Thanks so much for checking out my indiegogo campaign. My name is J. Hukee. I'm opening a community print shop, Pope Press in Olympia, Washington. We'll offer classes and workshops in the art of letterpress and book making. The money that you help raise during this campaign will go toward paying off the press and purchasing all of the necessary equipment still needed to get the studio ready for students and printing. It will also help make Olympia, Washington a letterpress printing destination, making classes in letterpress and bookmaking accessible to the local community, as well as those willing to travel for a new letterpress adventure.
Pope Press will offer a space for artists, writers, letterpress enthusiasts, anyone interested in expanding their creative outlets, or those wanting to satisfy their letterpress curiosity to come and explore the art of letterpress and bookmaking. We'll offer classes in how to operate the presses; explore and experiment with pressure printing; business and calling card design and printing; linoleum block carving; printing limited edition artist books; teaching different techniques in bookbinding; and more. We'll also offer print residencies at various times during the year.
This project is important to me as someone who has a great love for letterpress printing and for teaching others how to print. I've been a collective member of Community Print, a small letterpress print shop in Olympia that's offered a space for folks to set type and print their band posters and punk manifestos for 15 years. In the time that I've been a part of Community Print, I've taught around 20 letterpress proficiencies on our Vandercook #14 proofing press to roughly 110 people. Pope Press is a place for beginners, seasoned printers and folks who use Community Print to learn new techniques and expand on what they already know.
Last Winter I met and started volunteering for Dr. Elspeth Pope. She was a retired professor of Library Science. She had started a women's artist residency, Hypatia-in-the-Woods, on her property on Hammersley inlet in Shelton, Washington. Elspeth was also a long time hobby printer, with a printing press in her basement where she had over the years printed many poetry broadsides and occasionally hosted letterpress workshops to benefit the artist residency. Elspeth quickly became a friend and mentor to me. We spent Saturdays printing together on the press and organizing the studio. Elspeth's vision was for people to come learn letterpress and print on her equipment. Elspeth died on May 18th of 2013. Elspeth's home was left to her two step-sons, along with the press in the basement. I approached them with the idea of purchasing it to open a community print shop. They thought it a fitting way to honor Elspeth and they've been quite generous in giving me time to pay it off. In opening Pope Press, we'll be able to see Elspeth's vision honored and expand on it by offering print residencies to writers and letterpress enthusiasts.
Our first class will be a pressure printing class on Sunday, March 16th, taught by Catherine Alice Michaelis, owner and letterpress printer of May Day Press since 1992 - an amazing writer, seasoned printer, and maker of beautiful limited edition books. It seems very fitting to have Catherine teach the first workshop in the studio as she was Elspeth's neighbor and dear friend. We will have other seasoned and master printers teaching workshops and classes. Soon we'll have more information on our website, www.popepressolympia.com including a full schedule of classes for the next few months and a link to register for all future classes.
We've done so much work so far in making Pope Press a reality. We found a space in a warehouse in downtown Olympia. The building was occupied by Forrest Peaker, Web Designer; Roussa Cassel, Architectural Design; and Micah Gilman, Web Designer. Roussa had worked on designing the space and together we managed to transform a large empty warehouse into a collective work space with three separate studios, and a large open space with a gallery wall for art exhibits. I wrangled an awesome group of friends to help move the studio from Shelton to the space in Olympia. I hired Jay T Scott to build a long counter for the tabletop presses with shelves underneath for paper storage and a wall mounted bookshelf. I set the studio up, obtained a business license and web domain name, and talked with printers about doing workshops and classes in the space.
We now need $10,000 to complete what is needed in the studio, minus a few things that we can work towards obtaining in the future.
We are so close to being able to open. Here is a list of what is still needed to complete the studio:
1. $8500 is still owed on the press equipment. The equipment includes:
- 1 Vandercook SP15
- 5 type cabinets full of lead type, dingbats and ornament, and one with full leading case attached
- Three tabletop platen presses - Adana "Eight-Five", Excelsior Mercury Model 5x8, Model Card Press Improved 3x5
- Letterpress furniture cabinet full of wooden furniture
- Reglet cabinet with some wooden reglets
- Various paper to be used when you come and print
- A collection of letterpress and typography books
- Type high gauge
- Lead cutter
- 6 quoins and 2 keys for job lock up
- 6 composing sticks
- 11 galleys
- Polymer plate base
2. $320 for new rollers on the Vandercook SP15
3. $400 cushioned floor mats for our concrete floor
4. $330 for rubber-based ink
5. $120 for supplies needed to cover the large drafty window
6. $160 for 4 book cradles for bookbinding
7. $200 for a lighting system above the tabletop presses
8. $350 for a bookbinding press
Total = 10,380
If we go over our goal, here is how the money will be used:
1. Indiegogo takes around 5% in fees and paypal takes an additional fee for all paypal transactions. This means that with $10,000 raised, we get around $9,300. Once we go over our $10,000 goal, we are working to recoup those fees.
