Tag Archive for 'unique'

Target: Design United

Earlier this year we were asked to participate in Target’s Design United campaign. Target made use of the massive street level windows of their corporate location to showcase their bullseye logo as interpreted by 51 local artists. We were thrilled to be included and submitted a dozen prints for them to choose from. The display was up from April to October in downtown Minneapolis.

Our process started with a hand drawn mehndi inspired pattern that we scanned in and cleaned up to create a photopolymer plate. We also created a plate of the solid Target logo which we used to lay down some background colors, allowing us to utilize the transparent nature of the inks and achieve some great overprinting. Our pressman went to town and applied most of the inks by hand directly to the plates or paper, resulting in dozens of completely unique pieces. Some of our favorites are below, along with some shots of the installation that we took while it was up this summer.

AIGA MN Design Camp Event Recap

Yesterday we posted about our involvement printing the materials for AGIA MN’s 2011 Design Camp, but we thought it would be fun to share a peek into the event itself.

Ben (Principal), Selina (Studio Director) and David (Pre-press) were all up north participating as campers and Sam (Designer) was on the committee running the event, so Studio On Fire was well represented over the weekend. We had a booth up at the Friday night Business Expo where people were able to snag a paper airplane and pet assorted samples that we brought to show. Keynote speakers, a networking dinner, a variety of workshops, collaboration lunches and late night bonfires quickly filled the rest of the weekend.

Keynote speakers included Peter Buchanan-Smith (Best Made Company), Jamie Koval (VSA Partners), Michael Osborne (Michael Osborne Design), Jan Wilker (karlssonwilker), and  Josh Kenyon and Colby Nichols (Jolby), it was great to meet each of them. Special thanks to the dudes from Jolby for stopping by the studio after camp and going with us to grab patio beers- good times.

Enough chatter, on to the pictures! David took some great shots throughout the weekend (on actual film!) and Phong Tran (of dblthink.com and official AIGA MN photographer) was gracious enough to share some of his photos, since we were too busy playing with wild cats to bust out our cameras most of the time.

 

 

Wild Ink Splatter Wedding Invitation

This wedding invitation design by Project o3 channels the lettering stylings of illustrator Ralph Steadman, (think movie logotype for Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas.) There is hardly any text on this invitation, just the most basic info. We thought it was certainly one of the more free spirited invitations we’ve seen and loved it for it’s departure from the more typical ornate weddings.

It is printed on 220lb Crane Lettra Ecru with black, red and light gray ink. The die cut belly band that holds the three cards together is printed with black ink on French Poptone Wild Cherry 100lb cover.

Fantastic Philatelic Wedding Invitations

These invitations were designed by the bride Nichole Tremblay. You can visit her at Coral Pheasant. We worked with her on the letterpress printing of her custom wedding stationery cards. Then we were completely amazed when she sent us finished samples showing how she put them together. What a labor of love. She tied the various sized cards together in a stacked bundle using a textural gauze ribbon with golden string to wrap the pile. She produced her own lined envelopes and outer address labels that are carefully wrapping the edge of a large A10 envelope. Then she painstakingly picked her postage. She made beautiful stamp collages on the envelopes using specially selected vintage postage, different for each invitation, but little works of art unto themselves.

The invitations are printed in gray and pink inks on thick 220lb cover Pearl White Crane Lettra paper. We printed all the cards together on a larger press sheet, saving her money in the letterpress production. Large script type runs across the top of each card with small san serif type across the bottom. We used heavy impression with a lighter ink density on the gray ink so the printing could have a more textural and salty appearance on the cotton paper. These invitations are a tactile treat. And with bowling at the reception dinner, who wouldn’t want to go?

Wild Air Letterpress Poster

This poster was letterpress printed for the Artcrank poster show here in Minneapolis, which opened this last weekend. Since much of this show tends to be image and graphic heavy, we wanted our poster to stand apart with lettering only. It is an excerpt from Ralph Waldo Emerson’s Considerations by the Way, 1860. The full sentence is actually, “Live in the sunshine, swim the sea, drink the wild air’s salubrity.” (But “salubrity” is such an odd word and just didn’t work well in the design.) The lettering started as a hand drawn sketch, then refined in Adobe Illustrator. We printed with a photopolymer plate on Crane Lettra 300gsm Florecent White at 18 x 24 size.  They are on display now at One On One in Minneapolis.

They sold well at the opening night and are still available. There was some confusion about them being sold out. They are $30, to be purchased at One On One Bike Shop.

You can also buy one, now for sale on our studio site as well. Cost is $40.

Vista Caballo Letterpress Stationery

Vista Caballo is a ranch retreat with a special connection to horses in Dove Creek, Colorado. We worked with Thinktopia to design this stationery system for the client. They already had a logo design and needed stationery developed using the existing mark.

One of the things often overlooked in design is the choice of materials. This is something we strive for in our own design work. Material selection can be a central component for building the look and feel of a brand.  In this stationery system we use a variety of brown toned papers to compliment the tactility of the letterpress printing and echo the desert landscape of the location. Kind of like making a color palette, instead we made a material palette. Each piece is printed with the same brown PMS color.

Letterhead is French Paper Speckletone Kraft, Envelope is French Paper Speckletone Chocolate, Business cards and Note cards are Crane Lettra Pearl White 220lb, Labels are Strathmore Soft White crack and peel stock, Journal covers are Fibermark Suedetex Tan 25pt with Smart Genesis Husk 70lbT gutt.

Richness of materials makes this stationery unique.

Sublimio Unique Design Formula Cards

Sublimio is a multidisciplinary design studio in Italy. They designed these cards for an engaging visual and tactile design experience.

