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          Tour de Lead Graffiti 2013
S T A G E  6 :
          Aix-en-Provence > Montpellier / 176 km

the project | | clamshell | title page | descriptions | colophon | postcards | composite

Stage 1 | 2 | 3 | 4 | 5 | 6 | 7 | 8 | 9 | Rest | 10 | 11 | 12 | 13 | 14 | 15 | Rest | 16 | 17 | 18 | 19 | 20 | 21

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Available as an individual print
or in the clamshell box edition

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Start time today : 5:42am

Completed : 9:56 pm

Time today : 16 hours 14 minutes

Time to date: 100 hours 33 minutes

Printing sequence : 4 runs - handrolled greenish grey names & arrows

Runs to date : 36

370 > 800 pixel wide version for detail

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The day's story

No one—either American, British or French—won the stage, so we didn't need to use red, white, and blue as our colors.

André Greipel of Lotto - Belisol finally grabbed a stage victory with a powerful drive across the finish line following a perfect lead-in by his team. It is clear that the lead-out team is so critical for getting the sprinter well positioned to put the pedal to the metal for those final couple hundred meters.

With that said, the absolute highlight of the NBCSports telecast was a 'catch up' by Mark Cavendish. Cavendish had crashed, and unfortunately the incident hadn't been caught by any of the dozens of cameras in helicopters and motorbikes. They finally caught him on video with a noticable streak of road dirt across his left shoulder as he was jumping back on his bike to start trying to catch back up with the peloton.

The roads on this particular stage could often be narrow and quite less than straight. And at this point they were at their most narrow and winding. One bike rider, one motorbike with a camera and a support car comfortably side-by-side probably had another 6 feet to spare. Now add to this that all of those vehicles are moving at something like 30 mph, going around turns, dodging cyclists & spectators, yelling into radios, etc. and there is more than enough opportunity for imminent didaster. And if Cavendish was going to have any chance of winning the stage, he first had to catch up, and if at all possible, quickly enough so that he could get his second wind before the final sprint.

A motorbike/camera duo followed Cavendish's entire harrowing trip back to the peloton, which now means that a cyclist is trying to pass maybe 20 cars, another 15 motorcycles, a few riders who have been dropped from the peloton, plus navigate roundabouts, curbs, spectators and who knows what else. At one roundabout he was approaching a support car, which was hugging the inside of the curve in a roundabout, and just 'bunny hopped' the curb at 30 mph to get around him. It was several thrilling minutes of a horizontal rollercoaster ride. Rebecca was as excited about Cavendish's ride as we were, and the descriptive words for his mad dash owe a lot to her extensive grasp of words.

We pulled the German flag colors from André Greipel's jersey to celebrate his win. The three other sprinters were in the game up until the end, but Greipel was just not going to be denied this one. For some reason, Cavendish's lead-out team wasn't with him at the end and that may be another demonstration of just how difficult it is to win stages on your own.

Doing a lockup with type at multiple angles (see the photos below) is great fun trying to marry the architecture of the type & furniture with the engineering & plane geometry required. It is nice when you take the time to do it right, turn the quoin key a bit and have every piece just freeze into position. Those descriptive words did just that.

Printing details

Signatures: Ray Nichols, Jill Cypher, & Rebecca Johnson Melvin

Size: 14.5" x 22.5"

Stock: Somerset Textured White 300 gsm

Main typography: Impact (wood), Thinline and Euro (metal)

Production notes: handset wood & metal type. The stage / signature block / profile was preprinted using photopolymer plates.

Press: Vandercook Universal III

Today's photos

We have the first two runs completed. Ray is outlining all of the type on tracing paper so we can reverse the image and place the 7 metal type blocks in the right position.

Ray and Rebecca positioning the type blocks on top of the tracing paper drawing.

This shows Ray starting to lock in the type blocks. Each of those pieces of 2- and 3-pica furniture are against the side of the press to facilitate getting them in position and then staying there.

This shows the final lockup which worked quite well the very first time.

Rebecca printing with Jill removing the printed sheets from our Vandercook Universal III. We are within about 15 minutes of being finished from the time on the clock.

One of Jill's shadow shots as the late afternoon sun rakes across the studio.