PictureNoel Loder.

Rarely does your first post-college job, the one that pays the bills while you figure things out, become a lifelong passion. But for Mill Valley resident Noel Loder, his just-out-of-college, much-needed job at a printing company led to nearly three decades in the print business – and now his own printing business.

“It was just a job,” Loder says with a chuckle of that first gig. Loder may not have thought much of printing at the time but soon discovered a deep and lasting fascination that would drive him to one day start his own printing business, Woodcut Press, which he launched in late 2016.

“I had always loved factories,” he says. “My dad was a biological engineer so maybe that’s why; but they have always just amazed me.” Once in the print shop, Loder realized he was on to something, “I really enjoyed the craft of printing, the machines, the tangible product.”

What started as a job grew into a passion and from his passion, Loder distilled a philosophy. He calls his business Woodcut Press as a sort of a throwback to the old process of printing where artists/printers would carve an image into wood and impress it onto ink and then onto paper. His tag line, “Respecting the Craft,” “is to remind people that the printed piece is alive and well!” Loder says.

Woodcut Press is a one-stop print broker covering the entire printing process. Loder coordinates between all the different professionals involved in the printing process ensuring each product is designed, printed and distributed in the right way.

“Some people think broker is a dirty word,” he says, “but I do a lot of the work for you. The bottom line is that printing is generally pretty expensive, but I know how to get you the best price.”

Loder handles each job from artwork, press and bindery to fruition.

“I know the best designers for each type of project,” he says. “Then there’s the printers, the guys with ink under their fingernails, I know which ones to get in touch with.” Pulling out an elegant mailing card, Loder explained, “then there’s the matter of getting something like this into the right hands, I know the mailing data groups and the mailing houses who can do that.”

In fact, Loder’s work may have already found its way into your hands as his clients include San Francisco State University, KQED, and The San Francisco Ballet.

But printing is more than a business for Loder; it’s a way of living in the present. Driving us away from our data and devices, Loder’s work is about providing people with a tactile reminder of the physical world we live in. In this way, each print becomes a touchstone, a meditation on present.

“There’s a power to the printed piece,” he says.

The 411: Woodcut Press is a full-service print broker. MORE INFO.

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