stopping with eyes wide opentoMake™ Press & Editions

SURROUNDED BY WATER

is*land :: a tract of land surrounded by water

After drawing, the stone is etched. Then, when ready to proof the matrix, the drawing is removed, buffed up with asphaltum, cleaned with water, inked up in Shop Mix Black, and proofed. Matrix 123.3 for ‘The Island’.

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LAW :: Lithotine wash out.

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LAW :: Asphaltum Rubbing.

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LAW :: Water and Shop Mix Black Roll Up.

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Mylar Proof over Work-In-Progress checking Registration and Appearance.

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SURROUNDED BY WATER

is*land :: a tract of land surrounded by water

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Korns #3 Litho crayon on Aloys :: Making a Mark :: Edition #123 Matrix #3 :: conte crayon guide markings, gummed out non-image areas

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First Etching a ~6 drop Nitric Acid @pH2.5

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First Etching Detail of the Lake

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SURROUNDED BY WATER

is*land :: a tract of land surrounded by water

IMG_9111 - 2018-07-01 at 14-55-17_wmKorns #3 Litho crayon on Aloys :: Making a Mark :: Edition #123 Matrix #3

LevigatingAloysLevigating a stone clean :: Aloys Matrix #3 in preparation for drawing :: Edition #123

The_Island_123-2Orange Red printing from the big stone Aloys :: Edition #123 Matrix #2

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THE WORLD IN A DIFFERENT WAY

I’ve been working to complete several prints but things keep getting in the way. Like this flooding of the shop sink. But it’s all dry and put away now. Back to work.

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“Derby Street II : Water Beneath” Edition of E.V. 1/12 - 12/12.

Derby Street II Water Beneath
“I have to connect things in the world in a different way”

Anselm Kiefer | answering the question: “Why are you an artist?”

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SPELLING IS NOT MY STRENGTH

I was always the first to sit down during spelling contests. Unnecessarily humiliating. With ADD and dyslexia I had/have a difficult time and once again. . . . I’ll have to redo the photopolymer plate and start over. But why, of the many people I asked to do a look/see and check did nobody say anything ‽ Back up and start again.

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. . . & THANK YOU

A little letterpress piece fiun.

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Arrival in the mail. Delightful. Hand printed, ink on paper, delivered. . . this is Joy.

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ON THE WAY TO AUSCHWITZ

“On the way to Auschwitz the road’s pathway led straight through the heart of the Indies and of North and South America.”

David E. Stannard | American Holocaust: The Conquest of the New World


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The bulletin board in the alleyway at toMake™
On the Press: Letterpress Poster/Broadside :: A Message for the Human Tribe :: #EarthToo

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I LIKE MAPS, BECAUSE THEY LIE

Map

Flat as the table
it’s placed on.
Nothing moves beneath it
and it seeks no outlet.
Above—my human breath
creates no stirring air
and leaves its total surface
undisturbed.

Its plains, valleys are always green,
uplands, mountains are yellow and brown,
while seas, oceans remain a kindly blue
beside the tattered shores.

Everything here is small, near, accessible.
I can press volcanoes with my fingertip,
stroke the poles without thick mittens,
I can with a single glance
encompass every desert
with the river lying just beside it.

A few trees stand for ancient forests,
you couldn’t lose your way among them.

In the east and west,
above and below the equator—
quiet like pins dropping,
and in every black pinprick
people keep on living.
Mass graves and sudden ruins
are out of the picture.

Nations’ borders are barely visible
as if they wavered—to be or not.

I like maps, because they lie.
Because they give no access to the vicious truth.
Because great-heartedly, good-naturedly
they spread before me a world
not of this world.

Wisława Szymborska Winner, Nobel Prize | Map: Collected & Last Poems,
translated, from the Polish, by Clare Cavanagh & Stanistaw Baranczak

Milk River TR

Milk River T&R :: Edition of E.V.15

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EXPLANATIONS

I put down a second color, a transparent orange-red, on ‘The Island’ edition. I’m considering titling it ‘Surrounded by Water’. I don’t want to explain my maps, my visual responses anymore. There isn’t always an explanation! And next week Lent starts, as well Chinese New Year of the Dog, . . . this is a good time to touch that door knob that hasn’t an explanation.

