Gold Cartridge: Behind the Motherboard

The  Gold Cartridge Show is upon us. It has been a long road with a lot of thinking and planing and talking and planing and emailing and waiting and emailing and some foot work and finally a little bit of hanging. And of course when it came time to release the show onto the public I had double booked myself for the weekend so I missed it all. Luckily we will be hosting music and partying every Saturday while the show is up. Either way, figuring out our first fully independent art show has been quite the experience. Making it all happen isn’t as hard as people will tell you it is, especially when you have a group of cool cats all working towards the same goal. Things got a little loosey goosey in the middle when no one wanted to take the reigns, but everyone handled their own and finished their parts of the project with flying colors. Here is a link to a video the Wildes put together as a teaser for the show.

We gave ourselves a two month window to complete this project and it seemed to be a perfect amount of time for our first attempt. As we put on more shows certain steps will get easier and more attention will be placed on promotion. The two most important aspects of coordinating an art show would be having art and a place to hang art. So getting the word out to all of the artists and social media outlets as soon as possible is pretty key. Of course the artists will all be submitting pieces that are still drying and without proper hanging devices no matter how much time you give them. Being in a small town, one of our key pieces of local promotion was our fantastic window display that was largely directed by Jen Fletcher of REVAMP. She brought us a large collection of old TVs to decorate and it couldn’t have turned out better. Our largest problem was dealing with all of the illiterate crack heads that were upset we weren’t an “old TV store.”

Being a printmaker, I am all about selling high quantity (and quality) at an affordable price as opposed to investing in one piece and hoping it will sell. For my entry I screened a limited run of one color prints featuring one of my favorite video game characters, Donkey Kong. It was my first run of non-garment screenprints since college and I loved printing them. It is so much faster than printing linocuts! I compiled and modified some old clip art to create an imagined end screen from the original Donkey Kong. I also chose to paint up one of the prints and mounted it to some fence planks so that I could have something colorful to hang next to all of the other great work. This piece turned out fairly morbid as I chose to show Mario as a monkey exterminator who has already succeeded in ridding the world of Diddy, Dixie and Kiddy Kong from the Super Nintendo franchise and is about to drop the hammer on the big Donkey. I think it turned out pretty well and apparently a lot of the people at the reception did as well.

Make Out Session Success

Well the printmaking tutorial, which I call Monoleum (mono print + linoleum) Printing, with the craft group known as the Make Out Session was a success. Here are some of the prints that resulted from the group. We used water based inks on a variety of materials. Take a look.

Derrick & My Prints:

Derrick zombie-fisted the hell out of some old Reader’s Digest illustrations,
experimenting with acrylic paint. I printed with arrows and cogs.



Jen’s (group founder) Prints:

Jen experimented with her vast collection of craft materials to get some amazing results.



Megan’s Prints:

The Arrows & Bones art collective was the central theme in Megan’s prints (not shown).

The Return of the Returning Show!

Good news everybody! I have recently been called upon by the Central Sierra Arts Council to resurrect the exhibit of young local artists, known as the Returning Show! The collection will be hung at the newly remodeled Stage 3 Theatre in downtown Sonora, CA. Many of the artist from the previous show will be displaying new works along with some new talent not yet seen in by the art community. The show is slated to run from September 18th–October 18th so don’t miss it. The reception will most likely be on Friday, Sept 18th with more art and an after party at the Frog & Fiddle (located right across the street). Negotiations with Fantasy Metal Island are in the works for the musical entertainment. I will post any new information for this event as I get it.

Here is a glimpse at some pieces I am working on that will make their appearance at the show:


{more linoleum icons for monoprints}


{Tucker v UTL : mixed media : collaborative piece in progress}


{I… I think I just saw something in the bushes…}

In the Works

I haven’t been posting much lately, but I promise I have been working on stuff. The first project is a series of collaborative paintings with some other local artists. I crafted some art panels with scrap wood from my family’s and friends’ wood piles and gave one each to Megan Tucker of Arrows and Bones and Jordan de Herrera of Pop Gang. One artist creates a mark or rendering or object and passes it to another artist and another until the piece is retired and a new one is started. Three pieces were just started last week and I can’t wait to see what happens to them. One is currently being circulated around some friends at the Strawberry Music Festival! I plan on there being ten finished pieces when series is complete. Here are some starts:


{My start. Spray paint and Gesso on wood.}

{Jordan’s <Pop Gang> start. Acrylic on wood.}

The other project I am working on is cutting out some linoleum (actually old drafting table top) icons to use for monoprint and stamping purposes. I will be using these soon to teach some friends the printing process.


