When I first studied letterpress printing in the 1960s, the standard was to kiss the paper lightly to transfer ink without depressing the surface of the paper. But during the centuries that letterpress printing dominated, even master printers were more heavy handed. It was common to see images slightly mooshed into the sheet.
As letterpress printing has been rediscovered decades later, part of what people love about it is the tactile quality that forcing the plate into the surface of the paper adds. This physical impression separates letterpress from offset and digital prints in a charming way.
I think some printers overdo this—hitting the paper so hard you could read text in the dark by touch. Once again, I’ve ventured away from the constraints of my formal training. I’m shooting for a gentle bump. The proof that Bryce, my printer, produced was exactly right. Beautiful. Physical. But not too much.