“There isn’t always an explanation for everything.”

Ernest Hemingway | A Farewell to Arms

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Surrounded by Water. Second color from stone lithograph matrix.

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IS THE BELOVED GREEDY ?

The 2018 toMake™ Calendar, I know it’s already February, is available. You can download the PDFile and print it out yourself, or I can send you a print [13x19in. Epson K3, PostPaid N.Am. $25] just ask. Better yet, why not visit toMake™ studio, share a cup of coffee or tea with me, and avoid the tube+postage costs. If you are so inclined and enjoy the calendar, consider making a donation by check or through my PayPal Account. The poem is from Gregory Orr’s Concerning the Book That Is the Body of the Beloved. The image is a lensless image taken using a 1.5in. focal length cigar box pinhole camera on film; Strawberry Creek, UCal campus in Berkeley California.


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SEEN THROUGH THE VEIL OF THE SOUL

Second matrix for ‘The Island’ edition. Drawing with rubbing crayons and an alcohol tusche.

“If I were called upon to define briefly the word Art, I should call it the reproduction of what the senses perceive in nature, seen through the veil of the soul.”

Paul Cezanne

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Layout in conté crayon and gum arabic
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Painting out non-image areas with gum
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Alcohol tusche
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Rubbing crayon application
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Ready to etch. 12 drop nitric acid etch.
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Etched stone. Gum buff and ready to roll up.

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I DO NOT NEED TO EXPLAIN

Work in progress; drawing on the stone and two test proofs posted on the bulletin board in the alleyway. YA) It is even more difficult to reveal yourSelf.


“ … I do not need to show my work, and I do not need to explain it. If the work doesn’t talk to you, just relax. Do any of you have to define yourself? It is very difficult to define yourself. It is even more difficult to reveal yourself.”

Louise Bourgeois | Statement, 1989

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Drawing on the stone; Gum block out, Korns medium rubbing crayon and #3 Korns lithography crayon

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The bulletin board in the alleyway at toMake™

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DIFFCULTY IN THE PRESSROOM


“Painting is easy when you don't know how, but very difficult when you do.”

Edgar Degas

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The big stone ‘ALOYS’ is named in honor of Johann Alois Senefelder

Alois Senefelder
Johann Alois Senefelder (6 November 1771 – 26 February 1834), the inventor of stone lithography.

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LOOK, AND LOOK AGAIN

‘The Island’ edition, stone lithography matrix #1.


“Look, and look again,
This world is not just a little thrill for the eyes.”

Mary Oliver

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Hansa, Primsrose & Warm (Chrome) Yellows + Litho Varnish #7 and Tint Base. Proof run on newsprint with layout.

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IMPOSSIBLE THINGS

"There's no use trying," said Alice; "one can't believe impossible things."
"I dare say you haven't had much practice," said the Queen.
"When I was your age, I always did it for half an hour a day. Why, sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast."

Lewis Carroll

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In the toMake™ pressroom mixing ink

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One can not have too many pencils, ever.

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MAKING MISTAKES

Working on the edition ‘The Island,’ a five-colour/matrix stone lithograph from the large stone ALOYS. It will bleed off the bottom of a full sheet of Somerset Soft Velvet White. It feels good to be back working in the pressroom. Making mistakes and suffering is indeed an essential part of being a living member of the human tribe. ‘Not to undo suffering’ . . . but ‘to make it inform our lives.’ So I made some mistakes in the process of this edition, and it wasn’t happiness or easy . . . neither is life.


