- Each coffee bag is hand screen printed and topped with a hand wax stamp at Branywine Coffee Roasters’ new headquarters in Newport
- His work starts at 4am with coffee and pencils in his Penny Hill garage, which has been converted into an art studio.
- His latest coffee illustrations focus on Delaware urban legends such as the Selbyville Swamp Monster and Cape Henlopen Corpse Light.
If you’ve ever purchased a bag of coffee from Brew HaHa!, chances are you’ve stared blankly at the bag as it draws you in to fanciful artwork that includes wizards, aliens, animals and local Delaware landmarks. .
Brew haha! Empire’s Alyssa Morquidez opened a spin-off coffee roastery to supply her own coffee shop, and put her creative, Todd Purse, at the helm.
Purse’s imagination helped bring Brandywine Coffee Roasters to life, and his new job included coming up with names for special blends and creating colorful screen-printed artwork.
The result is an instantly recognizable artwork in kitchens across the state. This is a unique way for the Salesianum School and Delaware College of Art and Design to share his unique artistic vision with the world.
Perth, whose official title is described on the roastery’s website as “Art/Creative Wizard,” shares it with his wife, Allie, and two children, Teddy, 5, and June, 19 months. I work in a small garage at my Penny Hill house. .
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Every morning at 4am, his art comes to life when his pencil flies across his sketchbook. After brewing coffee, of course.
“When Alyssa started the company, she wanted to combine her love of art, coffee and the Brandywine Valley,” Brew Haha said. President Gillian Bruce Willis. “And we gave Todd the space to create in a fun way. It’s nice to see a little pop art on the bag.”
Each bag is hand screen printed and topped with a hand wax stamp at the Roastery’s new Newport headquarters.
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These days, only about 35% of Brandywine Coffee Rosters are actually sold at Brew HaHa! The rest are sold at about 200 other cafes nationwide, including bags of strong stuff sold online and in stores. Perth said they average about two new cups of coffee each week, producing between 4,000 and 7,000 pounds of coffee a week, depending on the season.
When not working for Brandywine Coffee Roasters, he is the longtime drummer for Newark-born punk act The Headies, host of the daily short-form podcast Create Magic, and creator of Personal Folklore zine.
He sees his coffee bag art as a kind of mini concert poster for each flavor, connecting several worlds.
We recently caught up with 37-year-old Perth to find out how he got into this job, what inspired him, and the new coffee-themed podcast he launched, Weird. At a roastery called Coffee, we talked about the first episode dedicated to the spooky Delaware city…legends.
question: Did you work at Brew HaHa!? When was Brandywine Coffee Rosters launched in his 2015?
Answer: Yes, more or less the second. I had a full-time freelance job and was doing a lot of screen printing of band tour posters with friends who had gigs on a near-steady basis. My partner, now wife Allie, used to work with Alyssa at Brew Her Haha! Many years. So when I heard they were starting a coffee roastery, I pitched them the idea of letting me do the branding and screen printed bags. There are not many such bags. Most of the bags are one generic bag with different labels. When I started drinking coffee through Ally, I realized how special and different every coffee is and deserves its own bag. I thought of it like giving each coffee its own little gig poster.
Your artwork on the bag has a definitive aesthetic. You’ll know what’s right when you see it. And it’s kind of interesting to think about where art ends up. There are so many places where people can create and express themselves through art, and there are probably hundreds on kitchen counters across states and countries. I don’t know if it is. Have you ever thought about how you know your art enters people’s homes and is a big part of their intimate processes, like brewing your morning coffee?
Honestly, I have to stop thinking about it in many ways. But I can’t take it lightly either. My main goal is to insert a little whimsy into people’s lives. Whether they can look at his bag of coffee and smile when they are brewing it, or think about something a little different or more positively. , that’s kind of my overall goal. I think my general goal as an artist is to bring back some kind of wonder to the world.
I don’t think you were working outside the garage when you started? When did that shift happen? Did it happen during the pandemic, or was it set up like that before?
I’ve always worked from home, but actually during the pandemic, I started doing more production work and helping out in person. We were one of the lucky companies that were very well supported through the pandemic. So we’ve seen pretty big growth. Until then, he had a real studio on the second floor of his house where he did his creative work. Then I spent a few days at the roastery helping out with things and doing coffee tastings. When the pandemic hit, I worked from home a lot more, but what really pushed me out of the office was having my second child, June. We had a small house that we moved into the garage and semi-finished just enough to keep us warm and comfortable. I have always preferred working offsite for creative reasons. . Because I want to be a part of whatever is going on because people are distracting me.
Can you tell me which beans they used for each blend? what is the process?
I am still very much into coffee. I meet with Vic Scutari, who is in charge of coffee, every month. And when he’s profiling new coffees, I’m working with him to sample the coffees that come out. When it comes to naming and such, for single origin coffees I usually use the farm name to put it on the bag. I often think of what I feel.
Tell us how much fun you had when you came up with the name and where did the idea for the “gig poster” artwork come from?
They usually revolve around what I’m currently obsessed with, but it’s actually gotten weirder since I had kids. I think I’m going down the rabbit hole of the creepy and the supernatural, the magic and the esoteric in general. We use the term “coffee magic” a lot, and it’s a very good example of how intention and attention can play into things outside the art world when roasting coffee. Because it is nothing more than The amount of work that goes into making your coffee taste the best it can is not just science and math, there’s artistry and magic in it all. It’s our biggest season right now and we host events like the Spooky Coffee Club. This year’s theme is Delaware Urban Legends. He ships four urban legend coffees: Selbyville Swamp Monster, Cape Henlopen Corpse Light, Long Cemetery’s Catman, and Crybaby Bridge. I recorded a podcast with my friend Aaron, so coffee Scan his QR code on his bag to hear urban legend stories and brewing tips.
Brew haha! It has a sleek look and a vibe all its own, quite different from the artwork on a lot of those bags. Did Alyssa ever put up guardrails?
Luckily, she’s one of those people who really respect artists and creativity. I definitely don’t have any restrictions or anything like that. Brew haha! They have a slightly different coffee line-up than what we have posted on our website.
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