Little Paper Vee
Illustration & Paper Craft

blog

DIY Screen-printing fun!

I took some inspiration from Spring and my favourite flower, the Daffodil and tried my hand at a bit of DIY screen-printing at home. I got given a System 3 acrylic screen printing set a few years ago for Christmas, and it has been really fun to play around with. If you want to get one yourself there are sets avaliable for £40+ or you can get a screen online for as little as £10.

It began with me making this daffodil collage a little while back. I felt like it might make a nice print, and I scanned it in to my computer and played around with the design a little bit. 

My print was 3 colour (a bit overambitious, but why do things by halves!) After editing on photoshop, I simply used my printer to print the design on A4 paper 3 times. I then cut away the different coloured areas on each print out, to use as a stencil for each different layer.

Photo 06-03-2017, 10 56 52.jpg

As you can see, my set up was pretty basic. I have a small table with fold out sides, on which I put a sheet of card. On that sheet of card I marked out where I wanted the screen to go with tape, and added some foam-core cut offs at the sides to add some distance between the screen and the paper - so that it sprang back a bit when I used the squeegee.  I used parcel tape to tape the stencil to the screen and block out the other areas I didn't want to print.

It wasn't the best technique, and if I did it again, I'd probably use acetate as that would not wrinkle as much as thin paper.

I did the printing over two days in order to let the paint dry properly each time. As you can see I didn't have a drying rack or a whole lot of space so they ended up lining up and down my stairs. It worked pretty well!

Photo 07-03-2017, 15 47 16 (2).jpg

Out of the 15 or so prints I made to start with, probably only 2 of them are good, and a few others are ok. There were a lot of mis-registered ones, as was to be expected. I would have loved to be able to hinge my screen down, but perhaps I need to DIY myself a new Screen table for next time!

I'd totally recommend giving it a go, I'll certainly be trying it again. Next time I will probably go slightly less ambitious, with a 1 or 2 colour print to see how that turns out, but I'm pretty happy with the result!