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William Ibbett? Jack the Ripper?

William Ibbett? Jack the Ripper?

A good friend, Casey Smith, was invited to deliver his ideas to the 2018 edition of RipperCon, a biennial conference of all things Jack the Ripper, held in Baltimore, April 7 - 8. Casey approached Lead Graffiti about contributing to a keepsake that could be given out to the attendees to generate some excitement for his talk and to add to the Ripperness of the weekend. We thought it was worth a stab.

His talk, entitled William Joseph Ibbett (1858-1934): Poet, Printer, Piquerist, Ripper Suspect?, centers on a 4-line, handwritten poem found in a book in Ibbett's collection.

The writing of a silly fool
who all Commandments
use'd to flout
yes, even that eleventh rule,
Thou shalt not be found out
.

The 4th line is underlined and the poem is signed "W.I." Casey's premise was to propose Ibbett as a potential Jack the Ripper by offering the poem along with other circumstantial evidence.

Casey handset the incriminating poem in a period typeface called Packard, which has that nice swash "Th" ligature used at the beginning (see image below). He chose to print the text and a tailpiece in silver, fling a little airbrushing in blood red for a touch of gore, and (with a nod to the poem's original appearance) underline the final line with an old-school-style perforation to round out the visual design.

In the photo at the top, is Ray lurking between the torn-edge masks that were used to create the visual bloody gash.

180329-casey-smith-ibbett-keepsake-81.jpg

Above shows the keepsake in its post mortem state.

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Above you can see Ray's airbrushing in progress as Casey assists with paper handling. The two torn edges creating the sides of the gash were positioned fairly randomly. This adds a singular touch when people sitting side-by-side can see that their particular pieces are unique.

According to Casey, the keepsake received a good gut reaction from the RipperCon crowd.

For students it is worth saying that you should actively seek out projects that will give you some outside-of-class opportunities along with possibly getting a printed piece for your portfolio. These projects also give you one more opportunity to experiment.

Collaborating? Fun. Working with a new subject? Fun. Finding an unusual excuse to use our perforator? Fun. Helping out a friend? Fun. Adding to the overall enthusiasm for a conference of committed people? Bloody fun.

DCAD's post-Werkman workshop

Laboratory Press : metal type composition the old-fashioned way

Laboratory Press : metal type composition the old-fashioned way

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