Tuesday, September 29, 2009

New Acquisitions

Since I brought home all sorts of goodies from the Printers' Wayzgoose in Mt. Pleasant, I've wanted to test is all out.  Here are a few shots of some of the things I brought home and have been testing out.

Monday, September 28, 2009

APA Wayzgoose!

Some of you may wonder exactly what a Wayzgoose is....so here is the definition (via Wikipedia):

"Wayzgoose was at one time the name for an entertainment given by a master printer to his workmen each year on or about St Bartholomew's Day (24 August). This marked the traditional end of summer and the point at which the season of working by candlelight began. Later, the word came to refer to the annual outing and dinner of the staff of a printing works or the printers on a newspaper"

From September 18-20 I attended the Amalgamated Printer's Association's annual Wayzgoose at Printers' Hall in Mt. Pleasant, Iowa.  Printers' Hall is a working museum, with nearly thirty pieces (if not more) of working printing equipment.  They coined this Wayzgoose as a "Play-goose," as everyone was encouraged to "play" with the equipment.  

While I was there I got to print on a Uni-I Vandercook, as well as watch and listen to many older printers and some young ones alike.  Overall it was not only educational but a great time.  And I also came home with a bunch of new type and equipment!  

Sunday, September 27, 2009

The worst blogger ever....

...is me!  September has been so crazy!  I've felt out of touch with blogger world, but I've had so much to share! 
As seen in the previous post, Matt and I were heading up to Okoboji for Labor Day weekend.  We camped out and it was gorgeous the entire weekend.  The above shot is our view from the tent.  

Of course the main reason we headed north was for the flea markets.  Okoboji has three flea markets over the holiday weekend and we stopped by Clear Lake's flea market on the way home Sunday.  Here is some of the great stuff along the path of the Okoboji Flea Market and Clear Lake Flea Market.  There was a ton of great stuff at both places.  Unfortunately (or maybe fortunately) my car limits the amount of purchases we can make, so most the photos here are objects of desire.  Enjoy!

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Take a trip to the I-O-W-A Ocean!

This weekend Matt and I will be making our annual pilgrimage to the one, the only I-O-W-A Ocean, otherwise known as Okoboji. The major summer holidays are filled with multiple flea markets in the Okoboji area and we both love a flea hunt.  Vick's Corner will be celebrating its 118th flea market, while Treasure Village and the Dickinson Co. Expo Antique and Flea Market will also be crawling with bargain hunters, junk pilferers, and antique junkies.  

In addition to the flea-trifecta, the Iowa Rock n Roll Hall of Fame will be holding their annual induction ceremony.  The schedule of events seems quite promising and I hope Matt and I get a chance to view some of the celebration.

And for those not familiar with the term I-O-W-A Ocean, check out Wally Shoop and the Zombies here (scroll down to the bottom of the list for a listen). 

Wednesday, August 12, 2009


is not only a Carly Simon song.....it's what I'm feeling right now!!!  In September the Great Northern Printer's Fair along with the Amalgamated Printer's Association's Annual Wayzgoose will be held in Mt. Pleasant, IA and I will be attending all the days this year! There will be demonstrations on printing (even registering a 7 color job I'm told), bookbinding, and even paper marbling.  I've really been needing some time for myself lately and I can't can't wait for it to come!  

To check out some of last years awesome-ness (and pictures of me printing things) click here and here for my old post.

Monday, August 10, 2009


I'm pretty sure I definitely need this. And I need to form my own Occasional Print Club!

Great work by The Occasional Print Club via their flickr stream

Sunday, August 9, 2009

Big Building, Big Dreams

Many of you may know I'm originally from Ossian, Iowa and I still get my Ossian Bee, the local newspaper, to keep up on the news.  While catching up on Ossian news last night I perused the City Council minutes, to find out one of the largest buildings on Main Street had been donated to the city.  The Dessel building as it is known, has been sitting empty on Main Street for approximately 25 years according to the article. It is the second building in from the right in the photo above. 

Now this may not seem particularly newsworthy, but as I kept reading it stated, "A lengthy discussion ensued regarding liability, insurance, maintenance, possible uses for the structure, and possible demolition of the building."  Now this got me a little riled up, as I have been dreaming more or less about having my own little letterpress business in this building and residing in the second floor.  Now, this is obviously just a dream at this point, but now that they are talking demolition, it really breaks my heart. 

An excerpt from Reflections of a Golden Era, Ossian, Iowa shares this about the Dessel building: 
"The year 1898 found much new construction in Ossian.  F. W. [Dessel] started the construction of the "Dessel Building." This building is 42' x 100', 2 stories in height with a brick and stone front. The huge limestone blocks which are at the 4 corners of the basement area were quarried from the Fred J. Figge quarry south of Ossian in the Silver Springs area."  It goes on to mention that the walls are 6 bricks wide and the Dessel business closed in 1962.  

