It's the third Friday of the month, and here in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin that means....Tour the Town! It's our monthly art walk, where businesses keep their doors open until 8 p.m. and artists can show their wares for little or no commission! It's an event that's near and dear to my heart - I'm a charter member of the committee and everyone involved is a friend of mine. My framer, Julie Balson, is one of the founders of the whole deal, and her store, Gallery & Frame Shop, is one of the biggest supporters.
I'm so excited to be a part of the tour tonight via the Fond du Lac Public Library, where I'm showing my "Birches in Winter" piece as part of the "Greenfire" exhibit in honor of Aldo Leopold, a conservationist and author who spent a great deal of time in Wisconsin.
My husby Brian is president of the Gottfried Prairie and Arboretum, and they're the sponsors of this nature-inspired show. It's going to be a great time!
But this is an unusual tour for me - most of the time it's just me at a venue and because I've now got my portable press, I've been taking it with me!
Besides its affordability, the number one reason I was so taken with my S.C.O.P.E. backpack printing press is its portability. As you may already know, it was specifically designed so that it would fit in the overhead bin on an airplane. I haven't tried that yet, but I have taken it to two separate gallery walks. The first one was in Oshkosh back in December, when I only had my press for about four days!
I was invited by my friend and letterpress artist Kevin Rau, who owns rauhaus design + letterpress. His studio is in this beautiful old bank in downtown Oshkosh (which you may recognize from the Johnny Depp movie, "Public Enemies" - they filmed many scenes here!). I set up in the lobby of the bank - it was ridiculously cold that evening, as it has been all year - but we still had some brave souls venture out! It was so much fun, and people got to see both sides of the printing spectrum - Kevin's gorgeous vintage 1946 Chandler & Price platen press...
.....and my awesome 2013 Craft & Concept showcard press!
Everyone who witnessed the printing on both was excited to see how each worked in their own way - the kids especially! They're always so in awe of the "old" way to print - before computers (Imagine that! You mean people actually had to do this by hand??! ). :) I had one young guy so enthralled with my press that he actually contacted me for Craft + Concept's info!
I can't wait for more people to see the wonders of portable printing!
P.S. My wonderful husband braved the cold with me that December evening and took all of these photos. He's the BEST. :D