Recent Projects

I’ve been (un)reasonably busy of late, but/and have done a few things in the press. As a parting gift for Jackson Meazle, who has left our fair cities for some other, Southern clime, I printed this broadside of a poem for his grandmother.


I also printed a pair of broadsides, commissioned by Matt Gonzalez, to celebrate the birthday of Tamsin Smith, the first in two color schemes, the second in one.

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Also, recently completed, are a couple/few small books. The layered sepia design here serves as the back cover for a little book of poems Jason Morris and I wrote on a recent camping trip to Death Valley. He’s done a water color for the front, a nicely gnarled Joshua tree.

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These are the first two in a new series of pamphlets called Slug.Docs, featuring work by candidates in the Creative/Critical concentration of the doctoral program in Literature at UC Santa Cruz. The titles are entirely coincidental. Clean by Eric Sneathen; and Shiny by Cathy Thomas.

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I also printed covers for another small chapbook of poems by Eric Sneathen, I feel like an allien (sic), which he is putting out in a small edition himself, and covers for a larger chapbook by Derek Fenner, Hermeticities & Others, which he is putting out in a larger edition under his Bootstrap imprint.


Oh, and lastly, this sort of sigilated number print, “o-n-e” through “n-i-n-e” arranged and printed, rotated and printed again, rotated and printed again, rotated and printed a fourth time, all in black, then “z-e-r-o” done similarly in red:


A and I

I produced two more prints recently (“A : a” and “i : i : i”) as I continue my experiments with wood type at the Cowell Press on the UCSC campus.

“A : a” was made from a single type arrangement, printed once, then turned 45 degrees and printed again, giving it the cascade effect. The coloring was done by putting one color on one half of the rollers and another on the other and allowing them to mix as I printed. (10″x12-1/2″ – edition of 12 on Domestic Etching)


“i : i : i” was made from a large wood type arrangement printed once, rotated 90 degrees and printed again in the same sepia tone. A lead type arrangement was then printed in red, rotated and printed again, then again, and again. (12″x12″ – edition of 10 on Domestic Etching)



At the tail end of summer I printed the covers for the sixth issue of my roughly annual literary magazine, AMERARCANA: A Bird & Beckett Review. I set the titles in Bulmer and used the back of wood type to form the grained block pattern. After a few delays getting the final interior text file to the printer, it has at last been bound, and is now available. The official release reading and celebration will take place at Bird & Beckett Books, in San Francisco, on Wednesday, December 9th at 7 pm. This issue features art by Will Yackulicand writing by Garrett Caples, Tongo Eisen-Martin, Derek Fenner, Jackqueline Frost, Evan Kennedy, Frank Lima, Jason Morris, Rod Roland, Aaron Shurin, Cedar Sigo, Syd Staiti, Richard Tagett, Tara Thomas, and the editor, along with translations of Hafez by Patrick James Dunagan and Ava Koohbor.

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Further vowels

Continuing my work at the Cowell Press, (taking a cue from the previous print “o : O : o”) I used large lowercase wooden “e”s to make a sort of pinwheel/flower and small uppercase wooden “e”s to make a square/lattice, printing each in grey, turning 90 degrees to print again in grey, then swapped their positions and repeated that process in blue, yielding this set of two inverted, inset/overprinted squares: “e : E” (9-1/2″x20″ – edition of 12 on Domestic Etching).

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Cowell Press Continued

This is the second print I did at the Cowell Press, a couple weeks ago. Composed of 3 types of wood “o”s arranged in blocks and printed all together in yellow, rotated (#1 to position 3, #2 to position 1, #3 to position 2) and printed again in blue, then rotated again and printed once more in red, yielding this 3-part print: “0 : O : o” (5-1/2″x17″ – edition of 12 on Lennox 100).

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Cowell Press

I’ve just entered into what I hope will be a long-term relationship with the Cowell Press on the UC Santa Cruz campus, currently run by Gary Young, poet, printer, protégé (so to speak) of William Everson/Brother Antoninus, poet/printer nonpareil, who taught for years at the university and lived and worked just up the mountain. The Cowell Press still has a good deal of Everson’s own type, including much of the Goudy New Style he used to print his famous Psalter. I’m looking forward to working in the press, with Gary and others, expanding my know-how over the term and into the future. As a first project, I made a tricolor broadside – “Jester duple” (11″ x 15″) – using wood type on the Vandercook, in an edition of 12 on Lennox 100 paper.



Released on the same day, at the same time, in the same place with Brian Lucas’ Eclipse Babel, was TAKES, by Jason Morris, a chapbook of brief essays and poems published by Bootstrap Press. This is the second of Bootstrap’s new pamphlet series. The poet and the publisher met me down at the San Francisco Center for the Book to collaboratively and spontaneously design and print the cover, and in this case the title page, too.

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Ensemble Editions, a new collaborative publishing venture, releases its first book this month: Eclipse Babel, with text and drawings by Brian Lucas. I designed the book and printed the covers from handset Bulmer type on the front and spine, and a photopolymer ISBN barcode on the back. For the front cover I set the title and author’s name doubly, in nested rectangles, printed in blue (along with the spine and barcode), then rotated it 90 degrees and printed in red, yielding this birds-eye view of the tower’s construction. (Publication party and exhibition opening: Sept. 15)

Eclipse Babel: text and drawings by Brian Lucas

Next up: Takes, a chapbook by Jason Morris, published by Bootstrap Press.



For the latest Impart Ink project, a pamphlet published under the auspices of Bird & Beckett comprising roughly half of Patrick James Dunagan’s long poem (or poem sequence) BOOK OF KINGS, I experimented with wood type and color layering for the first time, to mixed results. The typesetting for the text was tricky, too, but I’m pleased with the results, and the poetry is excellent. Next up this summer: Eclipse Babel, a sequence of drawings and prose poems by Brian Lucas; and then the sixth issue of AMERARCANA.

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