A clamshell portfolio of 23 posters designed and printed via letterpress paralleling the events of each stage of the Tour de France.
Lead Graffiti is a letterpress studio in Newark, Delaware. We love letterpress, spontaneous printing-from-the-hip projects, the Tour de France, and good excuses to put ink on really luscious paper.
Tour de Lead Graffiti first ran during the summer of 2011 and it is one of the most satisfying design projects we have worked on in our 30+ years as designers and design teachers. We were interested in the idea of endurance letterpress while paralleling the endurance cycling of the Tour de France. It was far more uplifting than draining, perhaps giving us a bit of insight into how the cyclists can do it. Once we got in the groove and passed the first couple of days, things sailed along easier than you would think, given that we were averaging about 15 hours a day devoted to the project and right at 5 runs per poster. Individually we spent 345 hours spread over 23 days or a bit more than 15 hours a day working on Tour de Lead Graffiti 2011.
Our plan this year is to produce 26 clamshell portfolios consisting of 23 posters (each about 15” x 22”). Printed at Lead Graffiti, slowly & patiently via letterpress, there is one poster for each stage of the 2012 Tour de France (opening day prologue, Saturday, July 1 through Sunday, July 22) plus its two rest days (they can rest, but we won’t).
After watching the Tour de France live on TV each morning (roughly 8:30 am - 12:30 pm), we’ll choose moments (i.e. crashes, great feats of strength or endurance, surviving breakaways, who won, who lost, who got the Yellow Jersey, etc.) that made an impact on that day’s stage and create a Lead Graffiti style visual interpretation. These moments will be represented through the arrangement of wood & metal type, cycling-related objects, and other printable surfaces. In the end we will have a poster documenting each stage in ink on paper printed slowly and patiently via letterpress.
Additionally for the complete set, we will produce a title page, a colophon, and a page with descriptions of each poster. Each signed and lettered set will be enclosed in a handmade clamshell portfolio covered with Lead Graffiti pastepaper.
Money received through Kickstarter will help fund the material costs of the project, including the purchase of Somerset Textured White 300 gsm paper, raw materials for making the clamshell portfolio, and two new typefaces being made specifically for this project.
Feel free to ask questions or to be in touch.
Shipping costs are above the reward offerings, so we will just get you to send us the additional cost.
We will have the chronological order that our supporters joined with the Tour de Lead Graffiti so we will try to follow that order. We will keep an ongoing tally on our website to indicate which posters have been sold and which ones are available. We will also have images of all of the posters online, hopefully put up at least by the morning after they were printed.
Keep in mind that none of the actual choosing happens until after our Kickstarter project is successful which is July 4th. No one will be able to pick until after the Tour de Lead Graffiti has officially ended on July 23 when we have posted the last day.
We’ll post images of the previous day’s poster every morning around 8:00 am so you can keep up with which posters are your favorites as the Tour de Lead Graffiti unfolds.
At that point (and actually you could have made a request earlier if you saw something that was very important to you), we will ask everyone to tell us what they want. We’ll sort through how many we have of each poster and will award them in the order that their commitments were made.
Let’s say you committed to the “4 poster reward” and wanted four of the July 4th posters. You would say that, but then you would have to give us your second, third and 4th choice.
If you think you were going to want 4 of the same poster, just commit to 4 of the single poster rewards quickly. You’ll pay a bit more more, but you’ll have 4 of the same poster.
It depends on how things work out. We’ll start printing maybe 40 sheets and we only must have 26 for the clamshell editions and 5 for the individual posters. What happens to those other 9? Two people might come and work with us that day and each of them would get two. That leaves another 5. Maybe we blow a few when trying to do the really good copies. That may take up another two. That would mean that we would have 8 of that poster available in the end.If after we’ve given everyone a chance to make their requests known, we’ll see where it all falls out. Likely we will have more than 5 of most prints available. We are just guaranteeing that we will have AT LEAST 5 available.
Honestly, if you want 4 of the same poster you’ll likely get them. No one last year asked for more than one of each.
