Posts in World Dominance
The true story behind the Zeichen Press logo:published by Fran Shea
Okay, let’s call her “Sheila” and let’s call him “Franz Ferdinand.”
She resented every one of his hair-plugs. Row after row of weak little sprouts – such an offensive landscape. Each bloody little ring contained 4-5 “transplant hairs,” the math was easy enough – she figured that each stubby hair cost $7.40. Her pre-taxed, hourly wage at the Seed-N-Feed was $7.45 – barely enough to cover the cost of a single hair.
He had convinced her that the new hair would make him a better dancer. She knew now that it did not – his “moves” reminded her of the farmhands baling hay. Each jerky swinging of his arms nearly punching her in the stomach.
His unemployment was running out and now, thanks to this unwise investment, they would have to move into his mother’s trailer. Her whole life she wanted to be a professional dancer and had been searching for the perfect partner – why hadn’t she listened to her gut or that certified psychic that really seemed to understand her? Still, she danced with him – her graceful movements, her twirling skirt – he would have been captivated by her beauty if he wasn’t so fixated on the pounding in his chest.
Wow! We all know what happens next. Thank the Lord she knows CPR and that despite the bitterness the hair-plugs caused, she still wanted to keep him alive. Sheila and Franz Ferdinand might just make it.
Here’s the part about salvaging letterpress equipment:published by Fran Shea
People (my mom) always (whenever she feigns interest) ask me, “where do you get this stuff?” Type, cabinets, printer’s cuts, ink, chases, quoins, sticks, cutters, furniture, leads, slugs, tympan, rollers… letterpress takes up a lot more space than this tidy little laptop. I wonder if that’s one of the reasons people stopped using it? I doubt it.
Jen and I both agreed that our favorite salvaging-situation involved a compulsive hoarder with a murder/torture-pit (alleged) in his basement. This house had it all; two commercial espresso machines:
two Kluge Printing Presses:
(just in case you’re wondering: TWO Kluge Printing presses are massive and would look like this if not covered in books, dvd’s, televisions, kleenex boxes, grocery bags, magazines and mail):
a family-style restaurant booth: (this suspiciously barricaded the basement door)
dozens of old computers: (so sentimental)
“stackable” type cabinets: (we took these)
Oh, here’s a fun game:
Can you find the treasure in this photographic vignette?:
How about here?:
Oh, well. Enough of the sweet, sweet memories. Here’s part of our latest salvage:
Potato-Guns and Make Magazinepublished by Fran Shea
The other day, I needed to learn how to make a potato gun. It doesn’t matter why. Anyway, I made my way to the MAKE Magazine blog – If you haven’t been – I don’t know what to say. It’s not like we can’t be friends. It will just never be more than that.
So, they are doing this Maker Business Series and I thought, “hey, I make things… I own a business…” The potato gun would just have to wait. Sorry Edmund. …I sent an e-mail to someone named Gareth (Jen keeps referring to Gareth as “her” – I don’t have the heart to correct her) and told him about Zeichen Press – he responded and then it turned into an interview and… Go read it!!
A whirly-what??published by Fran Shea
A metalsmithing kineticist/teacher needed a business card and we made him this:
Step one:published by Fran Shea
Part of the World Domination Plan involves a complete Zeichen Press website redesign. Just imagine our new logo in living, breathing, MOVING, technicolor! Oh, the anticipation dizzies me. My prop shopping list includes a wig and a man. …I guess my husband could be the man… Lord knows he’d love the attention. Especially the mouth-to-mouth resuscitation.
My friend Fred started photographing our product line. It’s a Fair Trade – just like when the Indians traded Manhattan for wampum.
PS: Did you know that Zeichen Press cards can be delivered right to your door? That’s right! You don’t even have to leave your house. Or your bed. Like me. What will they think of next??
As we descend into the bowels of that beast called Winterpublished by Fran Shea
It is February 1.
If anyone is left please contact me. I have locked myself in the furnace room and my rations are dwindling. I am eating Panko Japanese Style Breading with a dirty popsicle stick and telling myself it’s Lik-A-Stix. Mmmmm, Lik-A-Stix…
Somehow, I was able to make this card:
Je m’appelle Françoisepublished by Fran Shea
If I were getting married I would design and letterpress print my own invitation.
What am I saying?? No, I wouldn’t. I don’t even send out the Christmas cards that I design and letterpress print. WHAT??!! I know. This is a blog post and a confession.
Anyway, Minnesota Bride included one of our wedding invitations in a nice little spread they called “Vintage in Vogue.”
2. Inspired by the couple’s romantic first meeting in the city of love, designer Fran Shea blended imagery from Paris with a vintage postcard theme to create a classic yet distinctive invite. Using letterpress printing and a unique accordion layout, this design evokes an aura of chic French elegance. Zeichen Press, 612.432.1943, zeichenpress.com
A roomful of Letterpress printerspublished by Fran Shea
It was everything I imagined. Except better, because of the chicken shots. Yum!
Mary Bruno organized the event in honor of Amos Kennedy’s timely arrival. As far as I could tell, Amos is not related to THE Kennedy family. There were certain clues, like: He did not share that distinctive/made up accent or that glamorous head of hair. Also, he is black.
Anyway, Amos was there and we hugged like old friends. There was much talk, naturally, of printing presses. Mary Bruno ended up breaking a beer bottle and using it as a weapon – apparently her “street cred” was at stake. Boy was I glad to get out of there with only minor injuries. I wish I could say the same for Jen. Please send flowers and meals to our headquarters.
Two St. Paul printers showed up : Fred Petters of Vandalia Street Press and Bill Moran of Blinc Publishing. Bill was nice. Fred ate off of other people’s plates. I could go on and on but why should I when I have this amazing photograph that perfectly captured the evening?
And this is where Fran and Jen learn to use their new Heidelbergpublished by Fran Shea
Oh, the joy of leaning over a giant machine that has the potential to crush my hands and create such beauty!
I think I felt joy. Or panic? In any case, I felt some sort of feeling while leaning over the New Press. Karl (the previous owner) had explained, really clearly, the 1,000 things to know – why couldn’t I remember them?? Knobs, pulls, blades, grippers, clutch levers, friskets, sucker bars, rollers, toggles, gears, pins, springs… they all seemed to get tangled up in my mind.
Oh, so tangled!
Just like a rat king.
That’s what happens when the tail of one thought gets covered in feces and the tail of another thought gets stuck to it… and the tail of another thought gets stuck to the other thoughts. It’s all very messy and usually ends up in some Dutch chimney.
Anyway, here’s a snippet of our lesson:
Vintage Indiepublished by Fran Shea
This is Gabreial Wyatt —>
I think we would totally have been friends in high school. She would have called us “top-secret friends”. I was told (by my “top-secret friends”) that “top-secret friends” are better than regular friends. Sure, they don’t go anywhere in public with you, or sit next to you at lunch, or acknowledge your presence – but, that doesn’t mean anything.
Gabreial keeps a blog about all things vintage AND indie. She interviewed me because we are such good “top-secret friends”.