“My argument with so much of psychoanalysis, is the preconception that suffering is a mistake, or a sign of weakness, or a sign even of illness. When in fact, possibly the greatest truths we know, have come out of people’s suffering. The problem is not to undo suffering, or to wipe it off the face of the earth, but to make it inform our lives, instead of trying to ‘cure’ ourselves of it constantly, and avoid it, and avoid anything but that lobotomized sense of what they call ‘happiness’. There’s too much of an attempt, it seems to me, to think in terms of controlling man, rather than freeing him.”

Arthur Miller


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Lithography drawing materials

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Shop Mix Black proof of ‘The Island’, Edition #123, Matrix #1

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Stone Lithograph matrix #1 for ‘The Island,’ preparation for edition run.

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The Island,’ edition #123 edition notes and ink mixing. Primrose and Hansa Yellows with Tint Base and Litho Varnish #7.

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‘The Island’ matrix #1 notes.

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AS THE ROUND EARTH ROLLS

Back on the press, back to the practice and process of making; the Gift of creativity. I say back because it has been a rather challenging and stressful year in this regard. I’ve been unable to give the attention and care to this essential practice in my life. Life had other plans for my attention this year and now I’m in that wonderfully dark night time of year where the stars are bright . . . and here in the intermountain west the nights and mornings invite me out on a cold run in the hills or along the river. Finding a way back to this grand show, this edition arising from the shinning mountains of Glacier-Waterton International Peace Parks . . . and all the beauty of open space that is currently under siege, under development, under disrespect.


This grand show is eternal. It is always sunrise somewhere; the dew is never all dried at once; a shower is forever falling; vapor is ever rising. Eternal sunrise, eternal sunset, eternal dawn and gloaming, on sea and continents and islands, each in its turn, as the round earth rolls”

John Muir | John of the Mountains: The Unpublished Journals of John Muir

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Relief Matrix and Flocking from Generosity & The Way Across | Edition #109

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SURROUNDED BY WATER

Starting over, cutting my losses of time and materials . . . but regaining my artistic voice and control of the edition.


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An island or isle is any piece of sub-continental land that is surrounded by water

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IN THE SHOP & ON THE PRESS

Emerald Green and some Tint Base . . . but I had to stop the run because the blue ink wasn’t completely dry and was causing some, too much, scumming.

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Edition papers ready for more ink!

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Emerald Green

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PRINTING & MAKING


Checking the registration on ‘The Island.’ Editioned the water base in [ Imperial Blue + Litho Varnish #7 + Tint Base + Setswell ].

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I made a relief matrix from cardboard. Gaylord Lake will be printed on the chine-collé in a clear tint base or varnish.

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Proofing the varnish matrix of Gaylord Lake and the island.

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ALLEY LIFE

The edition “The Island” will have a chine-collé with relief matrix over the lithographic layers. I’ve started to draw out the island and Gaylord Lake on the matrix.

The Island copy 4

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Out & About south of the river today Noteworthy Paper and Press has reopened their newly located & renovated gift and print shop and it is wonderful.

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MIXING INK

Mixing ink and trying to make some sense of the world that surrounds, penetrates and encompasses me while editioning one of the three water matrices for ‘The Island’ edition. Imperial Blue + Tint Base + Litho Varnish #7 . . . . each their own spatula inky !

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“Don’t let us forget that the causes of human actions are usually immeasurably more complex and varied than our subsequent explanations of them.”

F. Dostoevsky | The Idiot

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IN THE PRESSROOM

I etched another water based toner tusche for the water layer on The Island edition. Then mixed some Emerald Green ink in a couple of transparent ink draws. And lastly finished making two new scraper bars. A beautiful autumn day here in the pressroom, the alley, the valley.

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Plate matrix for ‘The Island’; water layer #3

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Emerald Green with Tint Base for ‘The Island’ forested or base matrix

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Ink draws for ‘The Island’ forested areas matrix

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New 20 and 25 inch scraper bars for lithography

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IN THE SHOP TODAY

There really aren’t a lot of events as magical as water; and a lithographic wet tusche is just that, magical and amazing. I spent time mixing inks for the base plate of ‘The Island’ today. Edition of ~16 using 6 aluminum, relief & a photopolymer matrix with chine-collé.

