Sunday, May 31, 2009


My friends at House Industries have finally launched their newest venture, the PhotoLettering Inc. (aka PLINC) library. Here's the history of PLINC directly from the new website:

Photo-Lettering was a mainstay of the advertising and design industry in New York City from 1936 to 1997. PLINC, as it was affectionately known to art directors, was one of the earliest and most successful type houses to utilize photo technology in the production of commercial typography and lettering. It employed such design luminaries as Ed Benguiat and sold type drawn by the likes of Herb Lubalin, Milton Glaser and Seymour Chwast as well as countless other unsung lettering greats. The company is best known by most of today's graphic designers for its ubiquitous type catalogs.

Physically, the collection takes up about 1500 cubic ft (42 cubic meters) of space and consists of film negatives and positives of most of the 6500 fonts produced in the company's 55 years. There are also countless patterns, cartouches, borders and dingbats, all of which have been preserved in film negative form. Each negative is approximately 28 in (71 cm) by 5 in (13 cm) high.

House Industries, a Yorklyn, Delaware-based independent type foundry, purchased the entire physical assets of Photo-Lettering in April of 2003. Through a partnership with Ken Barber, Christian Schwartz and Erik van Blokland, House Industries is carefully digitizing select alphabets from the collection and plans to offer them through a modern web-based interface.

The Photo-Lettering interface has allowed us to reach beyond the rigid confines of typography to offer extended features such as layering, color control and multiple master interpolation over six axes. With some of the most talented minds in display typography behind this new display lettering system, users of the system will enjoy the same refined typography as the the original Photo-Lettering customers.

I can't wait to get the assignment that justifies the indulgence of this new service!

Monday, May 18, 2009


I am honing my letterpressing chops, which is pretty easy to do, thanks to LaLa Press. Located on the edge of Atwater Village/Los Feliz, Mable Lee's modest print shop is home to all sorts of amazing equipment and machinery. Did I mention that all of the presses are solar powered!? What a beautiful blend of anachronistic and contemporary technologies...

Saturday, May 16, 2009


I have been designing a new print edition which will be released in June. Above is the finished, hand-cut rubylith that will serve as the film to burn the screens...needless to say, it was a welcome challenge of patience and discipline to execute. Dig my one-off, custom anodized X-Acto, too.

More info will follow once the release date is finalized with the publisher

Thursday, May 7, 2009


Thank you very much to those of you who showed your support for these new works today. It's gonna be a busy weekend.


...making some adjustments to the store 'inventory' and getting some of the newest works up. Of course, they're all for sale.

These are testers from a recent set of studies into nonrepresentational (imageless) screenprints. Instead of using the medium (screenprinting) as a tool to mechanically and repeatably reproduce an edition of the same information/image, the medium (screenprinting) is being used to produce unique, individual, 1/1 editions. Also completely eliminated from the process  is intentionally regenerated/reproduced/represented imagery; there is no stencil, no film, no amberlith that has been transferred onto an emulsion-coated mesh of a stretched and framed screen. There are only the primary elements/tools present; the ink, the squeegee, the silkscreen and the substrate. 

Check this earlier post for a little more confusion/information.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009


OK, now I am not quite sophistimocated enough to be an authentic type geek, BUT I would like to think I know skill when I see it. It's no secret that I am an absolute fanatic about nearly every aspect of House Industries product/services, but one of the guys who is responsible for their unique solutions is Ken Barber. I have witnessed first hand what this guy can freehand with a Sharpie and it's nothing short of amazing. His dedication to both research and craft shines through every project he tackles. There's a recent interview with Ken over at Type Theory that seems to reinforce my own editorial hyberbole.

If THAT wasn't enough, Ken also thumbs bass guitar AND vocals in the House Band. Featured on the accompanying Blaktur CD, is the instant classic, Suburban Curse. Dig the lyrics:

"I blow my allowance
On 'rare' 45s
And my pompous fanzine
That people despise

Over-privileged, bored and scared
Living dead suburban nightmare!

You had better watch your back
When you're in my cul-de-sac
'Cause that ain't no goin' back
If my mom's Volvo gets a scratch!

The life I live is so damn hard

It's always, "Take out the garbage and mow the yard!"
No respect: no one cares
After art school, I'm outta there!

Where is the passion 
I thought I had?
Then somehow it happened
I turned into my dad

So mind-numbingly rehearsed
This is my Suburban curse....Cursed."

You can also check out Ken Barber's blog at

Friday, May 1, 2009


Over the past few months, I hopefully there has been a thing or two shown here that YOU, my loyal and dedicated reader, have "wished" you could purchase. Well, today is your lucky day! Making a soft launch this weekend, is the Juliet Romeo Foxtrot online clearing house....wait.....I mean, STORE! It's still fairly primitive and scarce at the moment, BUT I will be adding more prints, paintings, drawings and other works over the coming months, I promise. Please check back often. And buy some stuff. 


There are definitely some strange characters in the neighborhood surrounding my Silver Lake studio. Probably the most fascinating (and annoying) is this old Armenian man who owns no less than FOUR totally ragged, dilapidated, American cars and trucks. And the thing that is so strange is not that he owns multiple, nearly useless cars, but that fact he only drives them when it's time to dodge the weekly street sweeping zones. Other than that, they just stay parked along the street. And in front of my studio. ARGH.

It's as if the public street is his self-styled, jalopy-storage lot....and this guy spends about half a day moving each one of wrecks, making sure the vehicle is exactly six inches away from the curb, etc. It's absolutely fascinating and hilarious for me to watch each week. SO hilarious that when I was recently working on some commercial illustrations for a children's book, I repurposed one of the characters, outfitted him in some house slippers, an oversized, slovenly shirt, and added a Dwayne Schneider-esque key ring to his pudgy fingers.

His actions are almost like a work of unintentional, post-modern, Ozero Sevan performance art. The shows run weekly: Wednesdays 12-2pm/Fridays 12-2pm on 1000 block Myra Avenue.