What's Next for Jot

It’s been some time since we blogged, but in our defence we’ve had a very busy start to the year. (On that point, can anyone else believe it’s March already?)

We moved from Luton to Liverpool on 30th December 2016. We hope we like it here because moving both home and business 180 miles across the country was not the most fun.  

We’re now in a lovely studio in a shared warehouse called ‘Northern Lights’, which is part of Cain’s Brewery in the Baltic Triangle. It’s taken a while to get settled into our new studio, but thanks to some handiwork by Dan we now have a purpose-built space, including a dedicated packing bench – Packingham Palace, as we are calling it. And print stands built at the right height for us so we don’t have to hunch over our hot foil and letterpress machines - bad backs be gone!

We had one small gap left in our studio. Literally, one small gap. If we were sensible, we’d have kept the space free for deliveries/orders/visitors. But we instead decided to fulfil a dream of ours and we invested in a Risograph printer.

One of our Christmas cards printed in Risograph

One of our Christmas cards printed in Risograph

Risograph printing is great for many reasons. But I think my favourite is that it was not originally designed to be used by creatives. You can mainly find Riso machines in schools and offices where they are used for photocopying large quantities cheaply and quickly.

As our lovely technician keeps reminding us, our plans for the Riso printer are ‘out of spec’.

So why do the creative types love it so?

  • Riso is similar to screen printing – the printer creates a master stencil (made of banana skins!) which gets wrapped around the ink drum. When you press print, it then spins round to transfer an impression onto the paper running underneath.
  • It uses environmentally friendly soy based inks.
  • It’s affordable, which is naturally very appealing to artists and designers.
  • Each colour is printed separately in a spot colour process, so you can get variance with the registration (lining up colours on one single image). As printmakers we see this as a benefit rather than a hindrance, as it means you can get different outcomes with each print.

Now that we have this amazing resource, we want to share it. We’ll be offering this affordable service to designers and creatives and we want to provide the service in a collaborative way.

To make this happen we need to get some colour inks with their drums. We have the primary colours, but we’d like to add more to make this a comprehensive service. We’ll be adding the colours over time, but like the impatience blighters we are, we’ve decided to try and crowdfund £600 so we can add a green ink drum.

Our campaign #CrowdfundingColour is now live. We’ve created some green-themed goodies, which are exclusive to the crowdfunding page. In exchange for a pledge to the project, you can choose from any of the print based rewards. Please pledge and share to help us go green!