Recently I needed to find a specific image that could be made into a plate to print. Initially I searched the internet and then my own stock of images I’ve collected. Then I considered the stock image publishers, so google being my friend I found quite a few companies all willing to sell Victorian ‘copyright free’ images, at a hefty price. This sounds like a contradiction but it seems that a lot of companies are hosting images and selling on the behalf of the owners.

Anyway, I was looking for a Victorian pram, quite a small image really, that could be used as a new baby card. Bearing in mind that I do very limited print runs I only needed to make 10 to 20 cards. Anyway, for a relatively small pram at low quality the prices varied from upwards of £150. Suffice to say, I thought it best not to use this route!

Not to be deterred I also had a go at drawing a pram but I fail at drawing and I refuse to let anyone see the results! So thinking all could be lost I found a remarkable book shop in London at the weekend. A great little shop which appears to be dedicated to books of images, resources for print and drawing. They cover everything you can think of and of course I found my pram and more!

The Dover bookshop, we found by accident whilst trying to find a taxi. The shop is tucked away off of Seven Dials down Earlham street and if you happen to pass by, go and have a look. The nice thing about the book I bought, it has an ‘angel policy’ so I’m able to use the images a limited amount of times and not pay a royalty fee. So a win win!

Here are a few of examples of the images from the CD provided (Pram excluded). These are web quality but there are print quality (600dpi) images on the CD too. I think for future reference I’ll be using these stock images to create letterpress plates. These drawn/etched images are some of my favourite styles and set with contemporary fonts, are quite effective.


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