Caña is an independent print magazine dedicated to the intersection between beer and culture; brewing and fervent creativity.
Caña is an independent print magazine dedicated to the intersection between beer and culture; brewing and fervent creativity.
Cane, reed, rod, leg, rum … the Spanish dictionary turns out a number of translations for the word caña, but it is its notable significance in Spain that concerns us here: a caña is a small glass of beer. As ‘pint’ is commonplace codeword for a beer on British shores, uttering those four letters will see some industrially-produced froth slammed down in front of you as quickly as you can say por favor. The difference being, where a pint — by definition — takes on a predictable form, the caña has a tendency to surprise; taking on a spectrum of sizes that range from scant to sufficient.
We like unpredictability, and so Caña stuck. (Plus the énye looks cool.)
Caña magazine? Unpredictability plus beer, equals an independent print magazine and cultural brand dedicated to honouring the planet’s third most popular beverage. (That’s after water and tea, folks.) All conducted from an outré standpoint. Beer: brews and breweries, people and places, stories and histories. Culture: artists and artisans, designers, illustrators and thinkers; the eccentric and the excellent. Beer Culture.
Caña is informed by the new wave of craft breweries who are pushing boundaries in taste and aesthetic, but not limited to them — instead a revelry of beer in all of its forms; an inclusive, pretension-free zone where the love of beer outweighs all. Similarly, low- and high-brow culture will collide with giddy euphoria, Caña a journal that chronicles our own fanaticism for fervent creativity whatever form it takes. Noted writers from respective genres will contribute stories that cut against the grain, challenge, and inspire.
Existentially speaking, that’s a great question. Why not? Publishing on the internet (our background) has become increasingly dull thanks to the clicks-over-quality mantra and a saturation of information (mostly banal) flowing like a leak that cannot be plugged. We, like many others, are experiencing a re-found draw towards the look and feel and smell of a physical product, something that can be consumed anywhere and at any time, passed on or shared. There is a palpable movement to disconnect, and the recent boom in indie publishing is testament to that.
Which doesn’t mean we’re jumping on a bandwagon. No.
Caña is born of an enduring infatuation with print and the magazine industry; from Neville Brody’s visual language for The Face and the peerless style of i-D and Dazed, to the incredible march led by contemporary magazines like Apartamento and Riposte, our ardour for tangible publishing is insatiable.
And beer? Equally so, to our detriment. Real ale and Belgian beer drinkers from a young (illegal) age, the craft beer revolution has not just been noted by team Caña, it has been experienced with liver-pickling authenticity. Creative exploration in brewing and branding is at an all time high. Enthused by the movement’s current juncture and the pioneers who are leading its evolution, Caña has been conceived as a natural document of a moment when beer and culture have never been closer. There has literally never been a better time for this magazine to exist.
Editorial and Creative: James Davidson
Production and Digital: John Wilson
James Davidson is the founder and editor-in-chief of online media platform We Heart — an ode to design, culture and travel (and a winner of two major honours at the esteemed Lovie Awards in 2015) — and has written for a string of digital and print publications. His gusto for publication began way back when, making lo-fi fanzines in high school, and most recently in self-publishing the critically-acclaimed book, Create GB, in 2013.
Web developer John Wilson has been tirelessly making We Heart tick behind the scenes for almost a decade, and is an infamous straight-talker. (‘I just make websites for whoever pays,’ was the expansive contribution to his own biography.) Using the rewards of ‘whoever pays’ to feed his appetite as a fanatical collector of beer and indie mags, joining his longterm collaborator into the world of Caña was a natural progression.
Existing as a concept for over two years (we really wanted to get this right), Caña’s social media presence began in earnest at the start of the year — commissioning talented young London-based designer Corin Kennington to create our logo, and beginning to build our voice along with a following of beer and culture lovers already roused by our project.
Debuting in the real world this summer, Caña launched the Beer Culture exhibition at Barcelona brewpub Garage Beer Co. in June, a distillation of our debut issue with work from Omnipollo’s Karl Grandin, Caña Issue One cover artist Jose Mendez, and creative talent like Emil Sellström; Alec Doherty of Partizan Brewing; Sipke Visser; and the designer behind Cloudwater’s SS17 labels, Mariel Osborn.
Taking the form of a bookish 160-page, 165 x 240 mm publication with beautiful eco-friendly stocks, our debut issue is not 100% complete, but in very good health — its stories and contributors (of both words and imagery) confirmed, and many of them completed. Expect in-depth profiles and interviews with designers, artists, brewers, and beer’s movers and shakers, alongside gonzo forays into the furthest recesses of beer and the culture that surrounds it. Each issue will have a dedicated section that gets under the skin of the beer scene in a city or region, and we begin with Barcelona.
Expect stories like:
- Artist and one half of Omnipollo, Karl Grandin, explaining how ‘the Devil’s Manuscript’ and 1970s wallpaper inspired his mysticism-heavy style.
- The people, places, beers, brewers and bars of Barcelona; and how a recent craft revolution has reshaped beer in the Catalan capital.
- Cloudwater’s most recent resident artist, Mariel Osborn, on her visual rebuttal of machismo in the beer industry.
- Celebrated beer writer Matthew Curtis traversing the history and now of sour beer.
- Alec Doherty talking to us about his instantly-recognisable artwork for London’s Partizan Brewing.
- Californian photographer Mathew Scott documenting the decline of the dive bar in gentrified San Francisco.
- A study of hype-beers and how collectibility is changing the face of craft beer around the world.
