Printing

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.

Letterpress 2: Setting Type

with Erin Maurelli
Thursdays, December 1, 8; 6–9pm 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”

Art Practice Circle: December

with Laura Brown
Monday, December 5; 7–8:30pm CT

Art Practice Circle meets virtually and offers a friendly community space to listen and share about artmaking. The benefits of connecting with fellow makers are multiple: to inspire and encourage one another, to be an audience for one another’s work and creative process, and to move our work forward by talking about it out loud. This monthly gathering will provide time for each person to share about their work—a particular work in progress, an idea that needs exploring, or a struggle with a specific work—as well as a conversation about what inspires us and strategies for tracking progress.  Recommended for those who practice some form of book arts (book/paper/print) or related process (such as calligraphy, papercutting, marbling, etc.). Continue reading “Art Practice Circle: December”

Holiday Hand-Carved Stamps

with Hope Amico
Wednesdays: December 7, 14; 4:30–6:30pm CT

Whatever you celebrate, a handmade card is a treasure! Carving your own stamps means you can make a beautiful variety of designs for a special “hello” on any occasion. In this two-session virtual workshop, learn the basics of carving stamps safely and create both a large central design and modular accent images. Then, use these stamps to create mailable cards for any occasion. Instruction will cover strategies for using patterns and other techniques to make the most of your supplies. Consider registering yourself and a friend or family member and make festive notes together! Continue reading “Holiday Hand-Carved Stamps”

Screen Print: Cards

with Michelle Lee Lagerroos and Kirsten Olson
Thursday, December 8; 6–9pm CT

Get familiar with MCBA’s screen printing studio and print your unique design on a set of holiday cards! In this in-person workshop, learn the basics of screen printing using hand-drawn artwork, cut-paper stencils, and darkroom techniques. Instruction will cover design, screen exposure, ink, and printing on paper. Cards may celebrate holidays, winter, or anything else you think up! Bring your sketches and ideas to the workshop. Each participant will come away with ten cards approximately 4.25 x 5.5 inches in size. Continue reading “Screen Print: Cards”

Letterpress 1: Printing Basics (December)

with Monica Edwards Larson
Saturday, December 10; 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, design and print your own small edition of posters on a Vandercook press. Continue reading “Letterpress 1: Printing Basics (December)”

Screen Print: Totes

with Michelle Lee Lagerroos and Kirsten Olson
Thursday, December 15; 6–9pm CT

Screen print your unique design on three totes ahead of the gift-giving season! In this in-person workshop, discover how to screen print using hand-cut wax paper stencils—this process does not use a darkroom and is easy to do with minimal equipment at home. Instruction will cover stencil design, hand-cutting techniques, fabric ink, and tips for printing on fabric. 

Bring your sketches and ideas to the workshop. Final designs should fit on a letter-sized sheet of paper (maximum width 8.5 inches). Simple designs are encouraged. Continue reading “Screen Print: Totes”

Letterpress Topics: Winter Cards

with Molly Poganski
Saturday, December 17; 1–5pm CT

Build your confidence with letterpress printing while making winter holiday cards with other beginning printers and MCBA’s Studio Technician, Molly Poganski. Simple backgrounds will be pre-designed with type locked-up in presses in advance to maximize printing time and to allow for variation in card design. Participants will have some creative input with ink colors and may select and hand-set a word or short phrase in wood type to print. Participants can choose to exchange cards at the end of the workshop and all will come away with twenty cards and envelopes. The focus of this workshop is on skill-building, community, and wintry cheer! Continue reading “Letterpress Topics: Winter Cards”

Art Practice Circle: Winter Series

with Laura Brown
Mondays: January 9, February 6, March 6, April 3; 7–8:30pm CT

Would you like to attend all four Art Practice Circle meetings this winter? Register for them all at once and receive a discount!

Art Practice Circle meets virtually and offers a friendly community space to listen and share about artmaking. The benefits of connecting with fellow makers are multiple: to inspire and encourage one another, to be an audience for one another’s work and creative process, and to move our work forward by talking about it out loud. This monthly gathering will provide time for each person to share about their work—a particular work in progress, an idea that needs exploring, or a struggle with a specific work—as well as a conversation about what inspires us and strategies for tracking progress.  Recommended for those who practice some form of book arts (book/paper/print) or related process (such as calligraphy, papercutting, marbling, etc.). Continue reading “Art Practice Circle: Winter Series”

Art Practice Circle: January

with Laura Brown
Monday, January 9; 7–8:30pm CT

Art Practice Circle meets virtually and offers a friendly community space to listen and share about artmaking. The benefits of connecting with fellow makers are multiple: to inspire and encourage one another, to be an audience for one another’s work and creative process, and to move our work forward by talking about it out loud. This monthly gathering will provide time for each person to share about their work—a particular work in progress, an idea that needs exploring, or a struggle with a specific work—as well as a conversation about what inspires us and strategies for tracking progress.  Recommended for those who practice some form of book arts (book/paper/print) or related process (such as calligraphy, papercutting, marbling, etc.). Continue reading “Art Practice Circle: January”

Print and Stitch: Make a Journal

with Ben Etten and Skyler Hawkins
Saturdays: January 14, 21; 1–4pm CT

This in-person workshop is designed to offer a brief introduction to two book arts processes—screen printing and bookbinding—while having a lot of fun creating a hand-bound notebook featuring your artwork on the cover! First, learn basic tools, techniques, and terminology used in screen printing. Create an image, transfer it to a screen, and print onto a few sheets of paper, which will be the covers of your notebook. The second session will focus on building skills in basic bookbinding using tools such as a bone folder, awl, and utility knife. Learn the pamphlet stitch binding and come away with at least one finished notebook, plus the skills needed to continue making notebooks using previously printed, handmade, or marbled papers. Bring your sketches and ideas to the workshop. Each participant will come away with 1–3 notebooks (approximately 7 x 5 inches in size) and a few extra prints. Continue reading “Print and Stitch: Make a Journal”

Letterpress 1: Printing Basics (January)

with Savannah Bustillo
Saturday, January 21; 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, design and print your own small edition of posters on a Vandercook press. Continue reading “Letterpress 1: Printing Basics (January)”

Screen Print: Photo Emulsion

with Ben Etten and Michelle Lee Lagerroos
Saturday, January 21; 10am–4pm CT

Get familiar with MCBA’s newly revamped screen printing studio and practice the photo emulsion process, from positive creation and screen coating to exposure and reclaiming. Each participant will complete an edition of multi-layered screen prints and come away from the workshop with the confidence to work independently at MCBA’s Screen Print Labs. Some screen printing experience may be helpful, but is not necessary. Continue reading “Screen Print: Photo Emulsion”

Letterpress Topics: Printing Hebrew Type

with Robyn Awend
Thursday, January 26; 6–9pm CT

Get to know MCBA’s collection of Hebrew type and practice typesetting with the Hebrew alphabet. This demonstration-focused in-person workshop will show participants strategies for setting and choosing text based on character counts, type size, and other logistics involved in the process of letterpress printing with Hebrew type. Share budding project ideas for supportive feedback and resource-sharing. Return to MCBA for Letterpress Labs to set type and print your own project with Hebrew type. Continue reading “Letterpress Topics: Printing Hebrew Type”