PBS feature, new special bindings and being on the road.

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Again it seems like time flies and no updates to the blog. Fear not! I’m merely busy and not slacking much aside from the occasional foray on the river.

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The opening sequence for A Craftsman’s Legacy. Look for me at around 38 seconds at the intaglio press with host Eric Gorges.

The biggest news would have to be that the television show, A Craftsmans’s Legacy, has started showing across the country. I will be the subject of episode 11 “The Bookmaker” so check your local or regional PBS television network listings as each affiliate creates their own programing schedule. The show is still being picked up across the country for the new fall season and if you happen to be near Palais des Festivals, Cannes, France next month APT Worldwide, the international sales arm of distributor American Public Television, will feature the series at the upcoming MIPCOM so there’s a chance it could be picked up for international viewing.

I’m happy to report that most all of the binding projects are finishing up – all of the edition binding work for The Mad Angler Poems and The Intruder are complete and many of the quite late presentation bindings and deluxe copies of the books are done. All this in preparation for Oak Knoll Bookfest coming up in less than a month on October 3rd-5th in Newcastle, DE as well as CODEX International Book Fair & Symposium coming up next February 8th-11th in Berkeley, CA. I’ve just returned from a long weekend in Ann Arbor, MI for the 12th annual Kerrytown BookFest which was lovely as usual. A special treat was being on a speaking panel with Ken Mikolowski who founded the Alternative Press in Detroit in the 1960s.

Some of the fine bindings recently completed

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This was a lot of hand work that I couldn’t have accomplished without my excellent assistant this past summer, Erin Murray, who is flying off to the UK tomorrow to start her MFA program in book conservation at University of the Arts London, Camberwell. Erin will be missed around here I assure you, she was my apprentice 2 years ago and came back to work for me this past summer to help out, learn some more and prepare for her future studies. Have a look at her website here to get an idea of the sort of creative talent she has.

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I’m currently waiting for a new translation for the Kafka piece, finishing a couple commissioned works and getting prints ediitioned for the upcoming series of shows. Hopefully I’ll have a prototype of the Kafka for Oak Knoll.

Diana Gabaldon keepsake completed

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Finished the Diana Gabaldon broadside. 13×10″ sheet size, 2 colors. Additional bit of a tag line and credits tastefully printed on the back side. I had to print 200 of them as the event has been sold out. I wish I would have had more lead time on this and could have acquired type or had a plate made to composed the main display font in a more historically accurate font like Caslon but some beat up Americana will have to do, only off by about 200 years…

 

Diana Gabaldon keepsake

The Diana Gabaldon keepsake for the NWS event in Traverse City, July 7, 2014.

Post Event thoughts

A little update after last nights event. I don’t always like meeting authors or listening to them speak in public about their work but this was an exception. Diana is a genuine and real human being that, despite her amazing and deserved success, came off with wit and honesty about her process and was very engaging to the audience. She also liked the broadsides and was pleased with the additional copies I made for here on the nicer paper stock. It was a capacity sold out crowd at the Traverse City Opera House. I arrived late (of course) and was stunned to see the line for the door wrap around the block – that doesn’t happen in Northern Michigan very often. We got in, delivered the broadsides and settled for balcony seats which was pretty much all that was left. I always feel a little bad about the extra printed items I make for these events as then it is just one more thing that the author might be expected to sign but Diana was very gracious and stuck it out until the end of the line.

My wife and I got out early with still a long line behind us and went for dinner nearby. As serendipity and as luck would have it Diana, Doug Stanton and a few other people ended up at the same restaurant and asked us to join them, very nice end to the evening though already late. Ouch, how much do you pay your baby sitters? Not the best of pics here from the phone camera:

A keepsake for Diana Gabaldon

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Diana Gabaldon

Last fall I started doing occasional ephemeral printing for the National Writers Series and started with a poem for Nikki Giovanni. Now, with very short notice, I’ve received the “go ahead” from Diana Gabaldon’s publishers to do something for her evening of conversation at the Traverse City Opera House with the NWS.

