Want a one-of-a-kind card? This quirky letterpress printer is just the person to look for.
When did you first become interested in letterpress printing?
I first learnt about letterpress printing during a lecture about forgotten crafts in my final year at Lasalle College of the Arts. I’ve always been fascinated by old machines and the way they are built to last a really long time. I then went on to do a short letterpress printing course in Australia; that’s where I truly fell in love with the craft.
What was that experience like and where else has your passion taken you?
It was a pretty exciting adventure for me as it was my first solo trip overseas and I stayed above a pub (I think that was the only accommodation available then). There was no connection to the outside world as there was no phone network and my family and friends couldn’t contact me for more than a week. I had a lot of time to myself. That was one of my best memories. Whenever I travel, I’ll try to look out for print museums. I found one in Greece and it was like Disneyland to me.
What’s the hardest part about the job?
Working with old presses is fun but sometimes nerve-wracking when it refuses to work the way it should. Every press is unique and comes with its own quirks. Often, I will spend a lot of time tinkering and fixing it to find out what the problem is; sweet talking it, begging it to work, and finally having it start printing smoothly is the most gratifying feeling.
Name: Jacqueline Goh
Job: Letterpress printer/Illustrator
Letterpress printing was invented in the mid-15th century and remained the most widely-used form of printing text until the 19th century. It’s a technique of relief printing, or the printing from raised images. While it has since been succeeded by offset printing (especially with books), it’s still the go-to method for wedding invitations, greeting cards and business cards.
Jackie’s favourite things
Best places she’s travelled to so far
It’s almost impossible to choose a favourite as I have fond memories of each and every one of them. If I really had to choose, my top three would be South Africa, Greece and India.
Five things that make her happy
Hanging out with family and my partner, my studio dogs who keep me company when I print, exploring a new place, picking up my film negatives from the photo lab and a smooth print day.
Her art idols
Dr Seuss, Jean Jullien, Emily McDowell, David Weidman and plenty more.