- Author of The Craft Beer Cookbook, Jackie Dodd, diving into the weird and wonderful ingredients brewers have challenged themselves to weave into their brews.
- Emil Sellström on bathtubs of beer, home-brewing, and his 1980s Miami Vice-soaked illustrative vibes.
- Noted art photographer Sipke Visser sharing his decadent images of London getting exceedingly drunk.
Caña Needs You
We’ve put our backs into this. Two years of talking and doing; honing a visual aesthetic and mapping out the future of a new brand; forging new contacts and building a comprehensive network. Hours and hours of research and development — counting pages, adverts, features, and article lengths of magazines we admire; analysing and studying paper stocks and printers; probing friends who are already publishing successful indie magazines; investing our own money and months of time into shaping Caña as you see it today. We are heavily invested, and we want you to be too.
The aim of this Kickstarter is simple, to allow us to complete, print, and distribute the magazine we have worked tirelessly on. Our time is invested, but we want to fairly pay talented contributors and commission incredible artists and photographers to take Issue One to 100% and beyond; we want to print it to the highest standard; and we want to ensure that Caña is not a one hit wonder.
Here’s how the funding adds up:
When we think of Caña, we no longer imagine Issue One, we’ve mapped out stories and contributors for Issue Two and are neck-deep in notes for issues three and four. We are conceiving our second exhibition, and drawing up plans for Caña as a brand beyond a magazine — we want to put everything we have into shaping the future of Beer Culture.
- Our aim is for Caña to be a triannual publication that leads the march of creativity in craft beer and beyond.
- We will commit to producing high quality journalism and not avoiding difficult subjects.
- We will celebrate the cities and regions that are taking beer to new heights, and be a go-to resource for beer-minded travellers.
- Caña will continue to curate and conceive exhibitions and cultural events.
- Always remain fearlessly independent and resolutely opposed to commercial giants and the homogenisation of beer and culture.
- Collaborate with leading creative talent in both brewing and the arts on innovative and pioneering projects.
- Release additional in-depth beer- and culture-minded city guides.
- Work with influencers in the cities we feature to develop Caña beer tours and additional offline projects that celebrate craft beer and creativity.
We've put together an exhaustive package of rewards to cover every budget. There are mammoth experiences where you can meet the Caña team and key influencers in the Barcelona beer scene; join content meetings and help shape the future of the magazine. You can be our VIP guest at the launch of Issue One, and go behind the scenes at top breweries, or indulge yourself in limited edition prints, sticker packs, and several special editions of the magazine.
Numbered editions; the first and rarest-ever copy of Issue One; a special 'dry-hopped' edition; and even the chance to be inked permanently on a member of the team ... whatever you want from us, we've got you covered. Peruse some of our highlights below, or go directly to the Rewards section on the right and choose your vice.
- 01. Limited Editions: From the elaborate 'most limited edition ever' (more details on the right) to the 200 'dry-hopped' editions (hand-numbered before being vacuum-sealed with fresh hops for an additional waft of pungent green), fans of rarities are catered for with our super limited runs.
- 02. The Caña Beer Glass: Misket Chalice beer glass (400ml/14oz) adorned with our logo.
- 03. The Tote: It's the obligatory Kickstarter reward, it simply wouldn't be right if we didn't offer you this screen-printed beauty. (Only available as part of the 'I Want It All' pledge.)
- 04. Will Harvey A3 Risograph: Edition of 50 Risograph (on Munken Lynx 170gsm) prints of Will Harvey's artwork for our Beyond Barley story, signed and numbered by the artist.
- 05. Edition of 100, Kickstarter-only sticker pack: Five stickers designed by Tokyo-based illustrator AZY. (Once these 100 sticker packs are gone, they will never be reproduced.)
- 06. Giclée Print of Jose Mendez 's Cover Illustration: Limited edition (of 50) 50 cm x 70 cm giclée print on archival art paper of Jose Mendez's cover illustration for Caña Issue One. (Signed and numbered by the artist.)
- 07. The Barcelona Experience: A real biggie—flights, hotel, meet local influencers, exclusive Caña beer tour, content meeting, all documented for a feature on our online magazine.
- 08. Caña bar Blade: A custom-etched bottle opener with Caña logo on one side, and exclusive artwork on the other.
Get in Touch
Anti-Video Creative: James Davidson
Anti-Video Soundtrack: Buck Houston
Cover and Exhibition Photography: Sergio Ävila
Risks and challenges
Extensive research; exhaustive analysis; securing relationships with contributors, collaborators, printers, manufacturers and distributors. Creating brand Caña, art directing and style-setting, writing, commissioning. Comprehensive planning and procurement for rewards; business plan; meticulous breaking down of costs and contingencies; suppliers and buyers confirmed.
We have taken the risks, we have faced the challenges.
Naturally, this is print, and setbacks may occur. We have self-published before, and can use our experience to navigate difficult waters, but with a string of external contributors, potential delays from printers, and distribution headaches, there is a chance of the schedule for Issue One slipping slightly. What there is no chance of, is this not happening. Should we achieve the funding of this Kickstarter, the magazine will be completed, it will be be printed, it will be delivered along with your rewards. That we guarantee.
We have identified a printer that rolls off some of our favourite independent magazines, and will ensure a beautifully-produced end product. Our challenges going forward are to ensure the ongoing success of Caña as a brand and as a triannual magazine, funding over our goal will all help to securing the future that we want for you.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)