MCBA offers in-person and virtual workshops in book arts—from letterpress printing to paper marbling and everything in between! Designed for adults looking to spark their creativity and professionals aiming to hone their technique, MCBA’s workshops feature intimate class sizes and hands-on experiences using process-specific equipment, including technology designed and built in the 19th and 20th centuries, and artisan-built equipment made today. Workshops focus on building skills in a specific process, which often leads to a physical takeaway like a bound book, a letterpress printed poster, a screen printed zine, or a sheet of paper made or marbled by hand.
Teaching artists bring a wide range of education and experience along with a mission to inspire connection and creativity. Workshops are designed to balance lecture, demonstration, work time, and group sharing.
Workshops are eligible for credit toward MCBA’s Certificate programs. Enrollees receive a 20% discount on tuition. MCBA members receive a 10% discount on tuition.
Have questions about registration or recording policies? Check out MCBA’s Workshop & Studio Lab Policies and FAQs. If you are a teaching artist, you can propose a workshop here. Add your name to a wait list if a workshop you’d like to take is full. You’ll be contacted if another section of the workshop is scheduled.
with Bethany Rahn
Saturday, April 8; 10am–4pm CT
This in-person letterpress workshop offers an introduction to MCBA’s print studio—including key equipment, tools, and terminology—in addition to an opportunity to experience the satisfaction of printing a message through the hands-on process of letterpress printing. Get to know MCBA’s wood type collection and learn beginning typesetting with wood type. Learn the basics of working with a flatbed cylinder press, including operation, safety, and care while building skills using the equipment with support from a teaching artist. In pairs, choose a text (three to five words) and print your own small edition of posters on a Vandercook press. Continue reading “Letterpress 1: Printing Basics (April)”
with Ben Etten and Michelle Lee Lagerroos
Saturday, April 15; 10am–4pm CT
Explore low-tech screen printing methods without a darkroom in MCBA’s screen printing studio! Instruction will cover screen printing basics, navigating inks, hand-cutting stencils, watercolor monotypes, registration, and printing effectively on paper. Repetition improves technique as you print a small edition of your unique, two-layer design! Bring your sketches and ideas to the workshop. Continue reading “Screen Print: Techniques to Take Home”
with Bethany Rahn
Saturday, April 22; 10am–4pm CT
This in-person letterpress workshop focuses on setting metal type and building familiarity with printing on the Vandercook press. Learn how to navigate MCBA’s type collection, how type is stored and organized, and how to arrange it in a composing stick for setting a text. Training will be provided on line justification, kerning (space between letters and words), and methods for holding type together (or “locking up” a form) for printing. Procedures for maintaining a community type collection and print studio will also be covered, in addition to a review of basic press operation, care, and safety. This workshop is an excellent refresher and opportunity to get reacquainted with MCBA’s presses and print studio. Continue reading “Letterpress 2: Setting Type”
with Michelle Lee Lagerroos and Kirsten Olson
Saturday, April 22; 1–4pm CT
Screen print your own unique design on a set of 3 tote bags! In this in-person workshop, discover how to screen print using hand-cut wax paper stencils—without a darkroom. Instruction will cover stencil design, hand-cutting techniques, fabric ink, and tips for printing on fabric. Continue reading “Screen Print: Totes”