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Stop by toMAKE™ for Espresso & a Chat with the Printer

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October 13th through November 19th M-F 10 to 5 you’re invited to stop by toMAKE™ during the 7th annual Coffeeneuring Event and I’ll make you a cup of coffee; espresso, cappuccino, pour-over, caffè latte or tea. I don’t do cup art and there is no charge. Bring your own mug or choose from my selection in the print room. You do have to stop and drink it in the shop with me. If my hands are inky you might have to pour your own (I’m busy on a new edition after all). AND you should check out the official rules if you are doing Coffeeneuring, otherwise just come on over by the alley bulletin board.

You’ll need to make a reservation first; so eMail, text or call me beforehand. Just click on the mug to the right for the link if you do not already have my contact & location information; please introduce yourself, your liquid preference, and suggested day & times.

I use filtered water from the Missoula aquifer, freshly roasted organic beans from Blackcoffee; Costa for espresso, Ethiopian Sidama for pour-over, have Yogi Tea Vanilla Hazelnut & Licorice Mint herb teas, or Tazo Zen green tea. I use local organic whole milk (if you need an alternative you should bring it) and there is a wee bit of sugar & honey around someplace and unsweetened vanilla extract.

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What the thunder has to say

I find, after all these years, I am a believer—
I believe what the thunder and lightning have to say;
I believe that dreams are real,
and that death has two reprisals;
I believe that dead leaves and black water fill my heart.

I shall die like a cloud, beautiful, white, full of nothingness.

The night sky is an ideogram,
a code card punched with holes.
It thinks it’s the word of what’s-to-come.
It thinks this, but it’s only The Library of Last Resort,
The reflected light of The Great Misunderstanding.

God is the fire my feet are held to.

by Charles Wright


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Edition #109 Generosity relief block proof on Kozo with flocking.

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Edition #109 Generosity relief block proof on Kozo printed in varnish on draft of print.

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Process & Progress

I used #4 and #5 Korns crayons to draw the shimenawa on the aluminum plate matrix. I under etched the crayon drawing using just gum but did put TAPEM on the non-image areas. After an initial rollup, hopefully successful, I’ll re-etch the plate with a stronger etch.

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Topology

You might conclude that my “maps” are fictional imaginings or inaccurate by today’s mapping paradigm standards … but this is not at all true. I spend a good amount of time to insure that they are topologically accurate. Not only are they responses to real places where I have stop’d to see and to experience but I also consult other materials both historic and current. In the case of the current edition all the passes that I can identify as supporting human crossings are marked in their respective topologically correct location. The matrix that depicts the shimenawa wrapping of sacred space also indicates a correct topology of the access corridors into and out of the space. It is likely that this is why so few people understand what I am doing when I construct a mapping response to a place. The response is not a typical map in the modern sense of the term. Below is the mylar draft showing the shimenawa and access points. This process of making a response takes time, care, and, I believe, is an original map making (a rejection of modern gis-gps-cartography).


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Shimenawa :: the wrapping of sacred space. Mylar draft for the edition #109 ‘Generosity.’

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Sacred Space

I read somewhere that Calder worked every day in his studio. I wish I could say the same. Somedays I suffer such depression it is difficult … everything is difficult. I thought today that I would see the ‘divide litho’ run completed on the ‘Generosity’ print but I was slowed by a scumming plate and I stopped the run to re-etch the open areas. The first print went fine, just the plate scumming during subsequent inking.

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So I proceeded with the layout for my initial idea of a shimenawa; used to indicate a boundary to something sacred, thus there be a sacred space called Glacier-Waterton International Peace Park! This is indicated in a stylized manner on the companion print ‘The Way Across’.

