Archive for the ‘screenprint’ Category



Wednesday, April 19th, 2017

Recently designed a couple of posters for some bike events that i’d like to show off. One is for a ride taking place this weekend called Lu Lacka Wyco Hundo. It takes place over three counties in Pennsylvania, Luzerne, Lackawanna, and Wyoming (“Lu Lacka Wy Co”) and is more or less 100 miles long (Hundo). I’ve ridden it the last two years and I’ll be at it again on Sunday. These posters were printed by Ralph Stollenwerk at Pinkbikeralph here in Philly, and they look so good. They’re only available for riders, and have already sold out.

The second ride takes place in the fall, up near Williamsport PA and is called Keystone Gravel. It’s about 65 miles, and was the center of my favorite weekend on bikes last year. “Chainsaw” Donnie Breon puts this one together, and got in touch with me looking for a flier. I’d originally designed these two posters with Lu Lacka in mind, but when we went with the map idea instead, I told Donnie I had a better idea. There is a “his” and a “hers” and they look good hanging on the wall next to each other. These two are for sale on Etsy, together or separately, and will be printed by me mid-summer.

Here is a link to an album of pictures I took last year at Keystone Gravel.

And lastly, here’s a picture of me just after finishing Keystone Gravel last September, taken by the mighty Abe Landes of Firespire Photography.

Wednesday, August 3rd, 2016

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This has been a long time coming.

Long time readers might recall that I took a screenprinting class at The University of the Arts way back in 2009. This class was taught by Greg Pizzoli, and got me all fired up to do a lot of this kind of thing. Class ended, Everything Goes began, the kids turned into time-sucking teenagers, I hit a creative funk, new books came along, Tinyville Town begun… and I never got around to getting this together. In the meantime, I bought a crappy old exposure unit that sat in my studio here collecting dust for a year before I gave it away to a punk band, my box of Speedball inks waited patiently on my shelf, and I kept telling myself that I’d get back to this, eventually.
At the end of last year, I invested some bucks into a nice new Ryonet exposure unit and a bunch of appropriate chemicals (screen reclaimer, ink wash, emulsion, and some other stuff). Six months later, I began to worry that this was going to sit here forever, as well.

Then, two weeks ago, my friend Michael stopped by for lunch. Michael is pretty handy and has kind of a “just get it done” attitude, so I decided to hold him hostage for the afternoon and see if he’d spend some time helping me put my printing table together. I had an enormous piece of plywood with a couple of hinges screwed down. All I needed to do, I thought, was just cut the thing down to size. We did this, but we didn’t stop there. We re-fastened the hinges with bolts rather than screws. We even decided to cover the plywood with some laminate I’d bought a couple of years ago but never got around to gluing down. In two hours, the table was done and I was inspired.

It only takes that first domino to fall, right? In the next two weeks, I built a screen-drying box, covered the closet window to make that room the dark room. I ordered some nice industrial legs for one of my tables and with my kids’ help I put that thing together. Then, earlier this week, my daughter and I coated a couple of screens with emulsion and ran step-tests with the exposure unit. Once I knew that two minutes and fifteen seconds was the magic number, I burned a screen yesterday afternoon and was beside myself when it washed out perfectly. That meant that today was printing day.

The illustration is one I made a few years ago that I always thought would be a good print. This was playing it safe, today, as it’s merely one-color on colored paper. I had a nice purple ink from the class back in 2009, and I’d ordered some Lemon Drop 100lb cover from French Paper. The image isn’t exactly child-friendly, but future prints will be, at times.

The print run is an edition of 25, ten of which I’m selling in my Etsy store. The others I’m saving, and giving a few away as gifts to some people who have inspired this stuff.

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Friday, August 12th, 2011

I’ve really been loving the work of poster artists DKNG lately. I’ve bought a couple of their posters and I love the detail they put into their designs. Today they posted a terrific video showing, in time-lapse form, the creation of a poster for a Phish show in Hollywood. See if you can keep up and figure out exactly what’s going on. If you have a decent understanding of screenprinting and know your way around Adobe Illustrator, you’ll be fine.

