Tell us a little about yourselves; what makes you tick and what makes your publications tick?
I'm a letterpress printer, educator graphic designer and self proclaimed illustrator. My main mediums are paper + emotions. What makes me tick? Tea, lots of it. Nature. The sky. Whiskey. Drawing. Vomiting my emotions out onto a page. Sending thing into the world that will hopefully bring ease and tenderness. My one liner that I've been using for a while is "a tender queer, early morning art making human that wants to fuck shit up with empathy." All I want to do is disrupt limiting and oppressive forms of being. Questions everything. And love as fiercely as I can. My wish is to hug every person I see, and tell them they are not alone.
What drewyou to creating, publishing, editing and presenting your projects?
Wanting to do everything myself. I love all parts of the process. The conceptualizing and creating content, the designing and printing and binding. I love that I can have an idea and a finished piece (or at least a good prototype) within a day. Honestly, I'm a control freak and must do it all. All the things always.
What do you think of the relationship between publishing (what you do) and reaching an audience of readers?
All I want to do is make people feel safe and loved. Unfortunately my arms only reach so far, and my own anxious introverted heart prefers to mostly stay tucked away in my studio. So I make books and zines and prints. I put things into the world that will make us feel a little less lonely. Everything I make feels like a love letter to my audience and myself.
Can you tell us about your creative, editorial, and collaborative process?
I love collaborative projects, I thrive on the exchange of energy. I usually am working on both solo and collaborative projects at any given time. I'm currently eyeballs deep in a project called On Being in Your Body: A Guide to Writing Yourself with my friend Victoria Emanuela. It's a series of publications and workshops/classes about being in your body + writing manifestos.
My process begins with needing / wanting / feeling something, and making a drawing or mind map about it. I'm forever thinking about mental health, identity, relationships, sexuality, intimacy and self care. Most my work revolves around these concepts. These concepts are framed within the lens of healing and tenderness for those around me, and for myself. Nearly everything I create is something I needed or was looking for, I created a winter survival guide to get me through last winter, and a tiny book with things todo when I was feeling anxious to carry in my pocket. When I found myself crying all the time, I started documenting where I cried, and then turned it into a zine about the power of tears.
What advice would you give to someone starting a small press or publishing project?
Make the thing you are looking for. Need a book on winter survival? Write it. You don't have to have all the answers. It's better to ask questions than to bullshit perfect answers, in my opinion. Answers are one-sided, limiting and often exist within a strict binary. Questions are beautiful wondrous things that hold space for conversation and different ideas. Ask them all!
What would you have told your younger self about what you are doing? and What do you hope your older self might tell the you of today?
Dear little Caitlin, it's okay to feel a lot. To feel too much. There is no right way to feel or experience the world. There is more than one way of being. I love you, fiercely.
Dear Caitlin, the only one holding you back is you. Let go of fear + comparison. It's all just a form of procrastination, and we don't have time for it. I'm proud of you. Love, your future self.
Other than your own projects, what are some other presses and publications that inspire you to keep reading and supporting the small press community?
Kate Bingaman Burt! My queen and constant inspiration. I want to be her when I grow up.
Marlee Grace just self published a poignant and powerful book about her practice of dancing everyday. She also creates zines about addiction + how to not always be working.
Adam JK, everything he touches is pure gold. I get so much inspiration from him, his work ethic and depressing humor.