Absolutely. Nothing will be stated or implied that anyone that worked on a poster is anything less than an equal contributor. Last year we had a 10-year-old working with us and we worked hard to make his creative contributions visible. And his résumé now lists The British Library's collection on it. Not bad for a now 11-year-old.
seconds to go
Pledge $2 or moreYou selected
You will receive our thanks via a letterpress postcard cut from one of our multicolored makeready copies, overprinted with images from various Tour de Lead Graffiti posters. It’s always nice to get a little something colorful and unexpected in the mail.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $10 or moreYou selected
You'll receive 5 blank letterpress postcards, perfect for mailing to friends. They are randomly cut from Tour de Lead Graffiti makeready sheets we use to get the type, ink, and layout set like we want. Print quality, images represented and registration may differ in radical ways from the final broadside for the stage images included. Based on last year’s results these are really lush and colorful.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $25 or moreYou selected
You'll receive 15 blank letterpress postcards, perfect for mailing to friends. They are randomly cut from Tour de Lead Graffiti makeready sheets we use to get the type, ink, and layout set like we want. Print quality, images represented and registration may differ in radical ways from the final broadside for the stage images included. If a few are good, more postcards are even better.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $50 or moreYou selected
You can choose 1 of the individual stage Tour de Lead Graffiti posters. This can be chosen from the pool of approximately 115 posters (at least five from each stage) we will set aside from the clamshell editions. Priority for choosing will be in the order of commitments received from those choosing the 1 or 4 posters reward. SHIPPING COSTS are additional.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $150 or moreYou selected
You can choose 4 of the individual stage Tour de Lead Graffiti posters. These can be chosen from the pool of approximately 115 posters (at least five from each stage) we will set aside from the clamshell editions. Priority for choosing will be in the order of commitments received from those choosing the 1 or 4 posters reward. SHIPPING COSTS are additional.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $200 or moreYou selected
1 backer Limited (9 left of 10)
You’ll receive one of the composite copies that we are planning, which includes overprints of all 23 designs. Last year’s composite print had 103 impressions. It may end up looking like a massive pileup of the peloton—colorful, chaotic and impressive—but we think you will find it well worth your support. SHIPPING COSTS are additional.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $250 or moreYou selected
You + a friend will join the Lead Graffiti team for the day. It is first come, first served on picking dates, so some dates may already be reserved. You'll arrive at our house around 8:30 am to watch the Tour de France stage live (there are also two rest days) where you will learn a bit about cycling strategy, breakaways, jersey colors, switchbacks, sprint finishes, devils, human moments, etc. After the stage ends we will go to lunch, and likely pie, (both of which will be on us, usually at the Glass Kitchen in Newark) where we'll talk about what we saw and how we can translate it into letterpress. Then we'll head to the studio where our first task is to sign the day's prints to officially document your contribution. We'll spend the rest of the day in a creative group effort around our Vandercook Universal III, bringing that vision to life. Each of you will get 2 copies of the day's poster. NO PREVIOUS LETTERPRESS EXPERIENCE IS REQUIRED. It is worth mentioning that your work will be included in any collections purchasing either the stage poster or the clamshell edition. Last year this included among others, The British Library's American Collection, The Clark Library at UCLA, and Special Collections at the University of Delaware. The day might add a few listings to all our résumés.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $650 or moreYou selected
1 backer Limited (14 left of 15)
Along with our gratitude, you will receive the clamshell edition of the Tour de Lead Graffiti 2012. Along with the set of 23 poster/broadsides (essentially $30 apiece) you will also receive a title page, description page, colophon, and a few postcards cut from our makeready sheets, all housed in a specially designed handmade clamshell portfolio with a custom pastepaper cover made by Lead Graffiti. THE CLAMSHELL EDITION DOES NOT INCLUDE THE COMPOSITE PRINT (see $200 reward). You may have just bought all of your Christmas presents. SHIPPING COSTS are additional.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $850 or moreYou selected
Includes everything in the $650 reward + the $250 reward. We smell Christmas presents or maybe a graduation gift. SHIPPING COSTS are additonal.Estimated delivery:
Pledge $1,300 or moreYou selected
0 backers Limited (4 left of 4)
Includes everything in the $650 reward + one of the few remaining clamshell sets from 2011. SHIPPING COSTS are additional.Estimated delivery:
- (20 days)