Monday, December 9, 2013

A very Merry Christmas to you all.

Oh Christmas,

it's been a big year in many different forms this year

for Bill and I and our family.

It's called Life

So this year I am making a big effort and getting back up in the saddle of tra la la la

which I must say I haven't had the urge for quite a while, but this year is going see me decking the 

halls with grapevine and stringing that tinsel around anything standing still.

My spurring has come from  a very sad event in our family

 with the passing on of my beautiful 15 year old nephew, which goes without saying we will miss 

him very much this year and always.

It's a toughy but a truism, but events like this really have put my your feet firmly on the ground in  

realizing to let go of projections or ideas that really don't make  a razooo of a difference.

For me it will be to just enjoy all the moments, as there are always numerous, all the irritating, 

all the imperfections and the funny moments,  

that you do have together as a family. 

To just be more mindful and in the moment.

Really see the preciousness of life

So from 


 we both want to wish everyone that supported us through the year with 

their encouragement of Hill End Press, we are getting there just beautifully.

We are on the move forward and upward.

 Our family, 

our dear friends, 

thankyou so much

Wishing you all

 a very happy healthy and sparky Christmas.

Friday, December 6, 2013

Bill Moseley of Hill End Press launches his 8 x 10 tin type exhibition called Nightshade.

Amongst printing our beautiful letterpress stationery, 
very busy Bill has also been working towards his exhibition which is opening 
at the
Dubbo Western Plains Cultural Centre
14th December 2013 at 2.00pm
on till 2nd February 2014

Tin types and wet plate collodion photography.

(Here's an insight to this extraordinary antiquarian photographic practice)
Discovered by Frederick Archer in 1851, became the most popular technique for capturing an image well into the 20th century. These images are 'tintypes' which is a variation of the wet plate process, where a thin negative is created on a glossy black surface. The image 'reverses' itself on viewing under direct light, the deposited silver reflecting the light and appearing as 'white' in the image.
Quiet Entrance - Bill Moseley 8 x 10 tintype 2013
Also known as 'ambrotype', this process brings back the magic of surface to an image and has attracted many adherents dissatisfied b the ubiquitous inkject imagery that floods exhibition spaces. As well as the rich and unusual tonality, there is a sense of random unpredictability (at least to the practitioner) who must transport his or her portable darkroom to the subject. From the coating of the plate, exposure and development, there is a maximum interval of around 10 minutes. Each plate has it's own signature of how the collodion was poured and sensitised. An historian could discern whether a photographer was right or left handed.
Remembered Fragment - Bill Moseley 8 x 10 tintype 2013
There is a different way of looking at cllodion (tintype) photographs. The familiar tonalities of a black and white image are upturned, red are seen as greens as black, blue disappear, and one is forced to engage in an all-over way with the image. That is to say, that familiar foreground, middle ground and distance tonal values are subverted somewhat, creating an uncanny sense of timelessness.
Not unexpectedly, the art of wetplate photography has been greatly revived not just by artists, but by history enthusiasts concerned with the American civil war. Civil war reenactment photographs (even aerial ones!) have been deliberately staged to create a suspension of disbelief.

Early tintypes had no such artistic pretension, they were the cheap polaroids (remember them?) of the day. They could be produced quickly and cheaply on blackened iron, the fixing image could be trimmed with scissors and placed in a cheap folded card frame.
Owl - by Bill Moseley 8 x 10 tin type 2013

For all that, it's a difficult technique to master and the chemicals are harder to obtain now than in the 19th century, (they're all 'dangerous goods'). But there are some modern refinements, the plates no longer have to be laboriously 'black japanned', as gloss black 'trophy' aluminium is available, as is acrylic sheet.
The exhibition has been inspired by the landscape at Hill End where Bill lives and Oberon.
By the bridge - By Bill Moseley 8 x 10 tin type 2013

A closed room - by Bill Moseley 8 x 10 tin type 2013
Early birds - by Bill Moseley 8 x 10 tin types 2013
As it is - by Bill Moseley 8 x 10 tin type 2013
Momento - by Bill Moseley 8 x 10 tin type 2013
Lost jetty - by Bill Moseley 8 x 10 tin type 2013
Remembered fragment 2 - by Bill Moseley 8 x 10 tin type 2013
Wanderer - by Bill Moseley 8 x 10 tin type 2013
Waterhole - by Bill Moseley 8 x 10 tin type 2013
Visitor - by Bill Moseley 8 x 10 tin type 2013

Tin types are for sale, please contact for further information
33 images in the series
Bill Moseley 2013

Monday, November 25, 2013

Ordering your wedding stationery, details and ideas to ponder.

