We had the pleasure of interviewing Echo member Estelle, freelance artist and co-founder of Duplikat Press– an independent Risograph press & design studio located in East London.
They offer Risograph printing for posters, flyers, artist prints, zines & stickers as well as a bespoke graphic design & illustration service.
We asked Estelle about how she’s been using Echo to grow her business, what lockdown has been like for her, and how she got creative with pivoting her business during the pandemic.
Tell us a bit more about Duplikat Press… what do you do?
Myself and partner Rich (with occasional help from our dog Winter!) offer affordable Risograph printing in Fish Island, East London. It’s a little like screen printing; each layer of colour is printed one at a time, producing very bright, tactile prints.
Almost anything can be Risograph printed and we can produce greeting cards, zines, flyers, record sleeves, wedding invitations, leaflets and business cards amongst other things.
We set up the studio in March 2019 and have been very lucky to build up our portfolio and have lots of repeat customers from the local area, as well as, across the UK. We also run print workshops which we hope to start up again, once lockdown restrictions have eased a bit more.
How have the last few months been for you?
At the start of the lockdown, we had a very quiet couple of weeks, then our workload exploded! We were in the studio seven days a week at one point working on multiple projects.
Lots of people had said to us that they’d found time to work on creative personal projects now they were out of work temporarily.
It’s obviously been a very difficult time for some, but it did seem to bring out the creative side in many people and give them a chance to work on projects which they otherwise wouldn’t have time to do.
The last few weeks have been more regular for us in terms of print jobs and we’ve been discussing other avenues for the business, as well as future plans for the studio.
We love the Lockdown Larder zine you guys have produced – can you tell us a bit more about it?
We’d seen a few studios produce ‘quaran-zines’ during the start of the lockdown for charity and we thought this was a lovely idea. We came up with the ‘Lockdown Larder‘ theme from the food shortages in supermarkets.
We thought it might be fun to play on the idea of people having to dig through the back of their cupboards to use up weird, forgotten about items.
We got amazing submissions and were blown away that so many artists wanted to take part, not only in the UK but from across the world.
We Risograph printed the zines and accompanying postcards and we’ve raised just over £250 for Bow Foodbank so far!
You’ve been an Echo member for a while now, what attracted you to join Echo in the first place?
I joined Echo after seeing their very first Echo++ course advertised (which I was accepted onto) and since then have loved being a part of the network and getting to know the team.
I thought the idea of sharing skills was such a good concept, especially as I was a struggling freelance illustrator when I first moved to the area so I was able to gain illustration experience and trades through it, as well as meeting great people on the course who I’m still in touch with.
I could always turn up to an Echo event by myself and never feel out of place – they were so different to the usual ‘networking’ events I’d been to previously and I always felt really welcome.
What have been some of your favourite Echo experiences so far?
We ran a Risograph print and Linocut workshop last year in collaboration with Jodie Sadler from ‘Be Smart Choose Art’ who I’d met through the Echo++ business course, which was great fun! It was lovely to be able to teach both print processes in an informal way.
I then used the Echoes I’d earned to attend workshops run by Nadia & Chanelle, who joined our workshop. They were on wax ring carving with Stööki and leathercraft with Studio Nelle, both of which I’d never done before and massively enjoyed.
In the past, I’ve offered out Etsy shop advice and received swim lessons in return!
What will business look like for you following lockdown?
We had plans to apply for shop and studio space within the new Fish Island fashion and arts area, which we very much hope to still do once the project is up and running again.
We’re also going to restart workshops later in the year and are offering print internships to artists and illustrators from our studio. Of course, we’d love to offer some tickets for Echoes so watch this space!
Want to find out more about Duplikat Press? Follow them below!