Sunday, April 18th, 2010

The Philadelphia Free Library Festival was this past weekend. Eric Wight and I had a little drawing show on Saturday for which I printed up this two-color poster. We didn’t sell out at the festival so I’ve got them up on Etsy now. Get one while they hot.

Mash-up of Awesomeness: the poster it is printed

Tuesday, April 13th, 2010

Eric Wight and I are doing a program at the Philadelphia Free LIbrary Festival this weekend and we’re printing a poster for the occasion. However, I’ve not been able to choose a particular color combibation. So with a few days left before I print these, I thought I’d ask some opinions. A caveat is that the nature of screen printing dictates that colors aren’t always 100% predictable, and another is that we might end up making more than one version. Just curious what y’all think.

decisions decisions

Tuesday, February 2nd, 2010

Back last year when I took my screen printing class, I printed this robot with a heart. Remember that? Well, what you might not have known was that at the same time I printed that robot, I printed another, less cardiologically-correct version especially for the seventh-best holiday of the year, Valentine’s Day! This robot has a more traditional Valentiney-style pink heart in place of that anatomical one.
Now, by now I suspect that you’re thinking what I was thinking when I printed. You’re thinking “why, that cutie-pie whom I love and adore and think warm thoughts about absolutely loves robots, and by george this print is certainly a better idea than chocolate.” And if you are thinking that, you’d be wrong. Because chocolate is actually better. But this is a close second and you should get it for him/her anyway.

So go now to the Etsy and place your order. If you order it in time you’ll get it before the 14th. I love you.

Saturday, December 26th, 2009

This is a little late. But better that than the never other, right?
Screen printing class wrapped up back on December 8. For my last project I printed a four-color race car inspired by the collages I made back last January. I’d been working on the art for this for a while and knew it was going to be a real bear of a project. The bat-boy and the robots were just sitting there in my head and were really easy to conceive and make. The race car was going to be more difficult and more complicated.
I’m just going to post a bunch of pictures here of sketches and stopped starts, and then the final print, with captions explaining what’s going on.

This is the line-drawing I made as the basis for the digital separations. It gets down the basic shape of the car. Even though I know that the final printed version will look quite different from what I'm drawing, it's for some reason important to me to have an actual finished drawing rather than merely a series of pieces that I'll put together digitally. Typically there are little details in the drawing that I would not have planned for otherwise.


I played around with channels in Photoshop, just to begin wrapping my head around four colors and how they would interact with each other. The screen print would be made with four colors, but when one color overlaps another color a new color is made. For instance, when the red overlaps the blue you get purple...


Using a pencil sketch I made earlier, I added colors hoping to get an idea of where I was going with this. Sometimes I know exactly what I want something I'm making to look like, and sometimes it's more of an adventure. When I'm working with a process or medium I'm less familiar with, adventure reigns supreme.


Using the line drawing I created a version in Photoshop that looked more suitable for printing. Few, if any, outlines, flat colors... I didn't like the way the driver in the line drawing looked so I made a new one. I knew I wanted to make this car with some kind of French theme. Each of my drivers has his or her own back-story, and I thought a French Nascar racer would have a funny one. The name of the driver on the door comes from the fact that the New Year's Eve is St Sylvestre's day in France.

This is another version of the above image. The first one I made to look a lot like the collages I made earlier in the year. This one I used a solid yellow background which I think works much better for this print. I planned to have that big voice balloon but abandoned it later

I was still having trouble getting the details of this car right the week I had to start printing it. I'd been creating all my comps in Photoshop, but wasn't happy with where a lot of it was going. I tried opening up Illustrator, which I almost never use in my normal illustration work, and began putting colors and shapes down. The big benefit here was getting the numerals and the shape of the flame decal down.

To explain the idea of separations and the print process a little more, this is the above image in Illustrator split into two. The one on the left represents the yellow and green colors, the one on the right represents the reddish-orange and the blue. You can see where the reddish-orange and the blue overlap a darker color is produced.


This is the final color comp for the print. It was from this high-resolution Photoshop file that I printed my four separations on transparent film using my ink-jet printer, then used those to burn the screens.


