Jennifer Blanco is a principal and designer at Houston-based Spindletop Design, a firm specializing in branding, web site, and publication design services. She is also co-founder of the letterpress studio Workhorse Printmakers, as well as Product Superior, which offers paper goods and custom invitation design. Blanco studied at the School of Visual Arts in New York and currently serves on the board of directors of AIGA Houston as Vice President.
Brenda Cooper is a marketer and graphic designer with an interest in photography for 14 years. After discovering the alternative photographic process of cyanotypes, she has been sharing it with others through workshops and kits. Cooper has a bachelor’s in communication and an MBA in Marketing from the University of St. Thomas, including photography courses at the Glassell School of Art, and her creative side draws her to artistic projects such as letterpress printing, stationary design and crafts. She is president of the MPH Printers Guild.
Charles Criner is the Artist in Residence at The Printing Museum. Charles is the kind of artist that likes to “exhaust” the medium. He “pulls” his prints in black and white, then in color, and on top of that he sometimes adds acrylic over the print to produce original paintings on paper. He, however, is also parsimonious, or rather, enjoys the limitations of using only three colors and no more to make his prints. Furthermore, he is the kind of artist / craftsman who prizes the concrete relationship between himself and his work. Criner always pulls prints himself, never letting other professional printers do this for him.
John Earles is the co-founder and designated pressman at Workhorse Printmakers, a boutique letterpress studio. When not laboring over making a deep impression or maintaining ink, he can be found illustrating for paper goods at Product Superior. Earles received his Master of Fine Arts at the School of Visual Arts in New York and teaches letterpress at the University of Houston. John currently serves as the Director of Operations for AIGA Houston and Secretary on the Board of Directors of The Printing Museum.
Kathy Gurwell has years experience in the fields of paper and printing, beginning with her graphic arts study in Paris and continuing as a Curator Fellow at Tamarind Lithography Institute in Albuquerque, NM and most recently at the Museo della Carta in Fabriano, Italy. She has demonstrated papermaking in San Francisco, Santa Fe, and Houston, where she now lives. Her artistry in this field was recognized a few years ago when Lord & Taylor invited her to display and sell her products at a show of Santa Fe artists in their principal New York City store. More recently she was commissioned to make a 40 x 40 in. piece of paper for the Houston Center for Contemporary Craft.
Cindy Haller is a graphic designer specializing in custom lettering, calligraphy, bookbinding, book arts, paper and fiber arts. Since 1979, she has conducted workshops and demonstrations for businesses, arts organization, and private individuals in Texas and New Mexico, and the around the U.S. She is a member of the Houston Calligraphy Guild and the Texas Chapter of the Guild of Bookworkers.
Charles Jones recently retired as head of the Printmaking/Book Arts program at Stephen F. Austin University. Charles is a printmaker, co-founder of the LaNana Creek Press, and the Regents Professor of Art at the University. Jones has also designed books and printed under his Crazy Creek Press imprint. His books may be found in major collections in both the United States and Great Britain. He has had a long career in Printmaking with a major interest in the relief print. His recent series of large format woodcuts may be seen here. Charles is also a player of old time and Irish music on fiddle and banjo.
Melanie Wade Leslie
Melanie Wade Leslie has a BFA in painting from Sam Houston State University and an MFA in studio art from the University of Houston. For three decades she has specialized in hand-pulled transfer processes and has taught printmaking at Houston Baptist University for 13 years, continually researching low toxicity methods and materials for the benefit of her students. She feels that it is important to maintain the integrity of tradition while exploring contemporary applications and finds experimental means of expression to be challenging and rewarding.
A native of San Antonio, Myssie’s art education began in Montessori pre-school and was supplemented and encouraged by her artist mother. A high school graduate of Interlochen Arts Academy, she earned a BA with a concentration in studio art from Trinity University. A summer in Japan with Parsons The New School for Design influenced her direction toward books and paper. Since 1993 she has attended classes at the American Academy of Bookbinding in Telluride Colorado. She is co-founder of the Houston Book Arts Group and Volunteer Bookbinder at the Museum of Printing History.
