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Letterpress card featuring "Cephalovepod" heart-shaped octopus image by Phineas X. Jones in time for Valentine's Day!
Letterpress card featuring "Cephalovepod" heart-shaped octopus image by Phineas X. Jones in time for Valentine's Day!
359 backers pledged $4,263 to help bring this project to life.

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Cephalovepod Letterpress Valentine's Card SBPxPhineas

$4,263

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After coming down off the buzz from my last Kickstarter project, I was scratching my head wondering how to do a follow-up. I reached out to Phineas X. Jones, an artist I have been a fan of ever since he did a print commemorating Laika back in 2010, and asked if he'd be interested in collaborating on a small project for Valentine's Day based on his popular Cephalovepod artwork. He agreed and here we are!

With your support, we want to letterpress print a card featuring Phineas' artwork, adapted slightly for letterpress. The funds we raise through this Kickstarter campaign will pay for the paper stock, custom photopolymer plates, press rental, printing materials, and shipping materials.

The rewards for this project are pretty straightforward (again!) If you back, you get copies of the cards w/ matching envelopes. Unlike my last project, I'm not going to do add-ons for extra cards. This print run will be limited to 800 copies, which will be hand-numbered. If there are any of these cards unused as backer rewards, they'll probably be available later online along with any artist proofs.

Also, since this is a limited edition print run, I've tried to anticipate what folks are going to want in the reward levels. However, I have left about 100 cards unspoken for, and I'll plan to release those during the last couple days of the project so if there's some unmet backer level need, let me know and I'll try to accommodate it with that release.

During my last project, many backers asked about larger prints. One of the advantages of working with an existing piece like Cephalovepod is that larger prints are already available! Phineas has an open edition 10"x8" Cephalovepod poster printed on French Berrylicious available on his website right now!

Cephalovepod Open-Edition Poster
Cephalovepod Open-Edition Poster

In adapting the existing artwork to be printed letterpress, we had to decide how many colors to use. Each extra color adds a significant materials and time cost, so as we weighed our options, we decided to start with a three-color print and add additional colors depending on the final funding level

So we'll start with this three-color print:

Three-Color Mockup
Three-Color Mockup

At $2000 we'll add a red over-print to bring more depth to the coloring of the octopus:

Four-Color Mockup
Four-Color Mockup

At $3000 we'll add a yellow over-print to highlight the eyes and suckers on the octopus:

Five-Color Mockup
Five-Color Mockup

We'd love to print this five-color, so we hope you'll help us get to that funding level! 

Phineas X. Jones

Phineas (twitter instagram tumblr) is an illustrator and screenprinter who lives in Chicago and works at Half Acre Beer. See and buy more of Phineas' work here.

Eric Mersmann

Eric (twitter instagram tumblr) is a letterpress printer who lives in New York. See more of Eric's work here.

Paper Stock: French Paper Co. Dur-O-Tone Newsprint Aged 80lb Cover Stock. This is the same stock used in the Cthulhu Christmas card, so if you were into that, you're in luck! As I mentioned then French Paper is from a family-owned mill in Niles Michigan, powered by 100% hydroelectric energy (plus they make really, really great paper.)

Printing Press: Vandercook Uni1 (probably)

I'm still doing most of my printing at The Arm in Brooklyn. I printed the entire 3000+ print-run of the Cthulhu card there without a hitch, so I'm thrilled to continue to use those facilities for this project.

Printing the Cthulhu Christmas Card
Printing the Cthulhu Christmas Card

Letterpress printing was the dominant form of printing for a few centuries until it was more or less phased out in the second half of the 20th century. It's experienced a revival for certain projects like this one because of the tactile, hand-made nature of the pieces it produces. Today, it's recognized by the "punch" or impression it can create in the paper.

Risks and challenges

Although I've printed dozens of letterpress projects, Silver Bullet Press is a one-person operation. So if something happens to me (illness, injury, etc.) that keeps me sidelined for a month or so, I will have difficulty delivering the cards in time for the backers to turn them around to their recipients. I've attempted to mitigate this risk by limiting the size of the print run and giving myself more than enough time from the completion of the project until they need to go out the door.

Also letterpress printing is tricky. I've got five years of experience, but color matching, registration, coverage, and impression can vary. I won't send out a print I'm not happy with, but please expect minor variations between mockups, process shots, and final products.

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Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge $2 or more About $2.00

    DIGITAL SUPPORTER: Thank you for your support! To show our thanks, we'll send you a high-resolution Cephalovepod image that can be used as a background on your computer or mobile device.

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    Pledge $6 or more About $6

    SINGLE CARD & ENVELOPE: Single 5"x7" folded card on French Dur-O-Tone Newsprint Aged 80lb Cover Stock with matching envelope.

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    Ships to Only certain countries
    Reward no longer available 114 backers
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    Pledge $11 or more About $11

    ONE TO GIVE ONE TO KEEP (or whatever no judgment): Two 5"x7" folded cards on French Dur-O-Tone Newsprint Aged 80lb Cover Stock with matching envelopes.

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    Reward no longer available 111 backers
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    Pledge $20 or more About $20

    MORE LOVE FOUR LOVE: Four 5"x7" folded cards on French Dur-O-Tone Newsprint Aged 80lb Cover Stock with matching envelopes.

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    Reward no longer available 62 backers
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  5. Reward no longer available

    Pledge $36 or more About $36

    EIGHT LIMBS EIGHT CARDS: Eight 5"x7" folded cards on French Dur-O-Tone Newsprint Aged 80lb Cover Stock with matching envelopes.

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    Reward no longer available 27 backers
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Funding period

- (14 days)