Lyndsey Hunter, The Hunter Press
We’ve all been there. You buy something bulky on eBay or Gumtree but then have the problem of getting the thing home. But imagine you’d bought two old printing presses weighing one tonne each? That’s what happened to Lyndsey, though it was her husband who bid for them. “They are huge Heidelberg Windmill presses but he’s an engineer and wasn’t phased by their size”, she says. She spent a year playing around with the machines, contacting old printers who showed her the ropes and then she started taking on small jobs doing wedding invites for friends to get the hang of it. Things grew from there.
Lyndsey had always been interested in letterpress printing but what finally pushed her was her degree in design and digital arts. “By the end I’d spent so much time on a screen, I was longing for something more hands-on”, she says. It’s tough though. If a design starts as a sketch it needs to be turned into vector images which are then sent to a plate-maker to be turned into polymer plates (one day she’d like to do this herself). When the plates come back it can take hours to set up the press, depending on the ink. There’s a plate for each colour in the design so a lot of positioning goes on. “The presses are so old it can be hit and miss how they go each day”, she says and sometimes days are spent fiddling around trying to sort a problem. It doesn’t help that the presses are in west Lothian and home is in Dunkeld, but once their 300 year old cottage renovation is finished including a workshop, Lyndsey will be sorted. Her work is a true labour of love.