Samphire Arts

Archive for June 2011

This print was cut after I had a few thoughts about how I perceive my imagination and sometimes my defiance. How people all over the world face various atrocities in their respective country’s, homes and often by their own people etc. It made me think about how amazing the human mind, psychology or heart is. I started thinking about how we have imprisoned people who have stood up for their rights and the rights of others, how people just go missing or get in to trouble for speaking their mind and writing what they believe in (the likes of Ai Weiwei, Hu Jia, Nien Cheng, Aung San Suu Kyi, Parvin Ardalan among so many more!).

But what I find amazing is that you can imprison a person, torture them and hurt them in many ways than one but you cannot exactly hold their minds captive or at least, not for long. In fact, I believe you cannot (fully) restrict their mind and will (unless they let you?). I truly believe our abilities in terms of our imagination, our mind can wander and still be free even when you keep our bodies captive.

We may be restricted by our social, religious or political constraints, but we are and never will be truly imprisoned. And as long as people believe and exercise their right to imagine, create and build, keep alive memories and works of those who struggled and lost their lives and those who are still under some sort of oppression, they will continue to live on in our hearts and mind. No wonder we are declared dead only after the brain gives in…

So, you can lock us up wherever you may seem fit but only we can truly imprison ourselves…

Thank you for looking!

xx

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all artwork + copy © fatima jamadar
Caged Birds ©  Maya Angelou

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This is a poem that is very close to my heart. I think it is simple and beautifully written and possibly one of the rarest poems that truly speaks to me. It is a poem by E.E Cummings who has a wonderful way of putting things into words, stuff that your heart would truly feel but your tongue would falter at deliverance. 

I don’t feel there was any other way for me to express
such beautiful words and feelings other than by letterpress.
I think just like love, it is a subtle and an understated art,
not in your face or forceful, but enough to provide a presence (a beautiful presence at that)
and finally, it leaves a permanent, life-long impression
be it in colour or blind letterpress.
 
 

This is the project that started my letterpress ideas lately. I have always loved giving presents more than receiving them. More so when I can make it myself or involve other disciplines that revolve around what I do on a day-to-day basis i.e art/design/craft wise etc. And in doing so, thereby making it as personal and as individual as possible. I used to get requests for special, one-off personalised gifts and seeing that I had been toying with the idea of a poem for a while and I had a birthday looming in the distance, I made this instead. The original poem is written in lower case (without any capital letters) or periods instead, he used parentheses or semi-colons. I changed it a bit but I feel his original way of writing it is the best way to read and understand/feel his passion.

Here it is

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I would like to thank all the lovely letterpress printers I have hassled for a week or two to find out if it could be printed by letterpress. Especially, Dan at Glasgow Press (http://www.glasgowpress.co.uk/), Mrs Margaret Hendry at Piccolo Press Ltd, and finally Cecilia at Typoretum (http://blog.typoretum.co.uk/). All U.K based letterpress printers creating beautifully crafted paper goods! And finally, thanks to Adrian at Redcliffe Imaging Ltd where it was finally realised albeit digitally!

Thank you for looking!

xx

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all artwork + copy © fatima jamadar

 

The music I chose for this particular piece is by my all-time favourite salif keita and the talented césaria évora

Here it is: Yamore by Salif Keita + Cesaria Evora (you can click on the link or right-click & open it in a separate tab/window)

Courtesy of Hulkshare + Chapero

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So, among my many loves, I have a huge love for Letterpress!

I cannot imagine a world without it. It would be colourless and most importantly, texture-less and that, in itself is a crime that cannot go noticed (or unpunished for that matter! To the guillotine I say!). For me to truly experience something, it has to be both visually and tactile (oh, and sometimes by smell! especially little goodies meant for my tummy!). I have a habit of touching everything, I have to constantly remind myself not to when I am in a museum. No, really… I stick a thumb under my satchel strap, easing it’s weight off and the other hand holds the exhibition guide.

Anyway, I have been keeping an eye on a letterpress machine for years now. It’s so tempting especially when recently a friend offered it to me for a hundred odd quid!! How do you resist the temptation of creating beautiful, tactile, paper goodies?! I’ll tell you how, live in a small place! Currently over-run by Arthur Roy Fisk (my beauuutiful drawing table, pre-owned by lovely Claire daughter of Roy Fisk, a Lincoln based artist), Bertha– My small but heavy Victorian press, Ben– My lil’ table for the digital stuff… amongst hundreds of books and little knickknacks I have lovingly accumulated over the years and stuffed into this little room! So, you see, adding a tabletop letterpress would be me literally bursting at my seams, so to speak!

And so, I decided to do letterpress without the ‘Press’! Yes… I cheated… But.. but… what can I do? I haven’t the budget or space (yet!)

A friends’ birthday was coming up so I thought I’d give a try… and this is what I managed… I know, it looks a bit pitiful but, not bad i think considering i had to physically press it between two boards to get any sorta impression! Takes lots of muscle this method… and some patience with the trial and error. However, at the end of it, you’ll have something like a letterpress…

p.s: I’d like to assure you only two metal letterpress letters were ‘hurt’ (actually broken in two!sob!) in this instance. It has been reported to the RSPCLP (Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Letterpress Printing). And they recommend, should you have any unwanted tabletop letter-presses, fonts etc give them to me to prevent further metal/wood fonts getting hurt (Including my nails, and fingers…).

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More trial and error this time with a pre-factory made plastic ‘letterpress’. Again, I didn’t have the right machinery to ‘press’ these but you can see the general outcome here…

All this was actually brought about by the thought of wedding invites and a poem I read many years ago, by Edward Estlin Cummings. I have been toying with this poem for a while and wanted to produce it by letterpress. Turns out, it’s pretty expensive and so I resorted to a not so old-fashioned way to produce it. (More to follow in the next blog!) For now, I hope everyone rediscovers this beautiful art of letterpress and I wish to convince future brides/grooms to use letter-press for their wedding stationery, Save the Date cards or even to announce the new arrival of your lil’ ones post wedding dates and dramas etc…

Letterpress for me has an understated elegance- A beauty to look at and appreciate both visually and tactile.

 

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all artwork + copy © fatima jamadar