Martial Arts School Owner Coaching --and Art

The Boise Baren Company

The Boise Baren Company is a project designed by Tom Callos of We make glass barens for printmaking and printmakers, whether for wood block, lino or linocut, or any form of relief printing done by hand.

A New Boise Baren Company Baren Named Meadow, For the Fanatical Printmaker

One of our new barens, made of handblown glass in beautiful Boise, Idaho, is called Meadow. The book in one of the photos is from my friend, Jordan Fisher Smith —and it’s called Nature Noir. It’s a wonderful read about Jordan’s adventures as a park ranger in the Sierra Nevada foothills. Find it here:

Find our current selection of Boise Baren’s on Etsy by following this link:

The Boise Baren Company (, a part of is a project of mine, a “micro-company” that was started explicitly for the purpose of making beautiful hand-blown glass barens, unique and one-of-a-kind things, for printmakers. I’m retired from a long career in the international martial arts community, where I taught and practiced being a physical artist --an artist who expressed himself in movement. Alongside that work I also studied art and artists --and several years ago, after suffering a spiral fracture of my right femur (with a hip replacement in it), I picked up my dusty printmaking tools and started making a daily practice of improving my art skills.

The Boise Baren Company doesn’t have to feed me, make a life-sustaining income, or help fund my retirement. The project is all about being a maker --and producing small quantities of really cool stuff. I like “limited edition,” I like “making,” and I like unique.

If you’re using a baren in your printmaking practice, be it woodblock printing, linocut, or any kind of relief printing that might require a spoon or baren to finish, then you might enjoy the Boise Baren, not that it’s essential to your work, but that it is simply a thing made in the spirit of having beautiful, well kept, inspiring tools made for people who seek to make beautiful things.

Each Boise Baren is hand-made, full of unique attributes --and individual flaws (like all of us), and comes with a “birth certificate,” marking the month it was made, its name, and weight. When shipped to you, I use a recycled or recyclable box and water soluble, environmentally friendly packing popcorn.