The love I feel for my press is, like all loves, hard to describe. I hardly know its origins, but I have a felt sense that my longing to be part of a New York City moment which no longer exists – an era of sign painting, lettering, printing, deli counters with functional but somehow tender menus – all of this, this era, cannot belong to me, but I hunger for it. So when we lived in Brooklyn, back when I was changing diapers and my greatest escape was the Park Slope Community Bookstore, I took in, unfiltered, the delicious gravity of words block-lettered on places like street food vans – grilled cheese, waffles, green smoothies – each word became less abstract and more sculptural.
When we’ve got kids at our feet it seems as though the world is passing us by – as though we can see it, and move through it, but our sphere of contribution has inexplicably shrunk to the size of a living room, a kitchen, a washer-dryer, and a nursery. Now though I look back on this time (my kids are 6 and 4 now) and see it is as a fallow period. It is, to our creative lives, as winter is to Nature. Everything may seem dead, but this sleepy season is Earth’s greatest rejuvenator. We may not believe spring will come but it does.
In this spirit, despite having no idea what I was doing, I had my first go on our Adana letterpress yesterday. What’s on your growing edge today?