Monday, February 11, 2013

Heart pasties & a bloody heart: Firecracker Press on the *Inferna* design

Cover design of Inferna by Eric Woods, The Firecracker Press

Like we were saying, Poetry Scores is hosting a book release party for Stefene Russell's new chapbook Inferna (Intagliata Imprints). The release party will be held 7 to 11 p.m. Friday, February 15 at Mad Art Gallery (2727 So. 12th Street). Stefene will read with five other poets: Chris King, Mali Newman, Chris Parr, Nicky Rainey and Joseph Sulier.

Like most Poetry Scores releases, Inferna is being done in partnership with The Firecracker Press. One pleasure of working with Firecracker is that Eric Woods really gets into the spirit of what we are doing. He puts a lot of thought and design into how he responds visually to the poetry he prints for us. It's not a client pitch. It's an artist sharing process with other artists.

His style is to call you into the shop for a meeting, and sit down in the front room facing Cherokee Street and tell you his story, face to face. That is the experience Stefene got with Inferna. Eric summarized his presentation for the rest of us:

In reading through everything, considering the reference material (female figure, psychedelic posters, carnival imagery, boxing posters, etc.), and doing our own research we started sketching.

At the start, I remembered an old magnesium printing cut I'd been given by a woman in Jeff City 10 years ago. She gave me a box full of old stuff that was mostly rust and dirt. Digging through, I came across the image that you see on the cover ... or a version of it, at least.

The look on this woman's face was perfect and, when put into the context of the cover design, seemed beautiful and burning. She's got a heart of gold and a darkside - heart pasties, heart tattoos, and a bloody human heart in her hand. The paper will be a faded yellow color with dirty yellow, bright orange, and deep red tones printed onto it.

Inferna is the second publication in a series by Intagliata Imprints, in partnership with Poetry Scores and Firecracker Press. The inaugural chapbook in the series what Shape of a Man by Chris King, and Eric designed Inferna mindful of the predecessor.

"The type treatment of the title/author mirrors Shape of a Man," Eric notes. "Shape of a Man had a letter 'a' to bring attention to the chip of stone on the cover. Inferna has a letter 'b' to continue the series and call attention to the heart in her hand."


The publication of Inferna is being made possible by an Indiegogo campaign. The Indiegogo page has great content -- David Clewell's review of the poem cycle, Kevin's Belford's video poem to an excerpt from Inferna. The campaign ends Friday, the day of the book party.

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