This is the print after two colors are down.


Race Car screenprint
The final cut print.
Race Car screenprint detail
Race Car screenprint detail
Race Car screenprint detail

I’m selling the print on Etsy for $30.

Since the class ended, I’ve built a table-top with clamps and taken delivery on a bunch of other pieces of equipment necessary for printing in my own studio. I plan to print up cards and posters, for starters. That being said, if you’ve got something like a band or a festival or a show of some kind and you want a poster to promote it, get in touch. Here are some pictures of the studio and the holiday cards I printed therein.
screenprinting in the studio
screenprinting in the studio
fa la la

Tuesday, November 10th, 2009

robot heart screenprint

This last weekend I finished my second poster print for the screenprinting class I’m taking at The University of the Arts here in Philadelphia. The plan was to do a complicated print similar to my race car collages I made earlier in the year. However, Tuesday rolled around and I wasn’t going to have it ready. So, as one does when one is unprepared, one makes a robot.
This design is one I made a year ago when I was first thinking about getting posters made. The heart comes from an old anatomy book my sister found somewhere in Arkansas.

The first color to go down was the light blue. The orange was next. A week or so later I printed the red line-art of the heart, and then last was the real warm grey part of the robot. You can kind of see where the grey overlaps the blue and makes it a darker, cooler grey.

I’m selling these things on Etsy. I haven’t counted the editions yet, but I suspect there are fifteen or so good prints. If you want it, go get it!

Wednesday, October 28th, 2009

I’ve put the Boo! Vampire screenprint on my Etsy store for sale for a measly $25, with a complimentary mailing tube. Go get it!
Boo Vampire poster on Etsy

Wednesday, October 21st, 2009

Last night was week four of my screenprinting class at The University of the Arts. Last week I printed the first color of my two-color vampire print and got as far as burning the second stencil into my screen and readying it for printing the second color. I got fifty prints pulled, of which ten were screwed-up in various and delightful ways. What that means is that I have ten “waste” prints in which to make sure my second ink is the right color and consistency, and my registration is good.
On Sunday, Sacha and I spent a few hours at UArts putting down the second color. I mixed my purple from a pre-existing tub of bright pink, but realized a few prints in that this was possibly a mistake, as the pink apparently was mixed with a lot of white which made the color much more opaque than I wanted.
screenprint class week 3.5: preparing ink
screenprint class week 3.5: making purple
The original idea was to have the purple overprint the green in some areas, and the mix of the two colors would create a very dark brownish color, contrasting with the pure purple where it does not overprint the green. However, since the purple was so opaque, the green did not show up much though it. This looked ok but rendered some of the details, like the buttons and the little middle area of the vampire’s mouth, pretty-much invisible.
After a couple of prints like this and a little cursing, I dumped a big glob of transparent extender into my tub of purple. This is supposed to do pretty much what it says. It makes the ink more transparent while not really changing the color. I scraped the old ink off the screen and replaced it with this new, thinner ink. Problem solved.
I pulled the remaining prints as Sacha racked them and took pictures. Here are several from the afternoon.
screenprint class week 3.5: ready to print
screenprint class week 3.5: glop
screenprint class week 3.5: printing
screenprint class week 3.5: boo
screenprint class week 3.5: pulling a print
screenprint class week 3.5: the posters

Out of fifty prints, thirty-six are perfectly acceptable.
screenprint class week 4: the finished print

The other fourteen are in various and often-humorous errors.
screenprint class week 4: interesting mistake

We looked at the results tonight in class with the critical eye of printer/designer JP Flexner as a guest. JP showed his posters and pictures of his basement studio.
Unlike my letterpress class two years ago that convinced me that I really wasn’t interested in letterpress, I’m pretty giddy about screenprinting after my first poster. I have a long list of prints of varying degrees of complexity and difficulty that I want to make. Next week we’ll begin poster no.2. I’m thinking of doing a variation of the race car collages I made earlier this year. I’ll post more about this later.
Here’s a link more photos that Sacha took.

And here’s the entire set of photos from my Flickr.