Jill BroadhackerParticipant@jillbroadhacker7 years, 11 months ago
As soon as I announced my the opening of my letterpress studio, a lot of folks have contacted me to print their designs. Since I don’t offer commercial printing services, I turn them away. I try to do it politely and I refer them to a commercial printer in town that does great letterpress printing.
People don’t understand that I have my presses to print my work. My equipment isn’t ideal to print 3 color business cards and I don’t offer metallic foils, etc.. Folks don’t get that not every press is suited for every job. (And I also don’t do wall decals or t-shirts, I get that a lot!)
Has anyone else dealt with this? How do you respond? Am I weird for not printing everyone’s designs?
Christine MedleyParticipant@christinemedley7 years, 11 months ago
Hi Jill…I’m in the same situation. I have my presses set up only to print my own work and then I offer community workshops to help pay the rent once and awhile. I fortunately have a letterpress friend that I refer all commercial requests to and explain my presses aren’t good for large runs and multi-color. I don’t know where you’re located, but maybe you can find someone that isn’t too far out that you feel comfortable referring people to. Although these days, sending them online to work with a great letterpress printer works just fine!
Chris (Scranton, PA)
Jessica C. WhiteParticipant@jessicacwhite7 years, 11 months ago
I don’t offer printing services either. I refer requests to other local printers who rely on this type of work. I actually enjoy telling people about what I do that’s different from what they may have heard about letterpress, and I think it’s great that we can open their eyes to all the possibilities that are out there with letterpress printing. They might not be that interested in hearing about my book projects when all they want is wedding invitations, but that doesn’t bother me 🙂
Arie KoelewynParticipant@ariekoelewyn7 years, 10 months ago
Not strange. Normal for me. I turn down all jobs for money as printing is just a hobby for me. Sometimes a job is impossible to refuse (family, close friends, etc.) then I try to invite the person over to print their own invitation or whatever. Usually works and since they print their own…no complaints or do-overs. And some folks have a better concept of what letterpress is. If they can’t come to the shop, I have to decide if the job is a gift. I’ve done a few of those.
Jill BroadhackerParticipant@jillbroadhacker7 years, 10 months ago
It’s good to know I’m not alone!
BrandiParticipant@brandi7 years, 9 months ago
I struggle with this as well. I am just getting back into letterpress after a year’s break (had to let go of my in-home print shop to move), but during that time I digitally printed my artwork. Either way, I don’t consider myself a commercial printer either.
Has anyone came up with a name for what we do? Sometimes I say I am an artsy printer or a specialty printer. I am still trying to figure out how to explain it. In their mind – I print therefore I will print.
Jessica C. WhiteParticipant@jessicacwhite7 years, 8 months ago
I usually tell people that I’m an artist, or “studio artist” to make it sound more official, especially here in Asheville where almost everyone is some type of artist. If they want to know more, I tell them that I’m a printmaker and book artist. If they still ask for more, I tell them about letterpress printing, etc., and then the conversation gets fun. 🙂 During this conversation, if they ask if I’ll print something for them, I refer them to a friend who will be happy to.
BrandiParticipant@brandi7 years, 8 months ago
Jessica – yes, I think that studio artist might be a good way to word it. I also agree that having somewhere to refer them is always helpful. My husband always laughs about my conversations. No matter how the conversation starts, it always seems to end with me talking about art or printing. I do love chatting about it and most people do seem to find it interesting.
Thank you so much for the feedback. It didn’t seem to be as big of a deal when I was selling online, but now that I have a retail space, I get quite a few more people coming in for commercial printing.
Log in to reply
- You must be logged in to reply to this topic.