THE OLD SCHOOL PRESS

An occasional newsletter about forthcoming books and events
 

February 2020

In this newsletter . . .

progress on: At nightfall on the shortest day

progress on: Michael Burghers, Oxford engraver

forthcoming event: The Oxford Fine Press Book Fair
 

our newsletter archive

 

progress on
At nightfall on the shortest day

A text by Peter Davidson with a wood-engraving by Paul Kershaw



to be published at the
Oxford Fine Press Book Fair
(see below)
 


In January Paul Kershaw sent me the engraving for the image that is going in the book - strictly, two engravings just to make life that bit more interesting.


The image is made up of a foreground of strong blacks and a background featuring a finely toned, dark, and gloomy view of hills and mountains. The upper block - the background - went on the Albion first and required some make-ready but not a great deal, and - as Paul told me it would - it printed itself.

I use a heavy pin roller for inking - it's heavy enough to just be floated along the brass bearers using its own weight to give perfect inking. It's the lugging to and from the inking plate that's hard work. The paper is a light, esparto-based paper, chosen not least because it has a similar tone to the text paper, and it needed no damping.

Paul provided a proof showing how he envisaged the image being printed. I used that to guide my make-ready and then the inking, making occasional checks to make sure things were still going in the right direction.

Meanwhile the text section has been folded, gathered, and trimmed, and the covers of Larroque hand-made paper are prepared, all ready for tipping in the engraving and sewing up, in time for the coming Oxford Fine Press Book Fair in a month's time - see below.


 

progress on
Michael Burghers: Oxford engraver

A monograph by Jim Nottingham and Martyn Ould about one of the finest engravers on copper



to be published at the
Oxford Fine Press Book Fair
(see below)
 


This book is now with our binders, Ludlow Bookbinders. It's a small edition from which there are just forty-two copies for sale, but we do still have some copies not yet spoken for.

This will be the first book devoted to the work of Michael Burghers and we're pleased to be able to make it unique in containing prints from eight of Burghers's original plates, to accompany the biographical notes and an assessment of his work in Oxford, where he was active between about 1674 and 1726.


Nick Gill at Effra Typefoundry cast the Van Dijck type for the text for us, from digital copy. Our first job when it arrived here was to take the twenty-five packs of type and make them up into pages with running heads and folios. Then onto the Western proof press they go, two up. I could print four up and halve the machining time but with such a small edition there's not much in it and I prefer to avoid the slightly greater registration issues.

Once the proof press is set up, printing can proceed pretty smoothly, and before long there's a small stack of printed sheets of Abbey Mills paper ready to be folded and gathered, for sending up to the binders. Another title ready for the Oxford Fair.


 

news about
The 2020 Oxford Fine Press Book Fair

We will be there!




28-29 March 2020
 


Hoping you can make it too.

It's worth checking the flyer below as there are several other book-related events going on in Oxford around the time of the Fair.

 

 

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Copyright Martyn Ould 2020