Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Surprise in the Mailbox

Christmas has come early in the Nora Whynot Studio with the grand arrival of one heavy-duty wooden crate filled with our very own Kelsey letterpress courtesy of Charlie over in Minnesota and ebay.

Charlie did the most effective and secure piece of packaging I have ever seen. So much so I don't think I will ever look at a piece of cling film in the same light again. I can image without such protection our little press would have taken a real beating on its journey from the States.

So now we own a reconditioned Kelsey Letterpress and to quote "The Kelsey press is a classic 'first press' every young printer should start with", well we're not exactly young printers but what is lacking in age is made up in enthusiasm.

We might not know the language or have the years of experience, but with time and practice the rewards am sure will come. In fact today I learnt my first word "slug", it's the same as leading but three times as thick.

So in saying that we're now going to throw a few slugs on the chase, roll up our sleeves and get the vegetable oil out.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Storms over Charlotte Street

Nora's team were buzzing in the Whynot office today. Twenty of our calendars had to be assembled, packed and shipped off before a 5pm deadline, all the while a monster of a storm was wreaking havoc outside our building in Charlotte Street.

The post office being just around the corner meant our precious packages had to be somehow protected from the fierce storm, it was decided two black heavy duty bin bags would do just the job.

Unfortunately no one had mentioned this to me, who had earlier in the day emptied two full bins with the good intentions of depositing them into larger bins. However due to a short term memory loss and a subway 6 inch meatball sub had completely forgotten to dispose of either of them.

Just as I was about to drop the bags into the bin, an irate lady carrying a floral brolly dressed in a yellow macintosh forcefully grabbed them and quickly marched off in the direction of the Mary Street post office.

Oops sorry Nora, I have a feeling your parcels will be a lot safer with Australia Post.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Design Sponge - Nora salutes you!

It might have been a stormy Wednesday here in Brisbane but that didn't dampen the spirits of our Nora Whynot Team who were thrilled to see that Design Sponge had run a small editorial piece about the Thyme Calendar.

We had some wonderful feedback and comments about our work which is very encouraging and would like to thank all those people who took the time to comment and mention us on their blogs, especially to Bespoke and Studio Home Creative over in New Zealand.

Tomorrow we will have great pleasure in tootling down to the local post office to deposit our little treasures, where hopefully they will be dispatched to all areas of the globe from Germany to Texas and even NSW where our first customer Katherine will receive the very first print of our calendar, 1 of 100. I know it's not like winning the lotto but surely it's a close second!

Friday, November 14, 2008

It's not just a calendar!

We are happy to announce we have finally completed our 2009 Thyme Calendar. This challenging project has been a real labour of love for all concerned, with lots of late nights, baggy eyes and copious amounts of tea you could stand a spoon in.

Needless to say we have learnt an enormous amount about the techniques involved in the process of screen printing. Inks, gels, extenders, block outs, retarders, gum tape... not to mention that wearing rubber gloves whilst printing really isn't a good idea in this heat. Easier to get covered in the stuff and learn to love it, and I have a feeling love really is in the air with this wonderful art form.

So despite the long days and the even longer nights we are still prepared to do it all over again. Why? it's a great feeling to know your piece of work might one day be sitting on someones desk covered in pencil scribbles and post it notes with reminders that little Tommy really must go the dentist this week.

Ah yes it really does makes it all worthwhile...

See, we told you it's not just a calendar!

And finally, I would just like to say big thank you to Bespoke Press who said wonderful things about us on their beautiful blog... and to Little Jane St again an inspirational blog with some beautiful work - thanks for your kind comments.

Happy weekend to all.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

2009 Thyme Calendar

The Whynot team finally began work on the 2009 Thyme Calendar, the first project for the newly formed Nora Whynot Press. All the screenprinting equipment for this little adventure was gathered from Gabba Screenprinters here in Brisbane who were exceptionally helpful and generous in the giving of both their time and information.

So one very hot Saturday morning we began to print our very first screen. It's been 25 years since I last held a squeegee and wondered if it was a bit like riding a bike...would it come back to me. Needless to say holding the squeegee was the least of my problems!

I don't think we quite realised what a challenge printing 13 pages would be. Ink too thick, ink too thin, too hot... ink drying in the screen, ink every where except where it should be..on the floor, on the fridge...on the cat.

Two long hours later it seemed to be working and we became very excited by what we were finally producing, even the cat had a relieved look on his face. So to cut a very long story short it's now week two and we are well on our way to completing the Calendar just in 'thyme' for Christmas.

We hope to have 100 limited editions of the calendar finished and placed into our etsy shop by the end of next week.

Below are a few pics to showcase our efforts. We made the vacuum table using a vacuum cleaner that was bought specially for the job. We were promised by the retailer that it wouldn't blow up due to over use whilst printing, so far so good, although am sure he must have been laughing under his breath!