You're lying in bed again at night pondering the details, the ins and outs of your wedding  day

and one of the key elements of 

your coming marriage will be your wedding invitations.

H o w   d o   I  a p p r o a c h   t h i s?

The very first thing is to have  a  f i r m   d a t e  of your wedding day and reception venue, it sounds obvious, but it will enable you to set up a timeline schedule of getting the ball rolling, sorting out your finances and having a list will keep you feeling serene and on top of things. It's your wedding day and you want the lead up of planning your celebration to be enjoyable and fun.

Average  lead up time is: 

Save the date to be sent 6 - 9 months prior the wedding day

Invitations to be sent 6 - 9 weeks prior to the wedding day

W e   l o v e   t o   s e n d   f r e e   s a m p l e s   o f   o u r   l e t t e r p r e s s   s t a t i o n e r y ...........

you need to feel comfortable and have an understanding of the finish that letterpress printing does, the paper quality and size (149mm x 210mm) 600gsm board and colour, it speaks of high quality craftsmanship with using the old vintage printing presses that create a seductive impression in the paper and a real sense of occasion.

The overall feel is generous and tactile which on our papers are like fonts nestled up in bed.

 Once you have the date and signed the contract for the reception venue, a good time frame is 4 - 5 months before the date, (at least 8 months if its a destination wedding) also to consider Save the Date stationery and particularly if it's a destination wedding or guests have some distance to travel, it will give them time to plan too.

All our designing, printing and plate making is done in house, so we are with your invitation every step of the way.

R e m e m b e r   1 0 0  g u e s t s   d o e s   n o t   e q u a l   1 0 0  i n v i t a t i o n s.

It will be a bit more than a half, as most guests will have partners, one invitation can also be addressed to a family with children. It is wise to have at least another 10 - 15 invitations extra at hand, some to keep for your own and others for add on guests.

When ordering the suite of wedding stationery you can keep the price lower buy ordering all at once or just choosing a one colour print or maybe having the same size invitation as the save the date (116mm x 166mm) this can be discussed and quoted on inquiry when submitting your order.

Be realistic about your budget, the clearer you are about the costs the easier it will be about making decisions. If on a tight budget consider ordering just your save the date, invitation and thankyou cards, your elegant tissue lined German envelopes (225mm x 162mm) come free with your order, plus an extra four for any hiccups when addressing them.

Setting the tone of the wedding. This is probably the  m o s t   s p e c i a l   m o m e n t  of working on your invitations because this is where it becomes personal. An impeccable invitation, is what will give your family and friends a hint of what is to come, it will set up an exciting anticipation of the day.

Take your time to be thoughtful here, taking into consideration such things as the reception venue, the colours, budget, formal or casual.

Think about the design, as family and guests will be more than likely to want to keep and frame your invitation as a  b e a u t i f u l   m o m e n t o. Is there a theme that you like, a motif that represents you and your partner, special gestures that you have for each other, a time when it was a very special moment for the two of you? Something that shares an instant understanding with your guests, something unique to the two of you.

This is where you can springboard from, there maybe a design that is suitable with just editing the wording of one from our designed collection or you may like to develop your own, with your graphics or ours with your theme. Or combine the two. Look to other areas for inspiration, sites like Pinterest can get the imagination and direction going.

A  t h r e a d   o f   c o n s i s t e n c y   w i t h   y o u r   f o n t   is a very important element in your overall design, particularly with the style of typeface, weight of the font and how many typefaces you use in the design as this really sets the tone, calligraphy and elegant or maybe a contemporary and minimal. Do you like ampersands, capitals, handwritten, vintage or classic.

Always run the invitation before printing stage past a friend, bridesmaids or family, check for typos and the design, another pair of eyes will put your mind to rest.

With addressing the invitations, if your penmanship isn't quite up to scratch it's truly worth finding a friend or family member where you admire their writing style to help you out here. To have that follow through is high on the presentation of your announcement. It's a special event and the finer details will make the difference.

