Screen Printing

I’m so Excited to share with you my experience in my screen printing class. This was my first time ever taking this class and overall I think I did a pretty great job with the help of my professor in the  course. The class was small, only 5 students because of the summer, however that allowed for the students to have more one-on-one with our professor. This was intense two weeks class, six hours a day, and there was phenomenal work created during that time.

I used one of the projects as an opportunity to create at T-shirt design that will represent my brand, EFA, which stands for Endless Fashion & Art.  I did not intend for this to happen but when I saw the opportunity I thought, why not? I considered the audience member when I decided on the white and gray as my two design colors. I will be putting these T-shirts in my fashion show, Art Connects Us All, for my models to wear. Here are a few pictures of the process of me making the T-shirts and the final result.

Some of the things I learned while screen printing my T-shirts was first how to transfer my images on a screen. After stretching fine-mesh cloth over a wooden frame, you spread a thin layer of photosensitive emulsion on the screen and let it dry. You then take a black image on a transparent or translucent surface, place it against the screen, and then expose the screen to light. The light causes the emulsion to harden and bind to the fabric. Where the light strikes the screen, the emulsion will bind, making a solid layer. Where the light is blocked the emulsion remains water-soluble. After exposing the screen, you spray down the screen with water, washing off the emulsion only where your image was placed; this clear area is where ink will be pressed through the screen when you print. Finally, you lay the screen on your t-shirt, spread ink on the inside of the screen, and press the ink through the screen. If you use textile ink, you can heat-set the ink after it dries, and it’ll be permanent and washable. 

You want to make sure you have all your materials, which is: a t-shirt, squeegee, silk screen fabric ink, and a small piece of cardboard (that can fit inside the shirt). During my first attempt, I started with something simple with thick lines. You will want to make sure you do your first test on a piece of paper just in case you have any errors you can fix them before you print on your T-shirts.

Stay tuned for next week block where I would tell you one of the other fantastic project we did in screen printing!

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