Image 1 of Printer's Tears Image 2 of Printer's Tears Image 3 of Printer's Tears Image 4 of Printer's Tears Image 5 of Printer's Tears

Printer's Tears


During a residency at the International Printing Museum in Los Angeles, I had the opportunity to work with type from the David M. Norton Collection, full of 19th century typographic gems. My visit overlapped with a relentless heatwave and several rainshowers. Being from rainy Washington state, it seemed like the ideal inspiration when I discovered what appeared to be rain—or tears—intended for border material. Labeled Unique Border 215, the drips came in corner pieces, single drips, and the ones I used, in triplicate. Some stunning 48-line wood type numerals made fine clouds, and the next pass, inspired by an English nursery rhyme, was set with Ionic Comp. and Antique Extended. I utilized concentric rings to set Livermore; Gothic Ornate No. 2 and Satanick in the clouds. The sixth and last pass of the edition was set in tiny, delicate Geometric Italic which also includes an “and” catchword—definitely the smallest I have ever seen.

The edition of 100 prints on soft white Arches paper measures 11 x 18 inches and is signed by the artist. Proceeds from half the edition go directly to the International Printing Museum to support their efforts in educational outreach and preservation of the tools and traditions of letterpress printing.

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