Less Ink, More Impression

From Clifford Burke’s Printing Poetry:

The magic secret is: Less Ink, More Impression
This was also the advice given to me verbally by Phil Gallo of the Hermetic Press after he saw some of my blotchy early printing. These four words stuck with me over the years: solid printing advice and also words to live by.

A few years ago, Boxcar Press published an article in which letterpress printers explained the advice of their mentors. Art Larson described Harold McGrath telling him the same message (in reverse) around 1979: “More Impression, Less Ink.”

I searched both of these phrases to see if they had a common origin, and Google’s index only contains five entries currently. A sad fate for such important words! Here’s another record to ensure this important message doesn’t get lost for any new letterpress printer: “Less Ink, More Impression.”