Archives for category: Graduate School

Hello all!

So, I’ve done it again. It’s been a particularly busy semester and because of this my posting has slowed. This doesn’t mean that there hasn’t been plenty to post about. I’ve had some wonderful opportunities and experiences in the past few months so today I thought I would do a quick recap.

Let’s see – what has been going on:

I got to meet Design*Sponge superstar, the lovely Grace Bonney. She had a book signing here and it was a delightful event complete with champagne!

I attended the American Printing History Association conference in San Diego – my first time on the West Coast!

Hamilton Wayzgoose (remember the giant post from last year?) happened again and was again awesome.

In addition to these particular events I’ve been cranking it out in my studio and planning new Made by Good products.

So, like I said, it’s been busy. I know though that as soon as winter break rolls around I’ll be posting regularly again! I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving and I’ll be back on here soon. Enjoy these images and happy Monday!


Hey dear folks out there!

So, I know I have more posting to do about Renegade but in the meantime I wanted to let you know that I am now an official blogger for Graduate Admissions at Columbia College. Once a week, I’ll be posting enthusiastically and passionately about all things Book and Paper.

The blog just went live today and you can check it out here.

Hopefully when I fall behind here you can still check out Marginalia and have an idea about what’s going on in Hannah King’s world.

I hope you all have a wonderful weekend!

Alright folks, school is back in session! I am so excited for this new year!

As per usual once the school year has started, I have already gotten behind on the blog. But I am going to try really hard this year not let too much time go by in between posts! The good news is that I will be blogging weekly over at school on the Graduate Ambassador blog. This means that once a week I’ll be posting about the goings on of the Book and Paper Arts department. As soon as I have the official web address for that I’ll let y’all know!

I always love the beginning of a school year and I had this realization yesterday that it was my second to last first day of school ever. How strange time is!

Happy fall everyone! I hope you’ve had a great week so far!

P.S. This image is from Shorpy. It’s Chicago’s Lincoln Park circa 1900.

Good morning y’all! I know today is Wednesday and I’ll posting over on Nikki’s blog later but I just wanted to squeeze this little post in this morning while I’m thinking about it.

So, it’s been a year, well, over a year now, since we moved to Chicago and let me tell you it’s been one crazy year. My first year of graduate school was really challenging, living in a new city was really challenging, and being away from all of our solid Memphis friendships was really challenging. BUT we’ve started to come out the other side now, I think, and that feels pretty great.

Last night I went to meet one of my fellow student organization officers to get some little something done. That little task took mostly about two seconds since we decided I would do it at home later and we pretty much ended up eating tacos. Then we wandered around, went into the big Harold Washington Library, and then laid in the grass next to The Bean or Cloud Gate in Millennium Park. It was a lovely evening. It felt so good to be out and about in downtown Chicago.

Nights like the one I had yesterday + days like I’ve been having recently make me very glad I live here. I am so excited about next year. School is going to be fantastic. I can’t wait to dive in! I’m teaching an undergraduate course – PAPERMAKING! I can’t wait to introduce the hand papermaking medium to another group of folks. Plus, there are so many conferences and all that to look forward to – Hamilton Wayzgoose, College Book Arts Association, etc. I just feel like this second year will really be the year that we settle in and find our productive and inspiring place in the city.

So, yay for Chicago! I’m looking forward to what’s next!

Also, happy mid-week everybody! Nikki should be posting later today so be sure to check her post out here and my post over there!

P.S. I snagged the photo above from Shorpy. It’s Michigan Avenue circa 1962. You can see the Art Institute on the right!

Last year we moved to Chicago, literally, the DAY AFTER Printers’ Ball. So, I was mildly disappointed we had missed it BUT it meant that I had a whole year to get pumped for the next one. All of that anticipation was worth it.

So, what exactly is Printers’ Ball???

“The Printers’ Ball is an annual celebration of print culture, featuring thousands of magazines, books, and broadsides free of charge; letterpress, offset, and papermaking demonstrations; live music and dancing; and much more (quoted from the Printers’ Ball Facebook page).” It’s marvelous. I volunteered along with a group of my fellow graduate students to do demonstrations in our three studios, book/paper/print. This meant that I spent the majority of the evening up to my elbows in pulp as groups came in and out of the room. Over 3,000 people attended and over 2,000 visited the Center for Book and Paper’s floor. I answered a lot of questions and made A LOT of paper.