But I only have 7 days to do it. Ah well, deadlines are fun, right? Right?

Diana’s famed series began in 1991 with her first novel, Outlander, which became a wildly popular historical, sci-fi, adventure, romance, non-fiction, and fantasy series. Readers have been hanging on the edge of their seats ever since for the next thrilling installment of Claire and Jamie’s story. The seven book series has sold more than 20 million copies and a television series based on the Outlander series is currently filming and will premiere on Starz network later this year.

So here’s the deal, apparently I can pretty much use any of Diana’s writing that I want but I’ve not read her books. (sorry) My wife is a big fan, many other good friends too so I know some of the story – one thing I recall is that the heroine hooks up with a printer at some point in time which, obviously, piques my interest. So here it is from Voyager, book three in the Outlander series:

 

It was a longish, winding close, and the printshop was at the foot. There were thriving businesses and tenements on either side, but I had no attention to spare for anything beyond the neat white sign that hung by the door.

A. Malcolm

Printer and Bookseller

It said beneath this, Books, calling cards, pamphlets, broadsheets, letters, etc.

I stretched out my hand and touched the black letters of the name. A. Malcolm. Alexander Malcolm. James Alexander Malcolm MacKenzie Fraser. Perhaps.

 

What do you think? Captures enough of the essence of the series to be a memorable little bit with the first reunion between Jamie and Claire? Do you have a better suggestion? I need it quick to start playing with type and composition!

The Traverse City National Writers Series was started back in 2009. Since its inception over 70 writers of note from around the world have come to Northern Michigan to give readings in the Traverse City Opera House, meet the local book culture and perhaps ingest enough of our region to spark their imaginations in other creative ways. On July 7th Diana Gabaldon will have a conversation with a host and talk about her book series and then, of course, you can buy her books, chat a little and, if you’re lucky, get something signed. As a bonus for buying a book on this evening you will receive a copy of the little broadside I am making for Diana and the NWS in an edition of no more than 100.

 

The Mad Angler Poems – trout, ink and paper

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I’m happy to announce the arrival of The Mad Angler Poems, the latest book of verse by Michael Delp produced here at Deep Wood Press. Twenty four poems accompanied by 5 hand colored wood engravings by Chad Pastotnik and an introduction by Jack Driscoll.

Ever since last falls release of Mike’s poem The Mad Angler’s Manifesto which I produced as a large broadside I have been working on this updated and complete body of poems that embodies the habitat of trout as sacred places and the defilement, which is man, of the balance of nature. While the theme may be angling, trout specific and a little angry these poems transcend the niche and are just as much about how we interact with the natural world and the compromises and justifications we make to do it. Most often this is also done with coyote charm and devilish delight – excerpted from The Mad Angler Speaks Truth to Power:

I say that water is better than money,
something wet and smooth to be taken in and coveted.
I say that long ago we spoke to water and it spoke back.

Water is a form of being saved, lying down,
something wise in our cells seeking gradients,
places to run and places to rest.
I claim that once, in a dream, I walked on water.
Storms came.
I entered the clouds and when I came back down,
I spit the truth.

Michael Delp is a writer of poetry, fiction, and nonfiction whose works have appeared in numerous national publications. He is the author of the following five books from Wayne State University Press – Over the Graves of Horses (1989), Under the Influence of Water (1992), The Coast of Nowhere (1997), The Last Good Water (2003), and As If We Were Prey (2010) in addition to six chapbooks of poetry and being the co-editor of the Made In Michigan book series from Wayne State University Press. He taught creative writing at the Interlochen Arts Academy, has twice been the winner of the Passages North/NEH Poetry Competition, and has won a PEN Syndicated Fiction Award.