Great News Everybody!

In spite of the recent economy I have been invited to become a founding member of a new, youthful, energetic, kick ass screen printing shop with my two friends Josh Ryan and Calen Davidson. We have resolved to destroy our competition by concentrating on the artwork that goes into each piece we create, weather it be a t-shirt, sticker or poster. Most of the graphic design and illustration applied by other screen printers consist of run-of-the-mill clip art that can be selected by anyone out of a book. The results are boring, lifeless and dated images that have been over applied by the world over. We promise to create unique, original art for each and every customer because that is what the world needs, not more clip art.

Company president, Josh Ryan, is a fantastic fine artist/illustrator who has been honing his talents for over a decade. Zac Calbert, our art director, received his degree in Studio Art with an emphasis in graphic design and visual communication from California State University Long Beach in 2006. He has been hired on several occasions to create the art for multiple print shops and small businesses in the county. Both Calbert and Ryan have been dabbling in printmaking for several years. Calen Davidson majored in marketing at Chico State and has been a recreational cartoonist for well over a decade. He has the business knowledge and selling power to acquire large accounts throughout the region.

The point to all of this being that these three individuals have a passion for the art behind the trade and seek to better the appearance of their community while upholding the tradition of printmaking. Our competitors can only offer a barely acceptable solution to the small business needs of our extended community. Hopefully we will be elbow deep in business by the end of the year.

{Stay tuned for information on our SECRET WEAPON}

UTLTRN vs. Wood


Here are some new pieces I am working on. On the left is a woodcut in the works. My first concept was the black marker. I didn’t feel that it filled the page well enough so I added the banner, but I already started the relief work on the skull so I couldn’t make the banner intertwine as much as I would like. I felt that the black flower was to cartoony so I changed it to some California Poppies. I might as some text to the banner and some more flowers and plant life as I feel its needed. I will post the resulting print when the time comes. On the right is another recycled chair back piece, this one is a carving of a happy cyclops. My girlfriend, Kim, and I came up with this while discussing what to do with the piece I broke in accidently half. I think this is a much better idea than burning it. I am carving with gouges instead of chisles which makes this very time consuming, but fun.

Stay tuned.

UTLTRN v. Tuolumne

It is my goal to have a bad ass printmaking workshop.

  • A place where I can create day and night.
  • A place where I can get friends and family involved in creating.
  • A place open to the public.
  • A place to hold concerts, parties and events.
  • A place to teach and entertain.
  • A place with stickers wallpapering the bathroom.
  • A place with concrete floors, stained with ink.


  • Are you bored with the local “scene”?
  • Are you searching for a reason to stay in Tuolumne County?
  • Would you attend workshops on postering, garment printing and customization?
  • Do you want to know what today’s street artists, printmakers and fashionistas are up too?

I want to expose the local yokel to silk screen and relief printing, social propaganda, custom clothing and a sense of pride in accomplishing what is believed to be solely in the hands of industry. I feel that Tuolumne City is in need for an artistic renaissance. There are several empty buildings that are waiting for occupants. There are several creative, anxious people in town waiting for an opportunity. It is a perfect match and let me tell you no one is going to start this for us. No one in the Chamber of Commerce is looking to nurture the arts. They are going to let fail safe, business-in-a-box chain stores to the county. With the coming arrival of the Black Oak Hotel and Golf Course, Tuolumne City has the opportunity to become a really cool place. Lets kick out the meth heads and sweep up the syringes and Keystone Light cans.

Leave a comment and let me know if I should bother with this place or should I just forget about it and move on.


