When I added a musician to my household I learned about an ailment common to the breed: GAS, or Gear (or Guitar) Acquisition Syndrome. I've enjoyed rolling my eyes at conversations about mixers and amplifiers and the equipment minutiae typical of musicians. I shake my head and chuckle, "Musicians!"
Which is not to say I don't have my own art gear foibles. I have a zillion daypacks and bags because none is ever perfect for all iterations of travel with sketching gear. I have many tubes of ink and paint, scores of drawing implements, drawers of paper and sketchbooks. But until recently the common feature of all of it has been that I could move it myself. Well, except for the paper storage cabinet... but that's another story.
And then something started happening. Back in February the stork brought me a Richeson Baby Press, now affectionately named Elvis (Press-ley). Elvis weighs about 65 pounds and I can schlep him around a bit, but he's pushing the envelope.
Of course I then needed a steel tool cabinet for Elvis to sit upon, which arrived in April. This I could NOT move by myself, but the DM and I teamed up to haul it up the stairs to Studio V with a modicum of huffing and puffing.
With the move to Studio V it became clear that I needed a new work surface. The solid-core door which is now the table top is also a two-person shift. As is the new stall mat. Rut ro.
But as of this morning I have now officially gone 'round the bend, having taken custody of an old Challenge proof press*. Well, I've taken partial custody of it, as it's in temporary storage in the garage of friends nearby. At several hundred pounds of awkwardness there's no WAY the three strong young men and we two middle-aged printmakers and our significant others could have gotten this thing upstairs to Studio V. So yeah, I'm already hunting for new studio space. (sigh)
Suddenly I'm shaking my head and chuckling not at musicians but at myself... the proud caretaker of a behemoth about which I know nothing and for which I have no permanent home. Printmaker's Gear Acquisition Syndrome? 'Fraid so. But it's a thing of beauty, ain't it?
(*To my surprise, I'm finding it difficult to locate information about this press online. Challenge proof presses were originally supposed to be competition for Vandercook models, but Vandercook won a legal action against Challenge and they stopped manufacturing them. Could be the name "Challenge" will be more appropriate than is comfortable. We'll see.)