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The regular edition is quarter-bound with a brown Harmatan Moroccan goat with a cotton/linen Asahi book cloth. Gold title on spine with a varnished panel on the cover cloth overprinted with the brown drake fly wood engraving and Hahnemuhle Bugra in mocha colored flyleaves back up the book blocks which are hand sewn on straps. The book is composed in 11 and 14pt  Janson with Garamond in display sizes and printed in 2 colors on Magnani Revere Book cotton 120gsm paper. 8 7/8 x 6 7/8 x 1/2 inches, 33 pages.

Edition of 71 books, the first 5 are reserved for the deluxe edition and one special copy for the author. Signed, numbered and available for purchase on the Deep Wood Press website for $350.00.

from The Prayer of The Mad Angler:

“I pray that the water in the heart of Jesus might wash away the sins of fools who erect dams, channel rivers, build levies
and create false cataracts in the lobbies of hotels.

I pray for eddies, backwaters, the slow places where current cannot find its way and I pray for shallow riffles where gravel churns up new words constantly,
the river a book spoken in all kinds of weather.”

The wild flurry that is DWP

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Ok, so I’m a bad blogger but I’ve been busy enough. I am currently wrapping up the new book The Mad Angler Poems by Michael Delp (details of which will appear in a blog post this coming week) having just finished the wood engraving press run last Friday. I’ve got company for the summer in the studio – my old apprentice, Erin Murray, is here to help before she heads off to graduate work at the University of the Arts London, Camberwell this fall. Erin is a big help in the studio, I trust her skills and judgement in the bindery and she is creating her own little wonders of paper and ink while she’s here as well. That is another future blog post – I will feature some of the apprentices I’ve had here at DWP from the last 15 years. I’ve lost touch with some of them but many are still kicking out some wonderful prints, bindings or books and are making their own way in the art world.

Probably the biggest news since New York is the PBS film crew that came to shoot a segment for a new national series that will premiere this fall – A Craftsman’s Legacy. No idea when it will air on television and a quick internet search doesn’t turn anything up yet either. I’ll be sure to let you know when I know. It was a long day of shooting, not sure what parts of the 11+ hours will make the show. Here’s a couple pics of the host, Eric Gorges, and some of the crew in action.

 

On another note, last fall I had a visit from James Spica who is the editor for Michigan’s Trout Unlimited magazine Michigan Trout. James was amused enough to write a story about the visit and I’m happy to say it will be appearing in The Flyfish Journal in this falls issue along with some artwork or studio pics that FFJ requested which will help cement some of the mythology surrounding DWP. James stopped in again a couple weeks ago when he was back from Philly, we got out on the water and were properly skunked. It’s been a slow start for trout here in the north this summer.

 

A Deep Wood Journal is also coming along nicely though there is still nothing to show for it that I can share at the moment. Let’s just say that the quality of writing and the writers themselves won’t disappoint you and I’m anxious to be able to disclose more information with you as soon as some more details are taken care of. Can I tempt you with a new translation by Daniel Mark Epstein?

This fall I have a couple events lined up. On September 7th I’ll be part of the 12th annual Kerrytown Bookfest again in Ann Arbor, MI and will be on a panel of Michigan based independent presses in addition to demonstrating intaglio printing throughout the day. In October I’ll be in Newcastle, Delaware for Oak Knoll Fest XVIII from the 3rd-5th. Oak Knoll Fest is another show sponsored by the Fine Press Book Association and, like our NY show, will draw fine printers from around the world to once again gather to sell our books and have a small symposium, a few drinks and a lovely time in this village that time forgot.

new castle

 

Once again, for those of you who aren’t smitten, sorry for all the trouty stuff that makes the recurring visit on these pages. Regular literature that everyone enjoys is coming soon. Ok, here’s one teaser prototype title page for the new book before it comes out this week:

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New Literary Journal ~ we’ve got a name!

