Peridot Press ~ Hawaii
(Susi Schneider)

Susi Sneider: "I first studied writing at the University of Illinois at Urbana. I resumed studies later at the University of Wisconsin at Madison. While there, I first studied letterpress printing and papermaking with Walter Hamady in the Department of Art. I started The Peridot Press in 1981 while at University of Wisconsin."

By Geoffrey Black
Drawings by Thomas Pinkert
Iowa City: Peridot Press, 2001. Edition of 52.

7 x 11";38 pages. Handset type and letterpress printed. Illustrations printed from polymer plates in three colors. Oakdale Walnut cover paper and Oakdale Walnut Crinkle end sheets. Printed dry on Oakdale flax text paper (B4 and B9) with handmade watermarked gampi and abaca-cotton papers (both made and watermarked by printer). Bound using vellum tackets and handspun flax thread. Wrapped in folders of rawhide leather.

In memoriam: Geoffrey Black, 1951 - 1986

Susi Schneider: "Apparitions’ author (Geoffrey Black) is a poet, originally from Ohio, who lived in Louisiana for years first working as a ship welder and later as a University writing instructor at Lake Charles, LA and Beaumont, TX. He died in 1986 in his mid-thirties. Thomas Pinkert is a writer and artist originally from Minnesota who currently resides in Hawaii. He is the author of The Fox and The Farmer published by the Salient Seedling Press, and The Big Field and Hesitation published by Poote Press.

"I got the idea for the non-adhesive tacket binding from looking at the calligrapher Thomas Ingmire’s one-of-a-kind Canto V. Dante’s Inferno book when he visited Iowa City for an impromptu exhibition at UI’s Center For The Book (Some of the papers he used were made at the University of Iowa’s Oakdale Mill.). He used tackets at the foredge to bind the book pages and I thought that this device might work in a similar way to adhere and reinforce my non-adhesive cover to the text pages. I decided to reveal the vellum tacket arrowheads on the inside of the cover because I liked the visual effect. I always print on dry paper (instead of dampened) which usually gives me more printing time flexibility and protects against text size shrinkage, but in the case of printing Apparitions it proved to be a massive engineering challenge because I chose the coarse Oakdale Mill flax text paper. To get a good impression printing dry I had to use oil-based inks (Relief and Litho inks) instead of the rubber-based inks (like Van Son) that are now more commonplace even in fine press. I am very thankful to Kim Merker for giving me his counsel on the aesthetic decisions I made for Apparitions. Larry Yerkes gave me much appreciated feedback on my tacket binding structure and folder, as did Timothy Barrett and Lynn Amlie in terms of fashioning the watermarked Gampi and making the abaca centerpiece."


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A Bird in the Hand
By S. M. Schneider
N.p.: Peridot Press, 1986. Edition of 100.

5.125 x 7.125"; 30 pages. Handset type and letterpress printed dry on Japanese paper. Wood engravings (including one fold-out illustration) by Pati Scobey. Case bound in linen with heat-stamped cover ornament illustration (bound & heat-stamped by Katherine Kuehn based on printer’s design).

Poems by Susi Schneider:

Up From Down Under
Autumn Scene
A Bird in the Hand
Feel My Heartbeat
Protective Coating
The World at Your Fingertips

Excerpt from A Bird in the Hand

          The bushes in front hide the porch inside
          where you spend your time.
          Wide bamboo curtains help to keep the outside out. ...

Susi Schneider: "A Bird in the Hand is my own book of poetry. I studied writing at University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana with Laurence Lieberman, and at University of Wisconsin at Madison with Ronald Wallace and Kelly Cherry. Pati Scobey is a visual artist and printmaker who lives in Michigan. Pati designed the opening “swooping bird” illustrations to play off the translucence of my choice of the Japanese text paper. I added a foldout structure to the book to accommodate the artist’s large wood engraving. I commissioned Katherine Kuehn, who is also a fine bookbinder, to execute the edition binding of this book from my full French cloth design prototype. I was leaving to spend a year in Banaras, India and did not have time to bind the edition before my departure. I wanted to make this book available for sale while I was abroad (This is the only Peridot Press book that I was not able to edition bind.). It was Kathy’s idea, with input from the artist, to add the heat-stamped debossed bird on the cover. I was delighted to see the final version of it when I returned."

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Night Breezes and the Next Tomorrow
By Danann McDermott
Madison, Wisconsin: Peridot Press, 1984. Edition of 75.

5.75 x 10"; 15 pages. Handset type and letterpress printed dry. Illustrations printed from zinc plates in five colors. Handmade cover paper (made by printer) with glitter embellishments attached to silk screened cover illustration, French door accordion-folded Japanese kozo text paper printed on one sheet which unfolds as a broadsheet, bound with silver thread.

This book of poetry is the third book from Peridot Press.

Susi Schneider: "Night Breezes and The Next Tomorrow’s author (Danann McDermott) is a Wisconsin poet who also writes fiction. Katherine Kuehn is a visual artist now living in NYC who owns and operates the Salient Seedling Press and prints for Pace Editions. Penny McElroy who contributed to the execution of the cover illustration is a Professor of Art at the University of Redlands.

"The book was printed on a single length of Japanese paper. I did not want to have to cut the Japanese paper to print it, but the Vandercook SP15 Proof Press’s bed would not accommodate a single lengthwise sheet. To solve this dilemma I prefolded the paper into the French door accordion structure before printing on it. This proved to be a bit tricky in terms of registration and required several extra press runs to pull it off, but I was able to accomplish my goal. Also, I printed the illustrations in 4 subtly different shades of blue (as per the artist’s instructions) in addition to the other ink colors. The original instructions I gave to the artist were that I wanted her illustration to work off my French door binding structure concept so that people could turn the pages in any order and still get a complete visual experience. Also, I wanted the book to work visually fully extended and I think it does. It is usually displayed that way in exhibitions."


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By Stephen M. Miller
illustrations by Stephanie Newman
Madison, Wisconsin: Peridot Press, 1983. Edition of 60.

5.375 x 7"; 30 pages. Handset type and letterpress printed dry. Illustrations printed from zinc plates in two colors. Handmade cover and text paper made by Susi Schneider. Concertina binding. Printed spine and cover illustration. Other insets fishing line and lure. Bound with silver thread.

Colophon: "Backwaters, the second book of The Peridot Press, ... brings together the talents of Stephen Miller, poet and explorer of human natures, and Stephanie Newman, artist and, for this book, haunter of diners and bowling alleys. "

Susi Schneider: "Backwaters’ author (Stephen M. Miller) is a poet from Wisconsin who worked for years as a managing editor for the Journals Division of the University of Wisconsin Press in Madison and previously attended the Iowa Writers Workshop. The poet is also an avid fisherman so I included an actual fish line and fishhook as homage to his life style. Stephanie Newman is a visual artist who is a Professor of Design at Montana State University at Bozeman. I believe her whimsical vignette illustrations really work very well with these poems."

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Page last update: 01.18.12


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