Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Another Way to Print

The local art museum had an exhibit of Andy Warhol's work early this year. All screen prints, I was surprised that I liked them so much. Like a lot of art, it's better in person than it is displayed second hand through a magazine or a web site. That's one reason I'm such a big fan of printing my photography and displaying it on the wall.

One of the local museums advertised a 6 week session on screen printing and I signed up for it. The image above is my first print that I have produced this way. A photograph I took during the Priority Health Bike race last summer that I liked, but it was somewhat underexposed and flat. I converted it to black and white, then halftoned it in Photoshop. It was then printed out on transparent film. A screen was coated with a photographic emulsion, and then exposed using the print. Then the screen was washed in water and allowed to dry. Once that was done, a bead of ink was placed on the screen and using a squeegee, forced through the screen to the paper. I was surprised how well it turned out.

A somewhat involved process, but now the screen is done, I can make multiple copies of the print whenever I like. There is also no reason I have to use black ink on white paper either.

The only downside, is that it is messy and requires a lot of water to wash the screens afterward. You really don't want the ink to dry on the screen, if it does, you throw the screen out and start over.

Definitely a process I want to explore further.

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