We printed a larger message card and business cards. The message card is very subtle with a blind impression only on 110lb Crane Lettra stock. The business cards use blind impression on one side and black on the other, completed with black edge coloring. They are on 220lb Crane Lettra.

“Show Through” is a term we use to describe heavy impression from printing one side of the paper bruising the sheet and showing small distortions on the reverse side. Show through is an important consideration when a design will be letterpress printed.  The double thick 220 lb Lettra is great for a project that is a two sided design because it offers virtually no show through. Note that “virtually” is a key word here. If a heavy impression is desired, there will be some show through. Generally the thicker the paper, the more minimal the show through. But even with a thick stock, impression can knock back the impression from a previously printed side affecting its appearance. In the case of this business card we printed the flood of blind pattern first with heavier impression, then the black text side of the card with a bit less impression. Balancing this impression on a two sided design depends on the nature of artwork being printed. Talk with us early in the design process to work through these production decisions.

Bat Mitzvah Letterpress Invitation Star With Clips

It goes without saying, we like unique paper structures. This Bat Mitzvah invitation, designed here at Studio On Fire features two triangles with a hole punch that clips together making a six pointed star shape. The paper triangles unclip to open and reveal the invitation text. The paper is 110lb Crane Lettra Flo White 100% cotton, letterpress printed in hot pink and die cut into the two triangles. It was mailed in a large square Neenah Eames Furniture, Weave Finish, Pacific Blue envelope printed in one color on the flap.

Those little metal clips are something we get asked about a lot. They are called #2 Petite Fasteners, made by GEM Office Products here in the USA. They have a little point that pierces the paper and holds the sheets together. You can buy them wholesale here. ($7 per box of 100 clips, 10 box minimum) They come in two sizes – the #2 is the bigger one, the #0 is smaller. And no, we do not sell the clips. But if you are in need of some top notch Bar Mitzvah or Bat Mitzvah invitations we’d love to hear from you.

Chef Business Card – Mini Menu Format

This card designed by 3 Advertising repurposes the folding menu format in miniature as a business card, complete with it’s own mini envelope for presentation.

We custom duplexed Neenah Classic Crest Epic Black 80C together with Neenah Classic Crest Classic Natural White 80C to make a 160lb sheet. Then we letterpress printed silver ink on the black side and gray ink on the natural white side. The cards were die cut with a heavy matrix score for folding such a beefy stock. Neenah Classic Crest Antique Gray 80T paper was printed with transparent white ink and custom converted to the mini envelopes.

Iron Beast Poster – Toys In The Attic Show

This is our letterpress poster for the Toys In The Attic show opening at the Soo Visual Arts Center on Dec 4th from 6 to 9PM. The show features both custom toys and toy inspired posters. Proceeds benefit Toys For Tots. Hey, that’s tomorrow night! We hope to see you there.

These beasts are in fact our toys. The graphic beasts are constructed from various press parts and form into a crest that commemorates ten years of printing here at Studio On Fire. The dog latin phrase reads “Iron Beasts Make Great Beauty”. It is printed in fluorescent and dark silver inks on Crane Lettra Flo White 220lbC at 13 x 13 size.

It was ten years ago this month back in 1999 that the first C&P was lowered into the then basement studio. More to come on our own ten year anniversary party soon.

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Letterpress Poster Edition for Thinktopia

Thinktopia®, an idea generation company for some of today’s leading brands, commissioned this striking poster from illustrator Federico Jordan. Federico explains “The skull reflects our existence and interior vision: our vanitas.” He created this image for Thinktopia that explores the Shakespearian Yorick, San Jerónimo and mesoamerican skull racks called Tzompantli. There is an article on the back of the poster from Patrick Hanlon at Thinktopia that speaks about branding. (This poster print will serve Thinktopia as a new business tool – a mailing to prospective clients) More companies could learn from this – send out something cool to start a good conversation. We would say that an illustrated letterpress print is guaranteed way to get someones attention.

The 18 x 23 size poster is printed letterpress in four colors on Crane Lettra Pearl White cotton stock in both 110 and 220lb thicknesses on our Heidelberg Cylinder – quite possibly one of the most difficult jobs run in our shop recently. It was difficult because of the amount large areas of solid color, the thickness and size of the stock, and the tight registration. There is no overprinting of any of the colors, so all four color plates lock into each other with little forgiveness for shifts in register created by sheet distortion. Sheet distortion is physical stretching of the paper created under heavy impression. Each pass through the press creates slightly more distortion. So by the time we got to color number four, there was some colorful language as well. The 110lb stock ran pretty well but the 220lb stock is a bear to auto feed – especially five passes through the press.

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Eight Hour Day Letterpress Holiday Card

Not that a heart felt email blast or animated web message for the holidays isn’t all well and good, but as you may have guessed we are suckers for a good old fashioned ink on paper. The next few days, we’ll show some previous custom holiday projects we’ve letterpress printed in the hopes of inspiring your own letterpress holiday projects. The holiday card seems to be one of those notorious last minute tasks for creative types. We are already heavily into estimating custom cards for many designers. And as much as we love rushing last minute projects, earlier is always better and leaves many more production options available. Word to the wise, ask us early for an estimate on your project.

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Who says typographic characters don’t make delightful tree ornaments? This card was designed by Katie and Nate over at Eight Hour Day. The green combined with hot pink makes a unique holiday color combo. The card was die cut to produce two parts for a desktop Christmas tree, to be decorated further with objects on your desktop. It was letterpress printed on thick Fox River Blotter stock from Neenah Paper. Since the paper is produced without any surface sizing the blotter sheet has a more mottled appearance in how the textured surface accepts a large solid ink area like the green tree. This gives the printed piece some additional tactile quality. Fa la la la la, ooolala.

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