It's easy to say that letterpress printing leaves an impression, but perhaps the most remarkable thing about the process, which dates back to Gutenberg's original invention in 1440, is that much of the equipment in use today dates back to the first half of the 20th Century. Los Angeles's International Printing Museum is home to the largest collection of printing equipment in America, "emphasizing the history of letterpress printing and typecasting from Gutenberg to Vandercook."
They've turned to Kickstarter in an effort "to rescue a collection of approximately 100 full fonts of antique Ludlow Typecasting matrices, [and] catalog & organize the fonts into our working collection & digitize Ludlow Type Specimen books with notes on available fonts for letterpress projects."
Along with the Museum's other metal, wood type fonts, these matrices will be available for casting type to be used by museum patrons, graphic designers & letterpress printers nationally for all kinds of projects including letterpress poster and business card printing, invitation and greeting card printing projects and creative jewelry making and art projects. We will also develop and offer training and classes on Ludlow operation and maintenance to ensure Ludlow's legacy. The success of the project would make this the largest active collection of hot metal type in the world available to the public.
The beautifully-executed video is absolutely worth watching. On one hand, I wish every Kickstarter project put half as much effort into producing their videos; on the other hand, it would stand out as a nice promotional piece in any context.
Honestly, I was tempted to pull a dozen screengrabs to post as images here...
You heard the man, Support the Ludlow Project on Kickstarter!