Vollmond Kalendar 2012

Today’s project at Druckwerkstatt here in Berlin was a full Moon calendar – Vollmond Kalender – for 2012, an attempt to bring together my Old Farmer’s Almanac self with my printing self.

Last night, in preparation, I started with the Almanac.com Full Moon Dates page, then translated the month names into German (when in German, print as the Germans do, I reason).

When I arrived in the studio this morning my first task was to search through the drawers of wooden sans serif type to assemble each month and its corresponding date, a significant challenge given that many of the fonts are incomplete (and that I wasn’t willing to go the “mix and match typefaces” route, at least not within words). This took about 45 minutes.

Next, I had to find a way to jigsaw puzzle all of these months into a rectangular shape suitable for printing; this took about two hours, give or take, and I went through several iterations and several tweaks of the final version.

Here’s the layout I started with:


And here’s what I finished up with:


The biggest changes were the switch form a sans serif “mond” (Moon) to a serif “Voldmond 2012” in metal spread over two lines and the introduction of spaces between month names and day numbers (I thought munging them together would be cool; it was just confusing).

Over lunch I purchased some large sheets of grey paper and green paper at the Grün Papetrie up the street, cut these into 25 cm by 29 cm pieces on the giant paper cutter in the book bindery, and then experimented with printing in different colours. Here are some of what resulted:




That last one – white on grey – is my favourite, as the mottled white ink (I didn’t get complete coverage) resulted in letters printed with a distinctly Moon-like look:


Now all I gotta do is figure out how I’m going to mail these to subscribers without going broke; I’m thinking that, because there are a few cities – Charlottetown, Montreal, Malmö – that have more than one subscriber, I might gang these city’s prints together and mail them in a big envelope; the recipients can then all get together, have a beer, and get to know each other.


Ben's picture
Ben on August 2, 2011 - 19:47

Neat! I don’t see why I didn’t bother subscribing. I’ve loved the projects to date. The only flaw I see in this one is that the date comes after the month, per English norms, rather the “9. Januar” per German norms. The point still shows through & it’d be a nice thing to hang on the wall to remember when the full moon will come.

Heather M's picture
Heather M on August 3, 2011 - 00:45

Sounds like a fantastic idea! We received your “Berlin” Postcard today — I smelled it — however the fresh ink smell was gone.

Peter Rukavina's picture
Peter Rukavina on August 3, 2011 - 13:52

Looking at the print in more detail this morning its flaws are emerging: the 8 in November 28 is obviously upside down. The umlaut over the A in MÄRZ got knocked out of place (fixed in later versions).

But I also never noticed that the O in VOLL and the O in MOND line up nicely, and serve as sort of secondary Moons.

Morgan Roderick's picture
Morgan Roderick on August 3, 2011 - 21:56

You could allow subscribers to donate to your experiments using paypal (or bitcoin) or something

Leah's picture
Leah on August 4, 2011 - 14:58

I didn’t know I’d be getting more than one project. This is great! I donated again. I will always support the making and delivery of beautiful mail. Who knew I would get an opportunity.

Mare-Anne's picture
Mare-Anne on August 11, 2011 - 17:05

Nice Vollmond Kalender! I’m glad that you were able to use the Almanac’s full Moon info to create this. I just wanted to let you know that the full Moons in May, Aug. and Sept. happen a day later in Germany (6 mai, august 2, and 30 september).

Peter Rukavina's picture
Peter Rukavina on August 11, 2011 - 17:14

I knew I was going to run into something like that; thanks for the double-check, Mare-Anne. Now, where is the “delete” key on the letterpress…

At least the Moon will be “full Moon ish” on the dates in the calendar ;-)

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