2019 Wells Book Arts Summer Institute

Wells Campus overlooking Cayuga Lake

Registration is now online

This summer we have 6 classes to choose from each week.
For full course descriptions, scroll down
For more details on the 2019  Summer Institute, visit our Participant Info Page

Week 1 — July 14–20
• Sarah Bryant – The Long Stitch: Form, Function, Experimentation
• Stephanie Carpenter – Letterpress Basics and More
• Kyle Holland – Creative Papermaking Processes: Positive & Negative Stenciling
• Rob LoMascolo – Polymer Printing on the Heidelberg
• Scott Moore – New Wood Type Production using historic methods & modern machines
• Joanne Price – Wood Engraving: Historic Letterpress Illustration

Week 2 — July 21–27
• Michael & Winnie Bixler – Monotype Type Casting
• Nancy Callahan – Book that Expand and Contract
Patrick Griffin – Digital Font Making: A Crash Course for the Ravers
• Radha Pandey – Japanese Paper-making and Natural Dyeing
Steve Pittelkow – Paper Marbling and Cartonnage: Beyond Square and Rectangle
• Brad Vetter – Lasers & Letterpress (This class is now full)

Week 3 — July 28–Aug 3
Residency option available for participants of previous 2 weeks – details TBA
Cost: Room + nominal material fee

Tuition for each week-long class is $1000 (Early Bird before Jan 15 – $900)
All materials are included in tuition fee.
Room and Board are extra.

Week 1 — July 14–20



Sarah Bryant
The Long Stitch: Form, Function, Experimentation

July 14-20, 2019 — The long stitch is a binding structure grounded in traditional bookbinding practices in Italy and Germany. It remains a favorite among hand bookbinders today for its flexibility, durability, and opportunities it offers for innovative pattern-making and design along the spine. In this course, participants will learn three traditional long stitch bindings, then spend the rest of the course innovating and experimenting with alternate sewings and covering techniques. We will delve into a number of materials for the covers and spine pieces including leather, handmade paper, wood, and non-traditional materials. We will be in heavy production in this course! Each student can expect to produce between five and ten books displaying a range of sewing innovations and covering materials. Among the books we will produce: travel journals in a full leather wrapper, books with flexible covers wrapped handmade book cloth, and books with wooden spine pieces and handmade paper covers.

Sarah Bryant is an assistant professor for the MFA Book Arts Program at the University of Alabama. Since 2005, Bryant has produced artist books under the name Big Jump Press. These books use analytical imagery and reference material to address topics ranging from archives and self-representation to population mapping and urban planning. Her work can be found in dozens of libraries and private collections in the United States and abroad, including The Library of Congress, The New York Public Library, and The Yale Arts Library.



Stephanie Carpenter
Letterpress Basics and More

July 14-20, 2019 — Learn historic techniques to create unique posters and prints in this introduction to letterpress printing. If you like to tell stories and get your hands dirty, this is the perfect class for you. This workshop will offer a thorough introduction to studio tools, ink mixing, press operation, typesetting, image-making techniques, and edition printing. It is great for beginners or those who wish to gain additional experience with presses and refine their skills. Engage with antique printing presses using vintage metal and wood type fonts to design and create an edition of prints. Learn how to combine traditional type-setting, relief printing, and other experimental inking methods. Participants will leave with a portfolio of small editions produced in the workshop.

Stephanie Carpenter is a letterpress printer, educator, and graphic designer. She is the Assistant Director at the Hamilton Wood Type & Printing Museum in Two Rivers, Wisconsin. At the museum she leads programs including New Impressions, an international, juried exhibition; coordinates the annual Wayzgoose conference; teaches workshops; and helps catalog one of the world’s largest collections of wood type. Her evenings are spent creating personal art in the form of posters, installations, and artists’ books using wood and metal type and hand-carved blocks. She currently teaches graphic design classes at Silver Lake College in Manitowoc, Wisconsin.