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There are places, like this, that must be wrapped by shimenawa. We are such a selfish species. In her “Memorandum to the Animals” Amy Leach says “If you are concerned about the devastation of your genetic type and you do not see your name on the Keep-Alive List, you might think about clumping some vegetation together into rafts on which to rescue yourselves… Anyway, we need the space for our works and wonders. Many of you are being superannuated because we must give priority to our machinery, our televisions and computers and refrigerators and cars, trucks, airplanes, combination microwave/convection ovens with auto-time zone adjusters. We will still bring a few of you with us, especially those of you with rumps and ribs (please refer to the Keep-Alive List). But we are not going to waste time holloing for the bush babies, waiting for the mayflies to drift in and the kiwis to materialize. We are certainly not going to stand around until the tortoises figure out what’s going on.”

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Mixing Ink

I spent some effort today mixing the ink for the continental divides matrix (I transferred the relief print onto a litho plate) on the ‘Generosity’ edition. I had anticipated flocking the wet ink but decided instead to use of stiff black, Graphic Chemical Crayon Black, mixed with Litho Varnish #5 and Hanco Master Palette Fire Red. I’ve got to stop this seemingly endless matrix making. Now I want to add a border to the edition as I am not using the ‘The Way Across’ border on this print. You can see the ink draw on the lower right on the mock-up below.

“It is not down in any map; true places never are.” Herman Melville | Moby Dick

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on the press again

This week I’ve been back in the pressroom working on the changes to the Generosity & The Way Across edition. On wet ink (a soft black on Kozo) gently brush on the flocking pigments then remove from the non-inked areas. Working proof to evaluate the changes to the matrix in the Comeau Pass area.

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YA) The River Again

Here is a proof of the print “River Form” without the collage paper(s). I am still considering a delicate lithograph layer under or within the river form that details the rivers Clark Fork and Bitterroot coming together west of Missoula. The pinkish tint is due to the indoor lighting, but you can see the effect of the varnish tint without pigment, with the gold flocking of the golden mean, and the black outer border.

“When people are ready to, they change. They never do it before then… You can’t make them change if they don’t want to.” Andy Warhol
The River

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YA) The River

Work on the ‘River Form’ print continues. It’s a large matrix and takes some time to proof and develop. I am considering a lithograph layer using a water tusche that will show through the varnish of the river form and tint the piece. Although the print right now utilizes only one (relief) matrix, the matrix was inked in two colors and gold flocked (on the golden rectangle) thus the appearance of three separate colors. The green tint comes from a sheet of green Kozo placed beneath the proof (showing stronger beneath the transparent litho varnish), and the water forms on the right side from another sheet, again placed beneath the proof. Both of these sheets are to visualize how might the lithograph tusche develop the edition. I’m thinking of “YA) the river” but that can wait.

River Forms

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The World Which Actually Is

The bulletin board in the alleyway at toMake™. The world which actually is is a ‘race against time’ … ‘the road not taken’ … and a ‘climate changed’.

“We are living in a culture entirely hypnotized by the illusion of time, in which the so-called present moment is felt as nothing but an infinitesimal hairline between an all-powerfully causative past and an absorbingly important future. We have no present. Our consciousness is almost completely preoccupied with memory and expectation. We do not realize that there never was, is, nor will be any other experience than present experience. We are therefore out of touch with reality. We confuse the world as talked about, described, and measured with the world which actually is. We are sick with a fascination for the useful tools of names and numbers, of symbols, signs, conceptions and ideas.” Alan Watts

bulletin board

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We drink the same water

River Form” is a large relief matrix that I’ve yet to edition. Cut from Sentra a decade ago it depicts the Clark Fork meanders on Kelly Island west of Missoula, Mont. embedded in the ‘golden mean’ and irreverent property ownership. What remains of a place when it is defined by place names of dead white Europeans who never set foot, by pavement covering the soft earth underfoot, by lawns of strange grasses infested with poisons, by houses made from plastics and set on rectangular grids imposed on the land and fenced with signs saying PRIVATE … ? Ink selection trials, litho varnish, gold flocking and black, on Kozo and chine-collé. I have no love for the destruction currently being wrought of this beautiful earth. The earth is not private … we all drink the same water.