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It’s been some time now since the announcement of this project back in October of 2013 and the solicitation of name ideas. I wanted a name that “zinged” and though there were many responses both here and off the blog for suggestions none of them really hit me and after all these months I’ve decided to go with my first thoughts on the idea. I didn’t want to appear to be vainglorious of Deep Wood Press but in this age of SEO nonsense and our inundation of ephemeral media it just makes sense to go with the flow. So without further ado let me introduce the forthcoming

A Deep Wood Journal

 

In these months of silence on the subject progress has been made – my editorial partners on this project and I have been going over layout ideas, talking to some of our favorite writers and artists and working out a way that this can be done and not be overwhelmed by it – I’ve other books to print as well! I’ve talked to other publishers of such journals also, most recently in New York during the FPBA fair I had the good fortune of having a table next to John Randal and he was very helpful with some suggestions and experience based on his 31 issues of Matrix. We’ve decided to make this an annual publication and are working towards a tentative release date for this December or January 2015. I am working with a talented young designer to put together a web presence for the journal which will, hopefully, be online and have some content as well as subscription information. At this point we are not taking submissions but that will most likely change with time as I plan to be in this for the long haul. I will say that the author and artist list we have now will blow your socks off with the melding of prose, poetry and art in a luscious little finely printed gem. Aesthetics will be as important as content as far as I’m concerned.

It looks like a commenter back in October has won a prize as well but his avatar is currently not linking to an email so if Mark Mansfield is still reading this blog please contact me about your free copy of A Deep Wood Journal #1!

And finally, just so no one thinks I’m a complete slacker, here’s a little project that was cranked out last week for musician friend Seth Bernard. Not something I do on a regular basis here at DWP but since I’ve done his previous 2 albums and he’s such a good guy, comes to help the process along, plus we always have a good time and take the occasional break to strum a guitar – why not. With only a few days to design, layout and set the type I’m fairly pleased except for the broken serifs on the italic lower case “y”s on the front cover. The image on the right of the inside jacket is difficult to photograph because it is a metallic copper colored ink but in “real life” it comes off quite well and yes, that old wood engraving on the cover is getting quite a lot of extended use. All run through the old 1911 8×12 C&P platen press 4 times plus the foil stamp run – 2 solid days of printing for 1250 CD packages.

 

Some reflections on The Manhattan Fine Press Book Fair – 2014

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Finally returned home after a long stay in New York and still very energized and excited from the fair. It is always a treat to see my fellow printers and the work they produce and this show was exceptional with the breadth of fine presses in attendance. There were 43 of us from around the world exhibiting our work for those two days and not nearly enough time to catch up with many of them and meet new people. Representation from the UK, Germany, Canada, Chile, Guatemala and parts in-between all converged on Manhattan for the inaugural NY FPBA show coinciding with Rare Book Week and countless events and exhibits around the city.

The fair started off for many of us with a lovely reception at The Grolier Club for the exhibitors and friends where I had the opportunity to finally meet a great advocate of contemporary fine press, Chris Adamson, who writes the Books and Vines Blog. Chris also arranged a smaller gathering of some of us after the Grolier Club at the home of Mrs. Jeanne Shiff (of the Limited Editions Club.) where Peter Koch and I quickly digressed from books to trout and I had the pleasure to meet David Pascoe of Nawakum Press and Richard Wagener of Mixolydian Editions among others. I had slipped a copy of my Saturnalia in my sport coat pocket and felt a little sheepish giving it to Jeanne as a little thank you token for having us at her home and felt a little uncomfortable at her enthusiasm for it. It seems the LEC never published anything with collagraphs as illustration, just my luck to miss out on a potential opportunity to work with George Macy and Sid Shiff although an opportunity that would have only likely existed before I was born!

The show was well attended, I haven’t talked that much and seen that many people in months and months. A grueling pace for a slacker like me who prefers to work nights and sip coffee ’till noon. I had the fortune to have my table between John Randle of Whittington Press and Walter Bachinski of Shanty Bay Press with good friend Graham Moss of Incline Press nearby as well so I had plenty to digest in moments of spare time as I flipped through copies of John and Rosalind’s publication Matrix, now on #31, gleaning ideas for my own forthcoming journal (No, I haven’t forgotten that one – more to come soon!) and many other very well printed, illustrated and bound books. Fellow printer extraordinaire Russell Maret hosted many of us at his home Sunday evening after the fair for those of us who could still stand and talk and he and his wife Annie were gracious hosts (with very palatable scotch, thank you Russell). My first real taste of the city that evening as I hoofed it home from East 70 something Street down to my lovely accommodations on 1st and A in East Village.

