Screen Printing Day

Saturday I drove a couple hours to take a wonderful screen printing class taught by my friend and artist Kathy Sands.

Several months ago I had purchased a screen from Blicks. I’ve been wanting to play with it and this day I really gave it a work out.

Kathy took us through everything from mixing up our dye paste to taping our screens. For the dyes, we each chose two colors to work with. I chose turquoise and terracotta. We were encouraged to borrow colors from the other students. Then we were ready to play!

Katherine Sands demonstrating screen printing
Kathy demonstrates screen printing. Fellow student Jan Wade watches.

My table mate, Beth Brennan, works with one of Kathy’s screens.

Beth screen prints
Beth working on her masterpiece

After taking a couple pictures I put the camera away. There was just too much to do to record this fun class!

We started with designs we cut out of newspaper or freezer paper. I cut out freezer paper into swirls and squiggly lines. These designs were placed shiny side up on my fabric. I then placed the screen on top of the cut out paper. Once I was happy with my design, I added the dye paste to “well” at the top of the screen and pulled the dye over the screen. After that one pull, the design was stuck to the screen so I could make a lot more copies.

I ended up getting really interesting colors as I added more colors to the mix. In addition to my two colors, I borrowed some amethyst and indigo from Beth.

Screen printing using freezer paper
Screen printing using freezer paper

Then we painted directly on the screen. After we were happy with the design, we put clear print paste in the “well” and pulled it over the screen. The two prints below are the images I made from the direct screen painting. After the second print, the design was gone. Pretty interesting.

Painting directly on the screen
Image from painting directly on the screen

Here are a couple more using this technique.

more screen printed images

more screen printingI love how in the prints above how the fabric was crumpled up so it made interesting textures.

We also played with soy wax making designs on our screen and then printing. I dipped a potato masher, and a couple different size spools in the soy wax and pressed them into the back of my screen. When I was happy with the design, I let it dry for a few minutes and then printed with it. I really liked this technique best.

Soy wax design on screen before printing
Soy wax design

Here is another piece using different colors.

More soy wax design
More soy wax design

I’m not quite sure whether I’ll add more color to these pieces or what I’ll do with them. More than likely I will be cutting them up. What a fun day!