Rob LoMascolo 
Polymer Printing on the Heidelberg

July 14-20, 2019 — This course will serve as a hands-on introduction to both the Heidelberg Cylinder and Platen presses. Heidelberg presses are considered to be among the finest production letterpress machines ever produced, yet they can be quite intimidating at first. The class will work as a group to demystify these presses by using them to produce a small collaborative cookbook. The class will walk through the entire process of designing for letterpress with digital pre-press in Adobe InDesign, making polymer plates, printing, and finishing with basic pamphlet bound collaborative books to take home as a cumulative result of the week’s work. This course will be will be taught at Robert LoMascolo’s studio nestled in the woods just one mile away from Wells College. You will be shuttled back and fourth from campus allowing for plenty of interaction with the other Institute students, as well as a fieldtrip to Boxcar Press in Syracuse and The Press & Letterfoundry of Michael & Winifred Bixler in Skaneateles too! A basic understanding of letterpress is preferred, but not required.


Robert LoMascolo is the proprietor of his own press, “The Press of Robert LoMascolo,” located on Moonshine Road in Aurora, New York. He prints, designs, and binds books for a wide array of international clients as well as producing his own artistic work. Robert holds an MFA in Book Arts from The University of Alabama, and has taught numerous workshops as well as regularly teaching college courses at Wells. You can find out more about Robert and his studio on his website, http://www.rlfinepress.com.


Kyle HollandCreative Papermaking Processes: Positive & Negative Stenciling

July 14-20, 2019 — In this class, you will learn Western-style paper-making as well as multiple techniques to create imagery using both positive and negative stencils during the paper-making process. Through the medium of pigmented pulp, we will focus on several pulp painting techniques using brushes, squeeze bottles, and other utensils to produce different textures and levels of translucency. In addition, we will cover how to make blowouts, which involve the use of a stencil or object to cover up a freshly formed sheet of paper and a hose to blow away the exposed areas of the sheet, resulting in paper that takes on the silhouette of the stencil or object used. Students will walk away with a set of unique or editioned works of art resulting from hands-on experimentation with the creative processes demonstrated during this class. No prior experience required.

Kyle Holland is a visual artist who received formal training in printmaking, book arts, and papermaking (BFA, Memphis College of Art; MFA, The University of the Arts). His work has been exhibited internationally at notable venues such as The Center for Book Arts, the Robert C. Williams Museum of Papermaking, the Morgan Conservatory, and the King St. Stephen Museum in Hungary and is in public collections across the country. He has taught workshops at Dieu Donné papermill, the Morgan Conservatory, and MICA in addition to college-level courses in book arts and papermaking at Cleveland Institute of Art and The University of the Arts respectively.



Joanne Price
Wood Engraving: Historic Letterpress Illustration

July 14-20, 2019 — Wood engraving creates delicate, fine details with bold woodcut characteristics, perfect for adding illustrations to letterpress greeting cards, artist’s books, broadsides or to create a stand-alone image. Learn to cut your own original drawings into end-grain hardwood blocks and print them in a limited edition. Instruction will cover all parts of the process – materials, creating and transferring images, tool sharpening, engraving, setting printer’s type by hand, and proofing. Finish the week with two engravings and a collaborative book — the perfect way to start your own art collection! All levels welcome — some drawing experience helpful, but not required.

Joanne Price has over 25 years of printmaking experience, from teaching University classes and specialty workshops to professional printing with Highpoint Editions (Minneapolis), and a personal art practice and business: Starpointe Studio. Price is the President of the Wood Engravers’ Network and an elected member of the Society of Wood Engravers. Price’s work is included in collections at the Guangdong Museum of Art, China; Hamilton Wood Type & Printing Museum, Two Rivers, WI; Yale University, New Haven, CT; University of Colorado, Boulder, CO; Vanderbilt University, Nashville, TN and many more public and private collections.


