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Letterpress and Books Summer School


This course is now full. You may contact us to discuss alternative courses or be added to the waiting list in case of cancellations.

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Location Leicester Print Workshop
Date & Time Tuesday 20th - Saturday 24th July
10.30am - 4.30pm
Tutor  David Armes 

Coronavirus Update: This course will be running with reduced numbers and new social distancing, hygiene and safety measures in place [as of 6th May].

"Well organised course in which everyone made exciting work. Great tutor - engaged and engaging, hugely supportive." September 2018

Spend a week with artist David Armes using letterpress to create a small edition of chapbooks. (Literally: 'cheap book'.) You will think about how to use language, how type can be considered as image and the book as a simple container for narrative.

This course sits in a sweet spot between printmaking, poetry and graphic design, but you don't need to be experienced in any one of those forms. We only ask that you come with ideas and a willingness to experiment. 

Course Structure

Day 1
• Welcome, introductions, overview
• Demonstrate final chapbook structure
• Demonstrate composition and imposition
• Demonstrate printing on the Adana
• Participants draft out page structure and pagination
• Set type for image area
• Set type for 2 pages

Day 2
• Print image area pages
• Print pages 5 & 7
• Set type for 2 pages
• Set type for title and colophon pages

Day 3
• Print pages 9 & 11
• Print pages 3 & 13 (title and colophon)

Day 4
• Diss type
• Print covers (if on time; covers can be left blank if time is short)
• Demonstrate folding and sewing chapbooks
• Sew on test sheets

Day 5
• Fold pages
• Sew final chapbooks
• Cut and fold covers (if not dry or out of time, demonstrate and leave people to do later)
• Attach covers ((if not dry or out of time, demonstrate and leave people to do later)

About the Tutor

David Armes is an artist working with print, language and geography. His work is frequently site-specific and considers how sense and experience of place can be represented. It explores the ways we describe liminal states and how landscape shapes understanding. He works primarily with letterpress printing on paper and, through using what was once an industrial process, he is interested in where the multiple meets the unique, where the ephemeral meets the archival.

David's Red Plate Press studio is based on the disputed border between West Yorkshire and Lancashire in the South Pennine hills. He travels frequently for residencies and has spent many months in the USA in the past three years working alongside contemporary letterpress practitioners, thanks to a travelling fellowship from the Winston Churchill Memorial Trust and a grant from the Arts Council/British Council Artists’ International Development Fund. He has recently shown work in the USA, UK, Germany and Russia, and was shortlisted for the 2017 Flourish Excellence in Printmaking award.

Leicester Print Workshop 

Leicester Print Workshop is the regional development centre for printmaking. Established by artists in 1986, we are a registered charity, supported by Arts Council England. Our RIBA award-winning building is situated in Leicester City Centre's Cultural Quarter and is home to a large, well equipped open access Printmaking Studio.

We have over 30 years’ experience of teaching people printmaking. Our programme offers the largest number and broadest range of printmaking courses in the region, with courses suitable for beginners as well as experienced printmakers, delivered by practicing artists and nationally renowned tutors. Participants learn in small and friendly groups in our purpose-designed studio.


Online: You can book online here by credit / debit card or Paypal.

Telephone: You can pay by card over the phone during our opening hours (Tuesday - Saturday, 10am - 5pm). Call us on 0116 251 4174.

In person: Call in to Leicester Print Workshop during our opening hours (Tuesday - Saturday, 10am - 5pm) to book and pay by card, cash or cheque.

Pre-course information: We will send you details of how to find us and what to bring with you when we process your booking. 


Full-Print Members of Leicester Print Workshop are entitled to a 10% discount on our inhouse courses. Interested in joining LPW as a member? Click here for more information.