The bookish fun didn’t end there either as I had meetings after the weekend at the New York Public Library where I got to admire yet another copy of the Gutenberg Bible and then on to The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Unfortunately after my meeting at the Met I had only about 20 minutes to explore before the museum closed for the day and all that was readily available was the Byzantine section. I’ll be back. That morning I had walked up 6th Ave and came back down 5th shuffling my way through to the end of a work day for many and the beginning for many more. I found an Orvis Shop on 5th Avenue and was quickly assured by the staff that despite the obvious lack of (live) trout in Manhattan it was the highest grossing retail store in the franchise. Another likely fish story… I ended up loving New York and will return for the next show and any other opportunity that might present. Coming from me it’s a huge personal compliment to a city but New York energy is different somehow and feeds the soul in a different way I suppose.

Once again I’m going to link to the FPBA page here that has a mostly complete list of exhibitors. I’ve had to reference it a few times myself as the reality of NY shifts more into a dream like state. And again I’d like to mention the Books and Vines website where you will likely find many of the above mentioned printer’s books reviewed and accompanied by many photos.

Some pictures of the show and highlights of the trip, I couldn’t get away from the table much during the exhibit so most of these are from during set up time. Also, I wish I had taken more pictures of the beautiful books, broadsides and prints but hopefully some of you might follow the abundant links above and explore them as the makers best show them in this strange interweb we occupy our time with.

Hope to see many again at Oak Knoll Fest XVIII: October 3-5, 2014 in New Castle Delaware this fall.

 

Manhattan Fine Press Book Fair ~ Book list for April 5th & 6th

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This is just a little list of items I’ll have available for next weeks big show in New York. I’m pulling out some of the older titles I haven’t shown in a while where there may only be one or two copies left for sale and I’ll also have some of the broadsides available for purchase.

Looking forward to meeting some new people whom I’ve only had the pleasure of communicating with online or snail mail. Chris Adamson, who has the excellent blog Books and Vines, will be attending the show along with a few others coming in from all parts of the world. Hope to see some of you there!

Books:

  • The Intruder, by Robert Traver with wood engravings by Jim Westergard
  • Heart of Darkness, by Joseph Conrad illustrated by Marc Castelli
  • The Path, by Sigrid Christiansen with lino cuts by Chad Pastotnik
  • Saturnalia, by H.P. Lovecraft with a collagraph by Chad Pastotnik
  • Killing The Bear, by Judith Minty with wood engravings by Glenn Wolff
  • There Be Monsters, written and illustrated by Chad Pastotnik with lino cuts
  • The Changeling’s Exile, by Gerard Wozek with an intaglio print by Chad Pastotnik
  • The Frogs Who Wished A King, Aesop with intaglio prints by Chad Pastotnik
  • Ripping Oblivion, written and illustrated by Steve Toornman with his intaglio prints
  • The Legend of Minisens, by Judith Hitz with lino cuts and intaglio by Steve Toornman, Meredith Krell and Chad Pastotnik
  • Folly, written and illustrated by Erin Murray with lino cut. Erin was my star apprentice a couple years back.

Broadsides:

  • The Mad Angler’s Manifesto, by Michael Delp with lino cut by Chad Pastotnik
  • If, by Rudyard Kipling with a wood engraving by Chad Pastotnik
  • Along With Youth, by Ernest Hemingway with a wood engraving by Jim Horton
  • The Trout in Winter, by Jerry Dennis with an intaglio print by Glenn Wolff
  • Where They Run, map of Montauk Point, Long Island. Intaglio by Glenn Wolff
  • September Inverness, by Robert Hass

I’ll also have along some other small ephemera which is rarely seen outside the studio.

 

 

 

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