Rick Griffith rookie

Enjoying a life with limits

How long have you been printing?


Describe your first encounter with letterpress

I was asked to help move a press and the owner of the press thought I might be interested in the process and its connection to design history. I was intrigued.

Where did you learn?

Brian Allen took me on as an apprentice for a short period, and Tom Parson, taught me some new moves while lending me some equipment.

Who was your most influential teacher?

I continue to be open to learning from friends and colleagues. My most influential teachers are the people who taught me that I might benefit from their knowledge, this act of kindness motivates me towards the same action.

What super power would you like to have?

None — thank you very much, I am enjoying a life with limits, and I think of my existing skills — when deployed perfectly (which is not often) — as adequately powerful.

Do you prefer to work alone or with others?

I don’t have a preference, a combination of the two is invigorating. Just like teaching and learning.

What do you most value in your friends?

Acceptance, forgiveness, and a capacity for love.

When do your best ideas occur to you?

Just before bed. As my eyes and mind dim.

If you were to die and come back as a typeface, which would it be?

Hellenic (lead, 14 pt.)

What tool do you use more often than any other?

A sharp blade. A sharp point.

What books are currently on your nightstand?

Too many to count at my desk but one at a time in bed. Camus/The Stranger.

If you could study with any printer throughout history, who would it be?

H.N Werkman

If you have your own shop, what equipment do you own?

Vandercook 219 AB, 1951
Chandler and Price, 7 × 10, 1896
Chandler and Price, 18 × 23, ~1930
26” Challenge guillotine
20 × 40 Epilogue Laser 

Three cabinets of wood type
One cabinet of metal type

If you could change one thing about your shop, what would it be?

+ A2 Riso Press

When and where are you the happiest?

Traveling — in between spaces

What is your greatest fear/worry?

Not being good enough.

What do you think is useful about what you make?

We make tools for the community when they need to speak up with printed words. We attach them to sticks and they are infinitely more powerful in the streets.

What’s your day job?

Same as my night job.

Do you use any other techniques or media besides letterpress?

Yes, everything.