We can recommend a calligrapher to address your stationery and here you can follow the themes of colour through with different coloured inks. If it's in your budget a grand sense of celebration is to receive a beautiful generous size envelope addressed with  a fine calligraphy hand. Truly romantic and guests will sigh at the mailbox.

"Lying in bed 
would be an altogether perfect and supreme experience
 if only one had a coloured pencil 
long enough to draw on the ceiling"  
Gilbert K. Chesterton

Photograph credits: Green Heart, crushed paper by Johnny Miller, embroidered A by, bridal hair flowers by, calligraphy by inviting, dining by, bed - pinterest

Monday, October 28, 2013

What is letterpress printmaking?

Ummm... to explain the  e v o c a t i v e   w o r l d   o f   l e t t e r p r e s s   printmaking in a nutshell. 

It's a metamorphis of highly trained skills, then and now, trying and failing, patience and determination, 

a crisp and luxurious impression,

within slow cook printmaking.

H e r e' s  a   q u i c k   l i t t l e   h i s t o r y   l e s s o n..

Moveable type was first developed by Bi Sheng in 1040  in the Song Dynasty in China. Although Sheng was progressive with getting the word out it involved a lot of labour in their extensive alphabet system so on the other side of the world a Johannes Gutenburg invented the printing press and independent movable type system...and a smaller anglo saxon alphabet.

A different cleverness Johanne knew that it would create a renaissance in spreading the thoughts and intellectual ideas to the world, rather than time consuming hand writing.
It meant the monks in monasteries could have 
more time to tend their medicinal gardens.

W h a t' s    m o v e a b l e   t y p e   y o u   a s k?

Well it's the individual letters and numbers that are either made up in wood or metal and assembled to create your dialogue and held in place by gadgets called coins and popped into a metal chase, then popped again into the press.

It all has to line up elegantly, be spaced beautifully and be enticing to the eye. 

It takes time and a whole lot of practice and patience.

Nowadays letterpress printers combine this with photopolymer plates, which means we can use our drawings and artwork, simply by making the plates in our darkroom.

You can see our tutorial on how we make our own plates
because we believe in thoroughly understanding our artisan industry as a whole.

T h a t' s   h o w   d i s c o v e r i e s   a r e   m a d e.

Our Gordon Platen Press is then set up with ink, all portions of the printing surface will strike the paper with the proper pressure, which gives a crisp, luxurious impression embedded into the paper 
on our 100% eco sustainable cotton german 600gm board.

This is where the patience and determination comes in, because no matter how
many times you have this experience of printing and your skills are honed in, there more than
often is troubleshooting, which ask any letterpress printer and they will nod 
their head in an agreeable smile.

The alignment of plates and equal pressure of the ink placement can try and undo you some days and it can be like a disagreeable teenager, only you can't send the press off to the bedroom, it's having the years of experience behind you to sort it out.

After inking up...

Paper is then hand fed one invitation at a time through the press and at the same time pedaling the foot up and down, concentrating while the large flywheel spins 
until the desired number of printed copies are obtained 
with crisp lines, patterns and typography.

One has to watch their fingers and it's all in the  r y t h m n.

 To bring out the best attributes of letterpress printmaking one has to have a full understanding of the capabilities and advantages of what can be a very unforgiving medium at times.

But  w e   a r e   i n   l o v e  with the process,
(custodians of the authentic)
both its cranky, frustrating and the seamless happy days of printing.


Saturday, October 19, 2013

There's a toffee moon in the night sky

I'm sitting here looking out the window
and the moon is the colour of toffee.

The bushfires in NSW, all up and down the coast
have been horrific. Many people have lost
their homes. 

My brother at Mt Tomah is ready to go,
the fires are hovering a few kilometres at the
back of their land.

He has cleared as much as he can the land
around his very special property
where he has developed and bred rare
 irises, camelias and many
very rare plants from China.

Craig has the patience of a saint, sometimes waiting
years to see his achievements in
developing new varieties of plants.

Fingers crossed they and others will be safe.

For myself today,
I got stuck into painting my still lifes.
It helped to distract myself from
the fires.
It's the perfect meditation.

And ate broad beans on toast.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Working Spaces

Hey, we are pretty excited.