Scott MooreNew Wood Type Production using historic methods and modern machines

July 14-20, 2019 — This class is designed to allow the class members to uses historic pantographs to cut new wood type from a collection of provided patterns, as well as create new wood type patterns based on their own design. A portion of the class time will allow the members to explore alternate ways of making letterpress type using modern methods. Emphasis will be on allowing the class member to create new wood type to ll their personal interest using a combination of historic patterns, personal patterns, and vector laser engraved patterns they bring or create in class. A pro class CO2 laser will be available, as well as common woodworking power tools to supplement using the two pantographs to cut type. Both end grain and side grain hard maple will be provided. Students will be using the equipment in the Wells Letterpress shop to proof their work and produce prints of their new type and graphic shapes.

Scott Moore is a retired Industrial Arts teacher from Pickerington High School near Columbus, Ohio where he taught for 35 years. For the last eight years he has been using his pantographs and historic wood working machines to produce new wood type for the letterpress printers around the world and type high hard maple blocks for engravers. He holds two degrees from Miami University at Oxford, Ohio and travels to colleges and book art centers around the midwest lecturing on wood type history. As one of four people producing new wood type in the world, he also uses a 90 watt laser to work with printers to make new type, help complete fonts, and allow printers to have a little “Printer Candy” in their type cases.



Week 2— July 21–27


Michael & Winnie Bixler – Typecasting and Monotype Composition

July 21-27, 2018 – This course offers the unique opportunity to learn typecasting at one of the last remaining hot metal Monotype shops in North America. Students will use the Monotype keyboard, composition caster and the Monotype Supercaster to cast and take home their own text and/or a case of type, including fonts of ornaments. This course will be of particular value to letterpress printers who want to experience the full gamut of metal type—from keyboarding, to type casting, to pulling proofs. Please visit the Bixlers’ website at http://www.mwbixler.com to see specimens of the many Monotype faces available, or call Michael at 315-685-5181 to discuss questions. Students will live at Wells and commute to & from Skaneateles in Wells vans. Limited to five students; no experience in casting required, but letterpress printing experience preferred. Fee includes taking home up to 50 lbs. of cast type. Additional type charged at a nominal per lb. charge.

Michael Bixler has cast metal type and practiced fine letterpress printing and typography since 1965. He and his wife Winnie Bixler established their press and letterfoundry near Boston in 1973, and since 1983 have resided in Skaneateles, NY, where they continue to print limited edition books and provide cast metal type for numerous private presses and letterpress printers around the world. Michael and Winnie are graduates of Rochester Institute of Technology and teaches letterpress printing at Wells College.


Nancy Callahan Books that Expand and Contract

July 21-27, 2018 – Investigating the book form as a vehicle for creative expression our class will explore the theme of expansion & contraction. Book structures will be constructed that fold flat when closed yet take on a sculptural presence when opened. There will be books whose tempting covers and elaborate spines tease the viewer into opening them and interior flaps, pockets and hidden compartments that beg to be explored. During the week you will be guided step-by-step through the construction of a variety of unique folds and binding techniques to produce eight or more finished books to take home, exhibit and cherish. No previous bookmaking experience required.

Nancy Callahan is known nationally as a leader in the field of artist’s books. She has exhibited her work extensively in regional, nationally and international exhibitions. Based on her research and development of unique book and paper structures she has lectured and taught workshops to artists, teachers, and graphic designers from across the nation at such places as the Center of Book Arts in New York City, Syracuse University, Munson-Williams-Proctor Institute in Utica, the University of Virginia, the Women’s Studio Workshop in Rosendale, N.Y. and the Lee Art Center in Arlington, Virginia. Her unique books are housed in numerous special collection libraries including those at Vassar College, Yale University, RIT, Harvard and the Library of Congress.


Patrick GriffinDigital Font Making: A Crash Course for the Ravers

July 21-27, 2018 – This course is an exploratory journey through the many processes of executing the design and development of a usable digital font. Over 5 days, we will contemplate the reasons for making a font in the first place, look at what we need to make one, come up with a plan for the finished product, then start doing the actual work. This is an informal hands-on course with both whiteboard and computer lab instructions (using FontLab Studio 5 and Fontlab Studio VI), as well as plenty of one-on-one help.