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“Water is good, so is thirst; … shadow is good, so is sun; … the honey from the rosemarys … and the honey of the bare fields.” Antonio Machado

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Silly Human & High Water

I got a new old rug for the upstairs studio, cleaned it and set it on a nice pad. This will make morning exercises a bit more comfy. However Meena the Cat has decided that the rug is hers, not mine; silly human. I cannot keep it flat on the floor ! The snow is mostly gone from the river trail making morning runs less hazardous, I was able to go out along the trail all the way to the gate this morning without having to jump snow patches. The Clark Fork River is muddy and high. The river usually crests in late May to early June but right now it is 12,200 cf3/s which is considerably greater than the usual mean discharge for March; 3,490 cf3/s. If I read the data correctly this is a record for this time of year, the previous being from 1972. On another water note; once again our insurance will not cover damages to the flooding in the Parsonage basement. I wonder what good is insurance‽ I’ve submitted several claims over the years always having been rejected. They pay their adjusters a lot of money to find out how not to honor any claims, always in the small print there is a reason. Silly human don’t you realize that insurance is just another word for scam.

Meena the Cat

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Waters Beneath

The Parsonage, I am told on authority, has been experiencing an unusual amount of flooding in the basement. The Colville River (and the Chewelah Creek system), more or less a drainage ditch on behalf of the valley wheat farmers, is quite high. Water is really an amazing force; THE element that gets larger when colder. Think about this little detail for a minute. This expanding and contracting accounts for much of the dynamic forces that shape the planet, crushing rocks. One night when, as building and grounds manager in a Catskill resort, as a winter flooding was coming down the Panther Kill I was awoken by a deep low sound I’d never heard before. In the morning I discovered that massive boulders, some 20 and more feet tall, had been carried down the creek in the flooding. Well, water changes things. The basement flood at the Parsonage in Chewelah reminds me of the Derby Street community that sits atop a buried east bay creek in Berkeley. High waters bring flooding to their basements as well. Derby Street II Waters Beneath, a multi-matrix lithograph, is a response to the waters in motion beneath us.

Derby Street II Water Beneath

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Storytelling

A job on the press today; for the Reverend on her travels. Ink on paper. Mixed Red #32 and Reflex Blue and set type, made some changes, in Century 12 point. Basically the only serif font I have in a text weight. Ran 100 and cleaned up and oiled the 19th century Gordon press. Feels good doing this tactile stuff. I only wish I could have started earlier in life. I met Robert Bly back in the late 60s at Sigurd Olson’s place in Ely, Minn., one night over dinner; both of us having made a surprise visit to Elizabeth and Sig’s place. We became friends and exchanged poems and stories. Once, we fell asleep under a tree in the autumn in a park and later he sent me the most wonderful book I had ever seen. A small book, hand printed, letterpress, bound in a beautiful blue cover. Just one three line poem. I have kept it close now all these years because he told me a story that found its way inward and inward and is still traveling ….

“Storytelling, you know, has a real function. The process of the storytelling is itself a healing process, partly because you have someone there who is taking the time to tell you a story that has great meaning to them. They’re taking the time to do this because your life could use some help, but they don’t want to come over and just give advice. They want to give it to you in a form that becomes inseparable from your whole self. That’s what stories do. Stories differ from advice in that, once you get them, they become a fabric of your whole soul. That is why they heal you.” Alice Walker

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between seasons

Between the seasons, I think that is where we are right now, somedays melting and raining and others snowing and cold … as I started to say, between brings up all the unsettled and unresolved. I was out and about and pass’d my old voice teacher, the most wonderful of radiant voices, and we got talking and spoke of the practice room. YA) the practice room. Returning again and again. What is it I have intended to do this lifetime ?

“…I seemed to do none of the things I intended to do — I didn’t seem to be quite present anywhere —” Georgia O’Keeffe, in a letter to Margaret Kiskadden

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