Before the night started though, all of us volunteers had a chance to check out all of the free books, zines, magazines, postcards, and chapbooks that were out on display. Needless to say, I stocked up! I grabbed a couple things from Ugly Duckling Press, a few awesome design magazines, some old issues of The Journal of Artists Books, and some random things that just seemed interesting. It was great and I’ll have reading materials from now until October!

On my break I also got a chance to walk around. It was so fun to watch everyone talking and hanging around with their awesome Printers’ Ball totes full of free literature and people walking by with their faces painted like zombies (oh yeah – the theme this year was IT’S ALIVE all creepy and Halloweeny in July). It was a great atmosphere of friendly conversations and sincere interest. There was also live music on the ground floor and endless events happening all night. I loved it.

However, next year I think I’ll be enjoying it from the ‘just a visitor’ side instead of the ‘crazy busy demonstrator’ side.

So, I gathered most of the images above from random places across the internet – obviously, I didn’t have a lot of time to walk around and take photos. I hope you enjoy them. Should you find yourself in Chicago next fall Printers’ Ball is a MUST.

Bon weekend you guys! Check back on Monday for more catch up blog posts!

P.S. I didn’t even tell you about Printers’ Ball Eve – a private (ooh-la-la) event hosted by The Poetry Foundation the night before the shindig proper. Drew and I went, again along with some of my fellow grad students + their significant others, to the new super swanky Poetry Foundation building. We ate food, drank beer, mingled, and watched a very lovely shadow puppet show of Lewis Carroll’s “Jabberwocky.” Twas very fun indeed!

Photo credits: the two photos of the crowds are from One Book One Chicago’s Flickr page. The image of the wood type is from bluebike on Flickr. The image of the PB sign is from gozamos on Flickr. And yeah the other two are mine.

So, the countdown is majorly on folks. At the end of next week I will have completed my first year of graduate school and it will be summertime! In anticipation of all that free time I’m going to have, I’ve been planning summer goals. I’ve really just got two so far. The first is to work through Kieth A. Smith’s Non-Adhesive Binding: Books Without Paste or Glue. The second is to listen to every album on Pitchfork’s Top 100 Albums of the 1970’s staff list. I’m starting with Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours and then moving right along to Neil Young’s After the Gold Rush. So, here’s to looking forward to a nice productive break that will be here oh so soon!

Also, finally the weather is sunny and lovely! I hope it sticks!

Yesterday in my Intermediate Papermaking class we learned how to make paper in the Asian tradition. It was a different process than the one I’m used to and it was so so fun and interesting to learn a new way of doing things in the studio. I’m going to go ahead and describe the process so, get ready for a long post!

We started out by cooking down Kozo fibers. We placed the fibers in a huge pot and added water and soda ash (a base that helps break down all the excess stuff not needed for making paper) turned on the heat and cooked the fibers for about two hours. Once the fibers were easily separated both vertically and horizontally they were rinsed and were ready to start being beaten. This part rules. After squeezing out as much water as possible we got to beat those fibers to a pulp – haha- literally! Papermaking is such a physically involved craft and it felt so great to just bang the crud out of that Kozo knowing it was transforming the material into just what we needed to form our sheets. The actual sheet-forming process is different than the Western style. In Western papermaking you dip a mould and deckle into a vat filled with water and pulp and in one scoop form a sheet. In Asian papermaking one slowly builds up thin layers of pulp on the screen (not sure if that’s the best word) and only after dipping your mould into the vat four or five times do you end up with a ready to go sheet. Once that’s done, the sheet (which is still attached to the screen) is carefully laid down onto a wet pellon (a sheet made of synthetic fiber). The back of the screen is solidly pressed on and brushed with water to encourage a clean transfer of paper from screen to pellon. After, the screen is carefully peeled back leaving a glorious piece of paper. It’s just plain super. All that’s left then is to press the paper and then carefully brush it onto a flat surface. Yesterday most of us chose to use the wall in our studio. The slow drying time increased the translucency of the paper and we ended up with a super delicate beautiful product of our labor.

