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Aug 27 / Scott

Linotype The Film comes to Cincinnati

Last week I had the opportunity to print on my daughter’s Vandercook 4 proof press. We were working together on a father/daughter poster project  to create a souvenir poster for the Cincinnati screening of the movie, Linotype: The Film at the Cincinnati Arts Center (CAC). The film was presented in conjunction with AIGA Cincinnati, the professional association for design. This wonderful film, produced by Doug Wilson, documents the history of the Linotype machine and the hot metal period of printing.

We decided to make a poster to pass out to the first 100 attendees at the film’s showing. I decided to hand carve a 6” x 9” linoleum block with an image of a linotype machine. I had not carved linoleum in about 40 years.  I did some research on the internet and then transferred the design to the block. It took three afternoons to  carve the block. I also took on carving the logo for the film, and then used my small line pantograph to cut the corner blocks, inline stars, and borders for the poster.

A good friend, Greg Walters, did some research to help us find out when the linotype machine was first used at the Columbus Dispatch (seven were purchased in 1895) and at the Cincinnati Enquirer (which first purchased linotypes in 1886, and had a total of 45 in the early 1900’s). We decided to make the poster look like a historical showcard, finishing the poster with wood type from Erin’s collection.

Linotype operators in the Composing Room at the Cincinnati Enquirer 1941, image courtsey of the Cincinnati Enquirer

The screening of the movie was a success with over 120 viewers. Local college students from Miami University, Northern Kentucky University, AIGA members, artists and local printers who actually worked on Linotype machines all enjoyed the movie.

Erin organized an additional souvenir for the film attendees. She worked with the printers at the Carillon Historical Park, located in Dayton, Ohio and was allowed to use their working linotype machine to make “Linotype slugs” with the name of the movie as a gift. She has since become a volunteer at the 1930’s Print Shop.


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