Take a Look Behind the Scenes
Screen printing, the Studio, and what-not
Series Printing with Silk Screens
Screen printing is the process of applying an ink-based media through a stencil made on a tensioned silk screen.
I had originally learned some of the techniques for silk screen print back in the mid 1980’s while at school. The technique that i’ve been exploring recently is a to do with creating separations in photoshop, turning these into registered individual images, and then exposing them onto silk screen frames using a deadicated photo-emulsion. The layers are built up using these positive image impressions, through which the ink-medium can be applied with a large rubber spatuler.
It’s been an exciting year of rediscovery, and has opened up a whole new lease of life for my studio. I had been longing to get back to actual mark making, after working on videos last year, and to step towards a slower, and more authentic process as an artist.
About the studio
It’s a bit of a juggle, really, as my studio here in the Grange is quite small. Indeed, for one thing to have space, everything else seems to need to be reorganised and suffled around. To say “there’s not enough room to swing a cat” is an understatement. Still, i work with what IS, while ruminating on the hows, whys, and when of creating a bigger, more suitable space.
On the one hand it’s small. But on the other, there’s a level of solitude and general peace and quiet that is hard to rival.
I thoroughly enjoying getting into screen printing. It has a lot of different aspects to be mindfull of, and a certain level of technicality with i find really engages my somewhat OCD tendencies. I’m drwan to the precision of the work, from the beings in photoshop, to the final stages of applying the inks… it’s very much about concentration and presence.
To start with, the image files have to be very consistent, and thought has to go into the film-positive dimensions, and the eventual registration of each image to its proceeding layer.
Once this is done, the acetate transparencies are exposed using a powerful halogen lamp onto the photo-emulsion covering the screens. Once the required exposure time is reached, the screen has to be wash out immediately in order to remove thenon-exposed emulsion, thus revealing the positive image for print.
After this, the paper stock has to be selected, and the initial/first screen has to be lined up for the centre of the paper.
Once your ready ink medium can then be applied using the squeegie splatular in a drawing motion across the screen, leaving an impression on the paper, or material below.
There is a huge resource of video information in youtube, and also various very in-depth book available for using this technique. Other than that, I reckon, like with most things, it all down to practicing, and playing with the potential.
Coming back to the Studio
Revisiting a former self
For a long time I didn’t have a deadicated place for making art. Rather, I’d immerse myself in the digital world, working with Photoshop and After Effects; building wee animations for my video show, or doing some layout editing in InDesign for friends. Art definitely wasn’t my day-job for most of 10 years.
But at some point, the hole in my life which was filled by making art became really obvisous, and something had to change.
It’s taken a while to get used to it, but more and more i spend my days printing, or paint; generally coming up with new ideas and inspriations.
It’ll do for now, but i am aware that i’ve basically squatted my daugthers room since she’s not really up for coming to be on the mountain at the moment.
Calendar Project 2022
There’s a 2022 Wall Calendar on the way, drawn from some of the more recent artwork.
A4 in format, this gift will delight your friends, and allow you to really enjoy the prints in a very practical and useful way
At the moment it’s only available through my Etsy shop, retailing at €22.79 + p&p