Okay, I hope that wasn’t too much! It’s just so fascinating to learn all this stuff and it’s hard to resist sharing in great detail! Have a good time checking out all the images. My classmates are awesome action models!


Oh my has it been a month since I’ve posted! Time is FLYING! I’ve got finals this week and next week and then get ready for five weeks of winter break blogging awesomeness.

I’ve been working on a lot of books and prints so I’ll be posting that stuff soon. Until then though, I thought I would herald in the holiday season (a week or so late) with these super great vintage photos of department stores in Chicago in the 1940’s. I believe that they were taken at Marshall Field’s and Carson’s on State Street. They are oh so lovely and don’t you wish the holiday world still looked like these!?

Happy December you guys! Hope you have a wonderful Wednesday!

P.S. I think these images came from the book Christmas on State Street: 1940’s and Beyond published by Arcadia Publishing, a wonderful publisher, that puts out a ton of books of images/histories of American cities. If you’re interested you can check them out here.

Okay folks, get ready for the biggest blog post ever. Wayzgoose was a phenomenal experience. I met so many wonderful people who are incredibly devoted and committed to letterpress and wood type. To say it was inspiring would not be saying enough. I feel more excited about being involved in this world/this community than I ever have before and I can’t wait to get into the studio and make make make. So, prepare to be bombarded with photos and links.  Here we go!

So, to start with Hamilton was a commercial producer of type.  Starting in 1880, within 20 years they were the largest provider of wood type in the United States. This means that now, as a museum, they have a most impressive collection — there’s a 145-foot wall displaying “more than 1,000 different styles and patterns, ranging in sizes from 1/4-inch to 48-inches, all are housed in cabinet after cabinet, in drawers and on shelves.” It is a just plain incredible environment to be in. Anyone can visit and get a tour (and should you ever find yourself in Wisconsin I highly encourage a visit).

This was the home of the Wayzgoose wood type conference (because where else would a wood type conference be?).  My classmates and I arrived in Two Rivers, Wisconsin late at night on Friday having departed in the evening after our printing class.  We got to our hotel, a darling little place complete with its own miniature golf course, totally excited about the days to come. On Saturday we got up and rushed to the museum, ate some donuts, drank several cups of coffee, and went off into the awesome wood type workshop conference land.

Over the course of the next few days we would hear from James Clough, Paul Gehl, Sandro Berra, Rick Griffith, Juliet Sheen, Jim Sherraden, and Rich Kegler. Now, I’ll be honest and say that I did not know many of these names before the weekend. This is where the crazy linkage starts because these are all people worth knowing about. They are doing amazing things from founding type museums in Italy, to creating a typeface for the Tulalip tribe in the northwestern United States, to making incredible passionate art, to actively preserving the past through use of the letterpress medium, to researching old typefaces in a cultural/societal context. Holy cow there are cool people in the world. Check out Sandro Berra of Tipoteca Italiana type museum here, Rick Griffith of Matter a “full-service strategic design, typographic, and communications consultancy based in Denver, Colorado” here, Hatch Show Print (managed by Jim Sherraden) here, P22 Type foundry here, and Making Faces: Metal Type in the 21st Century a film by Richard Kegler about Jim Rimmer (“possibly the only person who designed and fabricated fonts in both digital and metal formats”) here. Expect more references to these people soon.  I have so much finding out to do!

I hope this wasn’t a too overwhelming post! I think the best part of this experience for me was the realization of the letterpress community that exists worldwide.  All of these folks know each other, work with each other, and support each other.  It was really an incredible thing to witness — all these friends coming together to talk and laugh and make. Really, it was one of the best weekends ever.

So, happy Monday y’all!  Don’t forget to also check out Hamilton Wood Type Museum here.

This weekend I’ll be heading to Wayzgoose, the conference of the Hamilton Wood Type and Printing Museum. I’ll be going to Wisconsin for the first time and hearing great people talk and seeing some great work and spending some quality time with a few of my new classmates. Enjoy this picture of wood type cutters working at Hamilton in the 1960’s (so cool) and have a wonderful weekend all you folks out there!

You can check out the Hamilton Museum here.