I would really hate to see the building go.  It could be utilized in so many different ways.  I just hope the city reconsiders or perhaps sells it off to someone wanting to utilize and preserve the building. 

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Tea and Tarts

Last week I decided to have a little lady pampering party for a few friends. When I was planning the party, I really wanted to use these vintage display pieces that I had found recently. They are kind of like mini cupcake trees, but I haven't seen them anywhere else.
I began searching for dessert recipes that would be appropriate for the display tree and thought; Tarts! They'd be perfect. I eventually found a recipe on the Joy of Baking for Shortbread Tarts with Cream Filling, using blueberries for the topping, and they were delicious!

Here is the recipe:

1 cup (227 grams) (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1/2 cup (72 grams) confectioners (powdered or icing) sugar
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1 1/2 cups (210 grams) all purpose flour
2 tablespoons (30 grams) cornstarch or rice flour
1/8 teaspoon salt

1-8-oz. (227 grams) package cream cheese - softened
1-14 ounce (396 grams) can sweetened condensed milk
1/3 cup (80 ml) lemon juice (freshly squeezed)
Zest of one lemon
1 teaspoon (4 grams) pure vanilla extract

Any combination of berries (blueberries, strawberries, blackberries, raspberries) or other fruit such as slices of kiwi.

Shortbread Tarts: Lightly butter, or spray with a nonstick vegetable spray, 36 miniature muffin tins (approximately 2 inch (5 cm) in diameter). Set aside. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (170 degrees C) and place rack in the center of the oven.
In the bowl of your electric mixer, or with a hand mixer, cream the butter and sugar together (approximately two minutes). Beat in the vanilla extract. Add the flour, cornstarch and salt and mix just until incorporated.

Divide the dough into 36 even pieces and place one ball of dough in the center of each muffin tin. With your fingertips, press the dough up the sides of the individual muffin tin so there is an indentation in the center. Once filled, place the tart pan, with the unbaked shells, in the freezer for about 10 minutes so the shortbread can become firm. (This will help to prevent the shortbread from puffing up during baking.)

Bake for approximately 18 - 20 minutes or until lightly browned. About halfway through the baking time, lightly prick the bottom of each shortbread, with the tines of a fork, if they have puffed up. Check again after another five minutes and prick again if needed. Once they are fully baked, remove from oven and place on a wire rack to cool. When completely cooled, remove the tarts from the pan. (These may be made in large quantities and frozen.)

CREAM CHEESE FILLING: In your food processor or electric mixer, beat the cream cheese until fluffy. Add the condensed milk, lemon juice, zest, and vanilla and process until smooth. Transfer the filling to a bowl, cover, and refrigerate until serving time. It is best to make the filling at least a day in advance to give it time to become firm and for all the flavors to mingle.
To serve: Using two small spoons, fill the tart shells with the cream cheese filling. The filled tart shells can be made several hours in advance and refrigerated. Just before serving top with fresh berries or cut up fruit.
Makes about 36 - 2 inch (5 cm) miniature tarts.

Friday, July 31, 2009

I guess I'm a bad blogger....

but look I updated my etsy shop!

And I promise more posts coming soon! There are lots of projects on the horizon.

Thursday, July 9, 2009


I just paused from my internet life, and saw a commercial on Ovation TV for what looks to be an awesome series called "American Revolutionaries." They will be featuring some great musicians, from Sarah Vaughn to Chuck Berry (hence the name of this post). Not only does the series look good, I love their graphics! The saturated illustration on top of the black and white photo and the great use of type, its love all over. To check out a schedule of the American Revoluntionaries series, click here.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009


Well I think I've finally recovered from the Des Moines Art Festival! It was a long and pretty warm weekend, but overall I had a good time. All my preparations and planning finally went into full swing.
I saw a lot of great people and had a lot of help from my family and friends (thanks you guys!!!!). I couldn't have done it without you.
Since I was one of the Iowa Emerging Artists, I was required to do a demonstration during the weekend festivities. My prints are generally printed with my Nolan proof press, but due to its weight, I decided to just print by hand. Thanks to Grant for his lovely "arty" photos :)
I brought a bunch of my tools and even had the linocut locked up in a galley to show during my demo. I had quite a few people stop by and hope they enjoyed learning a little more about printmaking.

