Alan Kitching's Concise Letterpress Typography Workshop

Alan's work


Alan Kitching and Celia Stothard
Alan & Celia. Photograph by Graham Miller

Kitching's Concise Letterpress Typography Workshop

World-renowned typographer, designer and letterpress practitioner Alan Kitching 
(RDI AGI Hon FRCA), will teach a hands-on two day course exploring the details and fundamentals of typography. The course
will give each participant an exceptional understanding of typesetting and the art
of letterpress printing.


The project

Since its first edition
in 1949, the essential handbook for compositors and printers was Rudolph Hostettler’s The Printer’s Terms. This modest, compact, and now revered publication was described by Hostettler as a dictionary in three parts. Part three is a dictionary of printer’s terms in five languages based on 1,361 English terms.
From his treasured 1963 edition, Alan Kitching has chosen 215 of these terms to be interpreted by participants in Kitching’s Concise Letterpress Typography Workshop.
A visitor will be invited to attend the workshop in the afternoon of the final day to view the work created and discuss the project.
Workshop visitors are invited from this distinguished list:
Margaret Calvert
Peter Davenport
Catherine Dixon
Simon Esterson
Sara Fanelli
Nick Finney
Jeff Fisher
Jason Godfrey
Fernando Gutierrez
Jonny Hannah
George Hardie
Michele Jannuzzi
Billy Kiosoglou
Henrik Kubel
Bruno Monguzzi
Paul Neale
Richard Smith
Andy Stevens
Sophie Thomas

The brief

Each participant will interpret a term, expressing it in the simplest, most direct and exciting way, using the letterpress equipment, type founts, rules and borders held at The Typography Workshop Printroom.

The most successful works will be considered for inclusion in the first of a new series of Broadside publications by The Typography Workshop.

Upon sign-up, each participant will receive
a limited edition, personalised letterpress print containing the
full course prospectus
and brief.


Dates & booking

All courses run for two consecutive days at Alan Kitching’s Kennington workshop,
normally Friday–Saturday unless by special arrangement. The cost is £900 and includes lunch and all materials. A
 deposit of £100 is required when booking.

There are no workshop dates at the moment. Please check back soon.



To book a course or if you have any questions, please email:



Workshop director: Alan Kitching RDI AGI Hon FRCA, born 1940 Darlington, Co. Durham. Apprentice compositor (1956–61). Met Anthony Froshaug and co-established the experimental printing workshop at Watford College of Technology, School of Art (1964). Worked with Froshaug until 1967 and later collaborated on student projects at the Central School of Art & Design. Established own design practice London (1973). Partner with Derek Birdsall at Omnific (1977), started letterpress printing there (1985). Established The Typography Workshop in Clerkenwell EC1 (1989). Teaching through letterpress at the Royal College of Art (1991–2006). Partnership with designer/writer Celia Stothard from 1994.
Workshop patron: Celia Stothard FRSA, BA HONS (1949–2010), Graphic Design St Martin’s School of Art; career in design and copywriting for publishing and advertising in UK and USA; lecturer in design communication; award winning member of British Design & Art Direction, and the Art Directors Club N.Y.
Workshop designers/printers: Jon Kielty and Ross Shaw
are both graduates from the University of Northumbria at Newcastle and practising graphic designers with their own letterpress workshop.


A selection of imagery from recent workshops
and workshops held over the last 20 years.
More to come.



Design: Alan Kitching
Jon Kielty and Ross Shaw

Website: Luke Sturgeon

Photography: Phil Sayer 
Jaye Prynne at Eye Magazine

Copywriting: Celia Stothard
and Holly Pallister

Type: Gill Sans Eric Gill,
Caslon Old Face
William Caslon,
Verdana and Georgia
Matthew Carter