Rikki Mitman found respite in art from a very matter-of-fact career as a business and technical writer. A self-taught hand papermaker and paper caster, her love of paper and its possibilities is very apparent in her paper vessels, as well as her use of altered papers in mixed-media collage. A well-known Houston instructor, Mitman enjoys teaching nearly as much as she enjoys making. She also teaches privately, and as an adjunct at Lone Star College.
Lena Le Moal
Lena Le Moal is a professional bookbinder, originally from France and now based in Houston. After earning degrees in science, art history, and bookbinding, she apprenticed in studios of master French bookbinders. She has furthered her conservation skills at the Harry Ransom Center at the University of Texas at Austin, and now in private practice. She is a member of the American Institute for Conservation and is a volunteer at the Museum of Printing History.
John-Michael Perkins is originally from Jackson, Tennessee. He received his MFA in Book Arts from The University of Alabama and has lived in Houston since 2013. Besides everything book arts related, his hobbies include reading, drawing, spinning basketballs on his finger, and cooking.
Suzanne Powney works as a freelance graphic designer and letterpress printer. With a background in both architecture and graphic design, she has worked in her own letterpress studio for seven years and teaches letterpress workshops at University of Houston and with the MPH Printers Guild. She does printing demonstrations for local clubs to share her knowledge of letterpress with the community. With a love for texture and ink on paper, her passion lies with letterpress printing and design. She currently operates BlackDog Press out of her home in the Heights.
Janet Reynolds is an artist/teacher. She currently teaches art in Pasadena ISD to 5th and 6th grade students. She is a book artist and enjoys learning new ways to make accordion books, hand stitched books, and experimenting with other forms of sculptural bookmaking. She has exhibited her work in the US and Mexico. Janet earned her BFA from Notre Dame College in Manchester, NH and her MA in Art Education from Boston University. She is a member of the Houston Book Arts Guild, the Guild of Book Workers, and the Miniature Book Society.
Armando Rodriguez was born in Mexico. He received a BFA from the University of Houston in 1982. He works in many media including graphic design, photography, printmaking (etching, lithography, and monotype), and bookmaking. He presently works for the Houston Chronicle, Art League of Houston and the education department of the Museum of Fine Arts Houston.
David Shields is the Assistant Chair of Design in the Department of Art & Art History at the University of Texas at Austin. At UT he has been engaged in the physical research of the Rob Roy Kelly American Wood Type Collection, organizing and clarifying the historical importance of the wood types while expanding the information available on the often-elusive histories of these designs. Shields holds a B.F.A. from Memphis State University and a M.F.A. from Cranbrook Academy of Art. His work may be found in many publications, as well as institutional collections. In 2001 Shields helped found the design studio, Viewers Like You.
Lee Steiner has been teaching herself and others hand papermaking and the book arts for more than a dozen years and has maintained her own art business and studio for eons.
Amanda Stevenson is the director of the newly formed Austin Book Arts Center. She cut her teeth in the book arts at the Center for Book Arts in New York City, where she was the Registrar/Administrator from 2004-2007. Availing herself with many classes in bookbinding and letterpress, she learned from some of the best. Before coming to ABAC, she worked for seven years at The Printing Museum in Houston, primarily as the Curator, where she was responsible for organizing exhibitions, collections management, and education programs. She holds a Master’s degree in Library Science from Pratt Institute in Brooklyn, with a concentration in special collections management, and a BA in Art History from UT Austin. She has been teaching Letterpress Business Cards since 2008
David J. Webb
David J. Webb is an artist working principally at Glassell School, The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston. His various works on paper have been seen in Glassell exhibitions. He has numerous block prints, etchings, lithographs, and photographs in private collections from Houston to Tokyo, Zürich, and Poltava, Ukraine. Strongly informed by a background in genetics and evolutionary biology, his work functions on the cusp between art and science.