Monday, June 22, 2009

Process Ladder

Process Ladder
Originally uploaded by frank-chimero
I love the work of Frank Chimero and I think this illustration is great. Reminds me of our process books in Advanced Graphic Design, there to show the process.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Awesome Fabric Flowers

flowers to wear
Originally uploaded by calamity kim
Aren't these beautiful!?!!! I've been wanting to make some fabric flowers forever now and I'm totally in love with these. Check out the tutorial at Calamity Kim.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Put a Record on...

Likewise, this is also hilarious. Especially with the vast amounts of records spewing from our house.

Via Printeresting

A Tiny Press

This was too great not to post!

via Printeresting

Monday, June 15, 2009

Hometown Vintage Style

In postcards that is. Over Memorial Day weekend, Matt and I spent some time in Okoboji, Iowa at their various flea markets and antique shows/shops. We go antiquing quite frequently, but I've never really found any memorablia from my hometown, mostly due to the fact that Ossian is only home to 850 people.

Well in Okoboji I ended up purusing the booth of a woman with about a zillion postcards. She had the Iowa postcards separated by town and to my surprise found not only one, but three postcards from Ossian.

I guessing the top one was a stock "Good Luck" postcard, with the gold painted on later for which ever town wanted them.

The middle postcard has a house that looks very familiar, but has no clues as to its location. The writer indicates "I suppose you know this house without me telling you." Too bad you didn't tell me. I think it is a house on E Broadway, near the railroad tracks, but I'm not certain.

The colored house at the bottom I think is actually now on what is known as Becker Ave. The house still stands there and is home to some former neighbors. They worked on restoring the house and they might have even had a copy of this postcard, as the paint scheme is very similar to what it is painted now.

Any Ossianites out there recognize these homes? Do they still stand? Am I correct in their location?

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Letterpress Set-up

When I describe my interest in letterpress, many people have lots of questions and can't really visualize the process. Today I finished up printing some new business cards and thought it would be a good opportunity to "show off" my set-up.

For my business cards, I started out designing in InDesign. Once finished, a pdf is sent off to get a letterpress cut. These cuts are made of magnesium and are reflected so they print correctly.

Mixing the ink color comes next. For my business cards, a dark orange was appropriate. This is where my background in painting comes in handy to mix up the right color. I use a Nolan Proof Press, so I hand ink every pass of the press. After inking the cut, I place the stock on the cut, apply the packing, and pull the roller across the cut. And then I repeat and repeat.

Since each piece is hand inked and pulled, one consideration to keep in mind is registration. Each color on a piece has to go through the press a separate time. In addition, the paper has to be registered properly to ensure proper placement.

There are many ways to handle registration, but thus far I've been using masking tape to eyeball the placement. Thus far it has been working fairly well, but tight registration does pose a problem with my masking tape system. I hope to look into a better registration system as I get into more complicated designs, but for now it works.
There's a short overview of letterpress. Hope you all enjoy :) Back to making more prints!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Where as all the time gone????

Obviously I've been a little pre-occupied to post any time recently...........here's a quick update of the past few months.......

I graduated in April with a degree in graphic design
ALT went to publication and was distrubuted throughout Des Moines
Matt and I went to the Ponderosa Stomp in New Orleans.
I'm still working with Main Street Iowa, but looking for full time graphic design work
And I've been busy busy busy preparing for the Des Moines Art Festival coming up here near the end of June.

Today I took the day off to work on some printing and such----found it kind of ironic that my finger nail polish looked all nice just to get covered in black ink :) But I like it none-the-less.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Freakin' Hilarious!

So I found this while perusing the Internets.......and it is hilarious!

artwork by Lawrence Yang via FFFFound

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

All in fun :)

So I've missed a few posts here now....which means I'm insanely busy!!! Last semester of my senior year is definately not full of "fluff." In the mean time, enjoy this little delight :)

These little baggies will make your sandwich swipe free. Would be great for the office fridge :) click here for more info. (5% of all purchases will be donated to ‘freedom from hunger’)

Friday, January 30, 2009

No post?

So I ran out of time yesterday to post.........which means I'm working really hard! Ironic for "Work in Progress Thursday." Lately I've been preparing my portfolio to go out into the "real world," which by the way, why do they call it the "real world;" isn't the life I'm living right now "real"? I'm hoping once I'm out of school the "real" world won't be so damn busy so I have time to do things for myself once in awhile........but I hope I find a job none the less.

Off to find something for Fun Friday ;)

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Take a Piece of my Type

Found this while purusing the internets today. The website, Type is Art, allows you to take pieces of typography and transform them into a little piece of art. Above is a little sampling of mine. Enjoy!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

New Talent Tuesday!

Time for New Talent Tuesday! I found this painting on Etsy, using the Pounce feature. I love the drawing quality and the vibrant colors. Plus, the cow harkens back to my rural Iowa roots :) Check out ErinGoPaint's store here.