I had an idea about how to include letterpress printing into my film for people to understand the method and enjoy the outcome, and to show the character and creativity of those being interviewed. I thought that instead of digital credits or information on the screen, I would get those who are being interviewed to hold up their name and credentials on a piece of print.
This was a fab idea until I got to Cotton Letterpress who print using polymer plates which are expensive and time consuming to get. It clearly wasn’t feasible to get them to participate in the idea.
When I went to film my first interview the person hadn’t thought about it, but we were lucky to have a forme that he had made up earlier and cards that he had printed for CD covers. This was just a lucky coincidence rather than having time or interest in doing it for the film. I think the same could be said in other interviews – despite asking them to prepare something they hadn’t and I didn’t push them to do it because it is time consuming and I had given up on the idea because it will be impossible to do for everyone. I was also thinking about the non-printers I had asked to be part of the film to help give triangulation to the research.
I will have to find others ways to help the viewer connect with the interviewee and care about what they’re saying. It is disappointing as it is a very sweet idea and it would be a point of difference between the other letterpress films I’ve watched, but the issues I’ve experienced with delivering on it may be exactly why others haven’t.