From Poetry Prints to Greeting Cards

At the book launch Q&A for Florida Man: Poems, Revisited, Gloria Muñoz asked Chad Mize and me about our multiple artistic pursuits. Chad creates work from murals to merch, and, I, as Gloria mentioned, recently started a line of greeting cards. 

The greeting cards came from the poetry prints I first made with Kaitlin Crockett at Print St. Pete (as discussed in this post). I see them as an extension of my poetry: they combine imagery with punchy lines and/or puns.



I write, draw, design, and print these cards on a risograph, which is like the love child of Xerox and screen-printing.

The risograph originated in Japan, and offices/schools first used these printers to make bulk copies. This printing-making method “has undergone a resurgence with creatives adopting the process because of its tactile and unique results”(Risotto). 

In “Repurposing Risograph Machines,” Joyce Lee argues the printer’s popularity is “a response to technological advances and resulting societal changes, acting as a reprieve to digital modes of aesthetic and community engagement.” I think that’s similar to why I — and a lot of other people — like greeting cards: they remind us we’re human. 



Now, I’m going to give a brief look at my (current) process.   

I take a black-and-white design into Photoshop to make layers that the risograph will print in color.

Each color uses a separate ink drum. These weigh about 15 pounds. I manually switch these out each time I want to layer a color.

I first make a proof of the card on regular printer paper. I sometimes need to adjust the registration to get the look I want.



After I’m happy with the proof, I repeat this full process on cardstock – hand-feeding paper through the machine and switching out the ink drums.

The card in this image uses three colors: black, fluorescent pink, and blue. This means I changed out three ink drums and ran the paper through three times to layer the colors.

I can fit two cards on an 8.5×11 piece of cardstock, so I take this completed print and then score, fold, cut, and package the cards.



I sell my cards on Etsy, and they’re currently stocked at places like Neat Neat Neat, Third House Books (Gainesville), and Pageboy

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