Week three of my screenprinting class at The University of the Arts was last night and I was thrilled to get some ink down. Last week I had the first separation burned and ready. Last night was printing night. Class started out by viewing and admiring a selection of posters by Seripop, the Montréal-based poster-design duo of Yannick Desranleau and Chloe Lum. I'm familiar with Seripop and while I'm always happy to look at interesting posters, I was pretty single-minded, wanting to get right to mixing ink.
I bought a pretty standard Speedball green last week, but it was way too ugly for me to use for my vampire. Nuclear pukey green is more like what I was wanting. So I found a near-empty jar of bright bright yellow Speedball fabric ink, added quite a lot of white, and then dripped in my ugly green until it was perfect. I was surprised how little of my green I needed to get the color I wanted from that yellow. But when you see the color, I suppose it's really more yellow than green.
Can I say again how good it is to be making something analog, away from the computer? It is.
Greg and his assistant Annie were busy helping the other students so I was trying to go through all the steps that we'd been shown. Of course, until I actually do it I don't remember it. So I had to be reminded to tape the edges of my screen, put some cardboard bumpers on the bottom corners of my screen, correctly line up a sheet of mylar/acetate to set up positioning on my paper, cut five strips of tape to have ready for making my registration jig, etc. Thanks to Greg and Annie.
Finally it was time to print. The plan was to get at least twenty-five prints. I decided to just pull until I ran out of ink. There were some glitches as I went along, of course. Now and then I'd lose the right ear of the vampire kid, or some ink would glop in a place I didn't want it to. In my art-life, I have a weird habit of misusing materials. I've never been very fastidious with tools. I spill ink, I break knives, etc. So the computer has been good to me as I can just get to the image-making without the clean-up and my own clumsiness ruining the process. Of course, staring at a giant monitor has its own issues. Making the race-car collages earlier this year really opened up a new world of analog art to me, and solidified my need to have a tactile experience in making stuff. That all being said, imagine my surprise that I pulled forty good prints out of fifty. In my head I started planning out my silkscreen set-up here in my studio.
So my fifty prints were done and drying on the rack. I washed out my screen and squeegee and cleaned up while the screen was drying. Originally I was hoping to get both colors down tonight but seeing as how it was 9pm already, I realized that this wasn't going to happen. I was able to recoat the screen with emulsion and burn the second image, but will have to make it over to the university on either Sunday afternoon or Tuesday before class to print the violet. Stay tuned for all that.