookcase by Alan Bennett

A letterpress printed book written by Alan Bennett about the libraries that have been important to him in his life. The book is beautifully illustrated by Jon McNaught and is set in lead type and printed letterpress. 124x184mm, 32 pages, 2 colours plus 8 page board cover.

£160 or more

0 of 10 claimed

Journeyman, letterpress book, hand bound

Journeyman is a celebration of British craft and of slow travel. It is a collection of stories of people who dedicate their life to a particular craft and passion; all collected by one man on a bicycle with a printing press . Large-format, limited edition letterpress publication. The type has been hand set. Each illustration is printed directly from an engraved lino block. Includes hand made slipcase.

£750 or more

0 of 10 claimed

A letterpress workshop for groups, up to 5 people

An introduction to hand-setting type and letterpress printing for small businesses to have a team day at our central Bristol printshop. You will learn the basics of composing lead & wood type by hand, and how to use some of the brilliant old presses. There will be lots of support to learn and produce your own prints. If you and your team want to stay overnight, there are great restaurants and hotels on our doorstep. Pick a day to suit you.

£1,500 or more

0 of 5 claimed

A letterpress workshop for groups, up to 10 people

An introduction to hand-setting type and letterpress printing for small businesses to have a team day at our central Bristol printshop. You will learn the basics of composing lead & wood type by hand, and how to use some of the brilliant old presses. There will be lots of support to learn and produce your own prints. If you and your team want to stay overnight, there are great restaurants and hotels on our doorstep. Pick a day to suit you.

Show your support

Payment and personal details are protected