This is my latest linocut, Yeti. I wanted to create a simple print in the spirit of the season and rather than using the usual figures I decided to go with a cryptozoology favorite. I printed this at Lisa Smithson’s print shop in Columbia, CA. Her family and I equipped her shed for printing this summer and now that I have been laid off I have a little time to get in there. I plan on making a bunch more relief prints in the future, hopefully enough for a themed show next winter. I will keep you updated on those prints as they evolve. Watch the blog in the near future for an interview with Smithson and read about her awesome plans for introducing printmaking to Tuolumne County!


Artist Survey #8: Tim Musso

Tim was my instructor in Computer Graphics at CSULB. He is well versed in the letterform, printmaking and design. His work is saturated with nuances and details, personality and nature. Under his guidance I learned to experiment through method and to look for the art in everyday experience. If you ever get a chance to attend his classes I suggest you do. It is priceless.


(UNTITLED : wood engraving : 8″x10″ : 2007)


(UNTITLED : silkscreen : 22″x30″ : 2007)


(UNTITLED : woodcut : 4’x8′ : 2007)

Name: Tim Musso

Location: Riverside, CA

Medium(s): Printmaking & Typography

What do you consider yourself (artist/designer/other)? Artist

Where can we see your work (place/publications/url)? I’ll have some of my typographic work as well as some prints on display at the Brandstater Gallery, La Sierra University, Riverside. Nov 10-23 and Nov 30-Dec 11

When did you start gaining interest in artistic forms of expression? I’ve always enjoyed making things and working on creative projects, so after high school it only made sense to study art in college. There is something fundamental to the human experience of working with your hands to express yourself.

Who/What inspired your interest? Natural forms are my primary source of inspiration.

Where do you first remember being exposed to art? I remember being entranced by the work of the graphic artist/printmaker M.C. Escher when I was very young. The strong contrast of the woodcut line with the interesting compositions and optical illusions really set me down the artistic path.

What is your day job? Professor of Art & Design

Why do you create? I would rather create than destroy.

Is there any recurring theme in your work? Natural forms and the written mark in its many various forms are elements that have been a focal point of my work for many years.

What do you want from your work? A means of working through ideas and the satisfaction of expressing and sharing these ideas through the creative process of mark making.

What do you want viewers to take from your work? Any chance to view the art/design of someone who has dedicated their life to visual expression is always a worthwhile experience. Art expresses the human condition in a way that nothing else can and therefore it has great value. I believe that anything that can open a person’s mind or engage their imagination ultimately has a positive role in our lives whether that be music, film, literature, art, or design.

How often do you work on personal projects? Since this semester has begun, about one day a week, usually Saturdays.

How often do you work on commissions or commercial work? Rarely.

Does your art support you financially? Teaching art and design supports my more personal creative explorations.

Do you feel preoccupied with your art, do you think about it often during the day and night and do you anticipate your next session? I look forward to sitting down and carving on my woodblock most often when I am busy doing something that I don’t want to be doing. Most people rot their minds with television to unwind from the day, but I usually find peace and restoration from carving on a block either engraving or cutting a block for a woodcut print.

What do you do in your spare time besides your art? Watch films, listen to music, read about economics and history, hike and take photographs.

Which musicians are you currently interested in? Black Diamond Heavies, Michael Franti, Aggrolites, Black Francis, Pressure Drop Soundcast (podcast), Mobtown Ska Sounds (podcast).

Are there any events you are looking forward to attending? I hope I can make it to the Southern Graphics Council (a big gathering of printmakers) this spring.

How long do you generally take on a piece? At least 50 hours.

Have you jeopardized or risked the loss of a significant relationship, job, educational or career opportunity because of your art? No.

Do you work on multiple projects at once? I usually try to limit myself to one or two projects at a time.

Do you have trouble parting with your finished work? The great thing about printmaking is that you can make multiples, so I never have to part with my only copy of something that I have done.

Support or Die



This is my latest line of shirts. Over the summer I volunteered a lot of time to my local Arts Council and our Foothill Farmlands Arts Festival and I designed these shirts with our struggling arts community in mind. I designed and printed them all myself right here in ol’ Tuolumne County. They are a very limited run (especially the yellow ones) and are going fast. If you want to snatch one while they’re still available email me at with the size and color you want along with your address and I will let you know what’s available. They are $20 a piece.

Here is an image created by friend & satisfied customer April: