LetterMpress: A Virtual Letterpress on Your iPad

Craft & Design

Here’s a project I couldn’t help but back, even though it’s already surpassed its desired funding goal. LetterMpress™ is a project created by John Bonadies that gives unprecedented digital access to the experience of letterpress. That’s right. Digital letterpress! Now, I’m not in any way comparing this to the physicality or the craft of actual letterpress. But despite a petite renaissance in recent years, letterpress has not made an industry comeback. Quite the contrary. Complete type sets are scarce, presses are few, and craftsmen are rare birds.
And with that in mind, what I love about most about this project is that LetterMpress™ not only archives each collected type set and makes it available to poor schleps like you and me, but there will be a co-op in Champaign, IL called The Living Letter Press where you can actually order (or make) physical prints of your virtual designs. Seriously people, this is an amazing project and I believe it will do great things.

Our goal is to give designers, artists, students, lovers of typography, anyone — the ability to produce their own authentic letterpress designs and artwork …
The design process is the same as the letterpress process — you place and arrange type and cuts on a press bed, lock the type, ink the type, and print. You will be able to create unlimited designs, with multiple colors, using authentic vintage wood type and art cuts. And you can print your design directly from LetterMpress or save it as an image for import it into other applications.

And if you’d like to geek out on some amazing real-world letterpress workshop shots, check out my post on Horwinski Printing in Oakland, CA — serious drool factor.