2. $240 for three more 18" line gauges, three new ink knives, four new printer's aprons, two new pairs of scissors, PVA glue, one hole punch, exacto knives and blades, and a wall clock.
3. $900 for an additional counter in the space to house paper underneath it and place the paper trimmer on top. This will also offer more counter space.
4. $320 for 8 drawers for type cabinets without dividers. I have a collection of wood type and printers blocks that I'd like to add to the studio but do not have type drawers that will fit them. I'm on the lookout for drawers with out dividers to fit in a type cabinet.
5. $600 for a gallery hanging system for the gallery wall in the common space. We have a beautiful wall and great lighting for art. We've been putting nails in wall and patching and painting up until this point. It would be great to be able to have a professional hanging system for artists to use.
Total = $2,760
TOTAL FUNDING NEED = $13,140
WAYS IN WHICH YOU CAN HELP
If you can't donate at this time, that's okay. Here are some ways in which you can help make this happen:
Spread the word, spread the word, spread the word, through an email to all of your friends which includes a link to our indiegogo page
Paste the link to your facebook page, twitter, blogs, instagram. The more links we have coming back to this page via social media sites, the better. It really works, and I have faith that together we can make this happen!
- Tell people about Pope Press. Let everyone know of this new letterpress resource in Olympia.
- Come to our opening party on March 15th, 2014 from 5-8pm and take a look around. Bring a friend or two. We'll have a job set up on the press for all to print, edible treats and music. I'd love to see you all there!
A few words about Dr. Elspeth Pope by Carolyn Maddux, Writer and Board Member of Hypatia-in-the-Woods:
Dr. Elspeth Pope was a person who pursued her dreams. She put herself through library studies at McGill University in Montreal, the University of Denver, and the University of Pittsburgh, and taught library science at universities across the country, making her way with frequent bumps against the glass ceiling of academia.
While teaching at the library school at the State University of New York, Elspeth began a lifelong love of letterpress, learning the art of hand-setting type from Robert Bretz of Gaudeamus Press. She took a small platen press and an assortment of type with her to the University of Pittsburgh, where she and Dr. Jay Daily of the Graduate School of Library and Information Science named her Pangloss Press, sure that the best of all possible worlds was to teach library science and print interesting books. At the University of South Carolina, Elspeth taught students to design, set, print, and bind small pieces of writing.
When Elspeth and Jim Holly met and married, Jim offered her a choice: a diamond ring or a Vandercook SP proof press. Of course she chose the press. After they built their home in the cedar woods above Hammersley Inlet near Shelton, they planned to convert Jim’s toolshed/workshop into a shared printshop.
In 1991, recently retired, Elspeth met Dr. Melissa Hardie, director of the Hypatia Trust in Cornwall, England. The trust included a library documenting the achievements of creative women. Hypatia Trust, and Hypatia’s story, planted the seed that grew into the reality of Hypatia-in-the-Woods, a U.S. extension of the trust in Cornwall.
In 1998, after Jim’s death, Elspeth established Hypatia-in-the-Woods as a nonprofit organization. Holly House, once intended as a printshop, was rebuilt as a cottage where women could find a refuge away from everyday demands to complete projects: novels to poetry, book arts to business plans, music to manuscripts. A stroke confined Elspeth to a wheelchair in 2009 but, indomitable, she continued to live independently and direct Hypatia-in-the-Woods.
She also returned to work on her press, and with volunteer J. Hukee, pursued her dream of making the press available to skilled and would-be printers and book artists until her death in May of 2013. Her vision continues to sustain the board and volunteers in the ongoing operation of Hypatia and Holly House, and of Hukee’s Pope Press Olympia Letterpress and Book Arts Center.
Thank you for reading through our campaign. We can't do this alone. Together I know we can create an awesome community letterpress and book arts space in Olympia, Washington. See you in the studio!