Deconstructed screen printing
- My directions for print paste:
- In a kitchen blender that you use ONLY for your art materials mix 2 tablespoons of THICK SH with one quart of cool/coldwater. I use no other chemicals just water.
- Second best way is with a kitchen whisk.
- It takes about an hour for the print paste to “set-up”.
- Print paste will last longer than the time it will take you to use it up (over 6 months in the refrigerator). ALSO thickened dye will last a LONG time. I've used mine months later. Keep refrigerated.
- Use it to mix with powdered MX dye to create thickened dye.
- Use it “as is” to wet a constructed screen on cotton that has been pre-soaked in soda ash.
- Use it mixed with soda ash (powdered) to deconstruct a screen onto cotton* that has NOT been prepared with soda ash ahead of time.
- I will also discuss another use for print paste later which is a discovery/experiment done by Judith.
Soda Ash* – three ways
- Make a gallon of soda ash (one gallon of filtered water with one cup of soda ash). I use no other chemicals because my water is very soft (mineral free). If you have hard water you might want to add Calgon water softener per instruction on container.
- Print paste with soda ash added is 1 cup of print paste with one Tablespoon of soda ash. Don’t ever skimp on the soda ash*.
- Preparing the cloth ahead of time. Soak your fabric in a gallon of soda ash/water 5 minutes and either wring out or spin. A spinner will help you recover MUCH more of the soda ash water and helps your fabric line dry faster. DO NOT ever put soda soaked fabric in a dryer – LINE DRY. Fold when dry and keep where air circulates (not a plastic bag)
Setting up/Constructing your screens
Place one, two or three colors in the well of your screen and pull the dye over the screen. When you feel you have the screen covered well with dye do a very firm pull leaving an even but NOT THICK layer of dye on the screen. First pull with these two colors. All I had in the refrigerator was a drop of orange, a drop of red, some yellow and some dark navy. Thought I'd use these up before making more.
Allow to dry – very dry. I need to go get my spacers and these will be dry in the morning. Did I mention Maine is VERY dry? I stack them 3 X 3 and slide them under my counter which have legs.
One of the cool things that I experiemented with was to make 4 prints, then turn the screen up-side-down and print again over the four prints. If you look at the fabric with 2 prints above, that would mean I would turn the screen so that the red part of the screen was now on top and the blue on the bottom. This was my attempt to get rid of all the white.
Some of these are close-up and some are pictures of two prints. I only made four prints of each screen. Sometimes you can make more but I'd rather have mine rich in color than numerous.
On the block below you can see a double image or ghost image. This happened ( many times) because I lifted he screen after the first pull, thought the image too weak so I lowered the screen back into place but it was just enough off to give the double image or ghost look.
Here are some fabulous deconstructed screen prints with those sad white blank spots. See the difference when you fill them in? Also with all the white filled in, 4 prints can read as one long piece of fabric.