Patrick Griffin is a founding partner and type director of Toronto font development studio Canada Type. He is also a partner at P22 Type Foundry. He spends his professional time designing type, teaching about type, writing about type, or helping others with type.


Radha Pandey Japanese Paper-making and Natural Dyeing

July 21-27, 2018 – In this intensive class students will learn how to prepare, process and cook Kozo fibers for Japanese Paper-making. After the first two days readying fibers, we will focus on the nagashizuki method of sheet formation. Kozo yields beautifully translucent and strong papers suitable for a variety of uses. We will dye some of these papers using natural dyes towards the end of the week. Students will leave with a strong understanding and practical knowledge of the low-tech and adaptable methods used in this tradition of Paper-making.

Radha Pandey is a paper-maker and letterpress printer. She earned her MFA in Book Arts from the University of Iowa Center for the Book where she was a recipient of the Iowa Arts Fellowship. She has studied Western and Asian Paper-making techniques with Timothy Barrett and teaches book arts classes in India and the US. Currently, Radha is working on a set of artist books about the political history of indigo and madder production.


Steve PittelkowPaper Marbling and Cartonnage: Beyond Square and Rectangle

July 21-27, 2018 – We welcome marbler Steve Pittelkow’s return to Wells for a unique class combining two essential components of books arts: marbling and box making. Students will devote the first half of class to traditional carageenan marbling, creating contrasting papers for use in an unusual structure called the boîte mansard, or mansard box, after the curved roof of many French buildings.. Students will create this box using their own marbled paper and will add their own “architectural” embellishments as desired while exploring other methods of construction.

Steve Pittelkow has been marbling for nearly 40 years. Over the past several years he has developed a keen interest in cartonnage, a French term encompassing both bookbinding and box making. Steve’s keen interest in marbling and unusual box shapes and structures allow a perfect canvas for his distinctive marbled papers. Steve has taught previously at the Wells College Summer Institute, the Morgan Conservatory, Cleveland, the Penland School of Craft, the Metropolitan Museum, University of the Arts, Philadelphia, the Paper and Book Intensive, and many other book arts centers and colleges and universities as well as locations in Europe. His papers appear in many collections and are frequently used by book artists.


Brad VetterLasers & Letterpress

July 21-27, 2018 – Letterpress printing can be so much more than letters pressed into paper with ink in-between. As a new generation of printers, our duties are no longer just to communicate, but to grown and push this medium into new directions. Join us in exploring new techniques and technologies in letterpress printing. We will be diving head first into some fun alternative image-making using the Vandercook printing presses from the Wells College pressroom and their brand new laser engraver! We will focus primarily on creating and printing  laser-cut blocks and the tips and techniques tied to this high tech process. Together we will explore the endless possibilities the laser cutter offers, and there will be plenty of time to try some brand new techniques that Brad has been cooking up! By the end of the week you will have a stack of your incredible prints and some brand new laser and letterpress skills to show off to your friends at home. Letterpress experience recommended, but not mandatory. This will not be an “intro to letterpress” class, there will be VERY LITTLE typesetting or press demos. Experience in Photoshop or Illustrator is a big plus. We don’t get deep in the weeds of these programs, but some knowledge will allow you to get the most from this workshop. THIS CLASS IS NOW FULL

Brad Vetter is a designer, artist, ediucator and letterpress printer. After studying graphic design at Western Kentucky University, Brad spent eight years honing his craft at the legendary Hatch Show Print in Nashville, TN, one of the oldest letterpress print shops in the country. Brad left Hatch in 2012 to start his own letterpress and design studio. Bouncing between 18th and 21st century technology and techniques, he continues to hand print rock-and-roll posters while also adding more digital design to his repertoire. Brad frequently lectures and hosts workshops throughout the US as well as teaching college-level design classes. His print work has been shown in such notable venues as the San Francisco MoMA, Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art, Columbia College Center for Book and Paper, and the Danish Museum of Media.