Australian photographer Martyn Thompson whom has lived in New York for the past 25 years
has just launched his new book called 

Working Spaces

and he has included Hill End Press
in it.

We haven't seen or got our hands on a copy yet
( oh for living in the country)
we are  i t c h i n g  for ours to arrive in the mail.

So it's so lovely to have this acknowledgement 
of all our hard toil,
putting back together our
delightful little 1872 cottages & studio
here in
Hill End

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Brad and Anna's dream country wedding at Cobbora Hall

On Saturday 5th October Cobbora Hall became a magical place for Brad and Anna's wedding day.

This enchanted location near the rural township of Dunedoo, Central West NSW there is an old hall that the highly energetic and creative Penny Stevens and her husband Rob Ingram have totally restored back to its former glory.

It sits up on a hill with breathtaking views right across the valley.

It has been a labour of  l o v e,

 their attention to detail on creating an evocative space to hold special events, 
weddings, birthdays
can be seen by the photos
is a major success.

Professional wedding photographer has done
a beautiful documentation of 
this very special day.

We highly recommend this as a unique beautiful location for your wedding day

Y o u   c a n   c o n t a c t   P e n n y  o n  02 6375 1540
f o r   b o o k i n g s

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Preserving time

The colour is still vibrant but the jars are oh so old.

My sister in law Marilyn found these under her old unit
in Bondi in a brown box amongst all the coal supply
when the plumbing was being redone .

It's a very o l d  flat.

How old they are, who knows but they do look incredibly 
fresh particularly the peas and how
delightful to bottle peas.
Can you imagine doing this now?
Bottling peas.

It does make you think about how much we waste food
these days and to bottle peas would be far
removed from our minds.

The temptation to open them
and to know if they are still eatable.

but I rather like the idea of
the green peas just sitting on a shelf.

Sunday, October 6, 2013

boobock owls and tintypes

Bill is on his way, the tintypes for his coming December Dubbo exhibition
 are incubating very nicely, thankyou.


Lovely in largeness 8 x 10

a l w a y s with these antiquarian processes it's only for the very determined,
the patience one must have is saintly.

It suits a certain style of person, not one that
likes process as such, as it at times has a breaking point with Bill
 and for that matter

Because getting the technical side happily running smoothly
is at times frustrating because you 
all these images in your head
and it's being held up by
juggling and understanding all the ins and outs of
the technical side.

At times we are learning more about what goes wrong
than right.

You just want to get on with it.
Time marches on very quickly when a show is looming and your still in
the laboratory.

They are one offs , the chemicals are very expensive and you are very needy
in wanting a result each time, which is not always the case.

At times we have found the carry box that you develop it in,
has leaked overnight expensive chemicals,
this is when we start eating chocolate
in large quantities to 
make up 
for it 
g l u i n g   g l u i n g   g l u i n g

The recipe is for a investigative mind, one that loves
scientific stuff,
the magic of the unexpected,
19th century spirit of discovery,
 triumphed romanticism.

Saturday, October 5, 2013

Drunken Bees on the Landscape Floor is coming home soon

I t ' s   a l m o s t   o v e r,   I' m   s a d   t o   s a y.

I really so enjoyed putting this work together 
and it has been a most satisfying exhibition.
I felt good about fighting for the lament of the bees future
and forgetting about me for a while. 

My exhibition

The Wattle Room - Bedspread of Natural History

Dubbo Western Plains Cultural Centre.

One more week and my giant bee returns home.....

To be or not to bee

 My art is essentially  autobiographical, a colliding of two worlds.

From the personal to the universal.

Still life and the garden.

A divided heart

The threat to bees and food on the table.

Pesticides and organics.

You see it's all personal.

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Seeds growing, rain and bed

This morning woke to grey clouds and the feeling of not wanting to get out of bed.

Was I procrastinating about going and painting
was it just enjoying a small slice of slow time.

a bit of both I think.

It's raining now,
coming across in sheets.

I love the rain and never tire of it
it means all my seeds that I have thrown around the
garden are feeling sparky and wanting their
faces to see the blue sky.

I've thrown in Kale, californian poppies, foxgloves, dill,
sunflowers seeds in three varieties, love in the mist and cosmos.
they will mix in beautifully and create a harmonious balance
with the weeds and insects.

My wilderness garden.