Posts in Screen printing
Print Decisions ~ DTG & Screen Printing

Reflecting, as always, on the designs I had created last week I knew I needed to make some decisions. Namely which ones I wanted to get samples of. 

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Also, I need to think of which designs work best for specific techniques such as screen printing or direct to garment (DTG). Both are great processes and I love them equally but of course the aesthetic is the key factor.

Screen printing needs simple art work broken down into colours for each screen, which is a perfect technique for my linear drawings. Whereas DTG is like a computer print out and can capture any detail, ideal for my colour designs that I recently created. 

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To help with the decision making I wanted to have a range of designs, to broaden my collection and appeal to people’s various tastes from simple to complex and colourful. But I also wanted to have some visualisations to help me view them as garments mentally. Below is my very quick version of this - no judgement please!   

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As basic as this is, it really helps me consider how the design works, what needs changing and more importantly, does it work? 

Focusing on the garment choices I am thinking about whether I should print just t-shirts or sweatshirts or both given the seasonal changes that will happen? What colour? I am feeling drawn to black as I think it compliments the designs and is another colour way to add to the collection too. 

Another consideration is other printing techniques such as silver or gold vinyl. I would love that for the linear designs on black sweatshirts. Black and gold specifically is the perfect combination in my opinion. 

Right, so this week I need to make any drawing refinements and send the images off to the printers I met with recently and ask them for a quote. Order the garment samples and printing equipment so I can screen print myself - got to save costs where I can but also so I can do some printing, I really love this technique. It is good to get hands on and embrace the next creative stage. 

Then the fun starts...   

Solution Focused Experiments

Since being back off holiday I have been trying hard to focus on updating my website i.e. Changing the layout, I have mentioned this previously. Well it started off ok but my computer is so slow and then I managed to unlink products, so clicking through on a product took you elsewhere or the page was not available. It was so frustrating to the point of turmoil. My obsessive nature made me persist but my brain was on rapid shutdown. However being stubborn helped as I managed to sort most of it out, just a few tweaks here and there are outstanding. The main issue now is whether to publish it now or wait for the new photos? Dilemma. I will come to a decision at some point. 

In the mean time I have printed a couple more sweatshirts. Being back in the print studio was the tonic I needed and reaffirmed that I am much more practical minded rather than the sitting and staring at the computer kind. Need someone to do all of this 'stuff' for me at some point. It kills my creative thread. But at this stage of the game I need to just swallow the challenge and get over the hurdle. So balance is key. Do the not so 'fun' elements of the business first and rewards myself with the artistic outlet after. 

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One off piece, which is being prepped for my label to be sewn in. 

I went to one of my favourite bookshops to see if they had American Vogue in stock yet. A rather ambitious hope. Obviously they didn't so I bought the UK issue instead and a thought struck me. How would they compare? Aside from volumn, that is the number of pages, I am wondering if one will differ significantly in terms of their representation of women of colour. Will one be more proportionate and equal than its counterpart? Time will tell but so far the British one is looking pretty promising.  

So my hope is that I will do a limited edition piece that will be an illustration of the women of colour shown from both magazines. I have a vision in my head I just need to get drawing and see what happens.  

I am also playing about with the mistakes that happen. With screen printing you can never fully control the output but that is the beauty of it I believe. Recently I accidentally forgot to stretch the sweatshirt properly so the print was disconnected at the bottom. At first I was annoyed with myself for rushing and not prepping properly but then it allowed me to think of a solution, which was to add a boarder. Hence the one off sweatshirt above. With a small print run this is ok and can allow for individual outcomes, maybe on a larger scale not so. We will see as it might be fun to have a small subsection that has more of an individual aesthetic to it especially for people who like one of a kind pieces. 

Another mistake that has got me thinking was a misprint on an off cut piece of sweatshirt jersey. I just sat looking at it and started to think about collage. Could it be layered up or would it be better as a single on the sweatshirt? I want to use different coloured threads too to offset the visual impact. We will see what the outcome is.  

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Off centre - note to self, line up properly  

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Relayer the pieces for a different collage effect? 

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As a single centre placed image? Maybe too small? Could extend the lines like I did the painting for the exhibition? 

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Who knows at this stage. I will experiment and see what strikes a cord.  

Anyway on with creating a collage and then some drawings for a possible t-shirt print or two.