London West, UK - As I started this story I felt the rare sensation of writer's block. Surely the digital revolution has freed us from such frustrations with the ability to communicate in emoji icons. If the words do not come, an Instagram will take their place. Not that visual communication is a digital phenomenon, whilst an undergraduate in fashion photography, I was still standing in the dark printing. My birth date solidifies my place as a 'digital native', but I still crave the traditional craft that started my career in communications and PR for Kering, back when they were the Gucci Group and brands cared more about print coverage than digital impressions. Still a print enthusiast, I relished the chance to see a traditional letterpress in action and spent an afternoon playing with letter blocks with Inky Beard Press.
Almost 600 years ago, early printing press began and with it, mass communication was born. The 'kiss' or transfer of ink to paper was historically meant to be soft to signify a skilled printer, but today people seek the physical impression. Inky Beard aka Glenn used to print the Financial Times and now he prints artisanal stationery, invitations and runs letterpress workshops.
Perhaps it is ironic for a digital communicator to create business cards with a printed letterpress, but I fear my emoji icons are running out of ink.
From home décor and design to fashion, beauty, food and travel, brands ask me about the print vs digital debate. Our modes of communication may be changing, but the craft in telling their stories and connecting them with the ideal media, be it print or digital influencers, maintains the same. Indicative of letterpress printing, arguably more than ever, we seek deep impressions.
Inky Beard Press
Story Type: News