Internationally Award Winning Artist

 

 

 

           Pencil Drawing

Pencil Line Drawing

            silk screen print serigraph printing

The image is built in 18 layers

The Process of Creating a Hand Pulled Serigraph

The printing process for me, begins with a well-planned line drawing. It is really difficult to make changes once the layers start going down, so I take my time with this stage. The silk-screen printmaking technique I use is over 1000 years old and originated in China. Pulling the ink across the paper with a squeegee is still done the same way, by me in my studio. This printmaking technique arrived in North America around 1900, and was initially widely used for industrial purposes. In the 1930’s artists began adopting the screen printing process and renamed it ‘Serigraph Printing.’

 
Painting a Stencil
Painting a Stencil
                    
Placing the painted stencil and film on the light table
Placing the painted stencil and film on the light table

 There have, of course, been advancements in the materials used to create a serigraph. However pulling ink across paper to create edition of nearly identical prints by hand, is still very challenging. Originally stencils were hand painted directly onto the silk. My stencils are created on a sheet of clear acetate, using opaque black ink. This hand painted stencil is then burned into a stencil film on a light table. 

 
Stencil film placed in developing solution
Stencil film placed in developing solution

                  Rinsing unwanted areas from stencil

Rinsing unwanted areas from stencil

The exposed film is placed into a developing solution, and then sprayed with warm water to rinse away the unwanted areas, leaving the film with the stencil pattern on it.  

 
Adhering the stencil to the screen
Adhering the stencil to the screen

               Carding on the block out

Carding on the block out

The film is then adhered to a screen, and when the stencil is dry the backing is peeled away leaving open the areas for the ink to come through. Block out is then spread around the outside of the stencil to keep the borders of the paper clean when printing. 

 
Mixing a color
Mixing a color, you have to get the hue and intensity just right

                 Attaching the Screen to the table

Attaching the Screen to the table

Ink or paint is then carefully mixed up, the shade and intensity are important because this will affect not only the colors that are already on the print, but also the colors that are going on with subsequent stencils. This is because the image is built up in translucent layers. The screen with the stencil is then fastened securely to hinges on a table, so that it can go up and down, but always returns to the exact same position for printing. 

 
Putting the registration guides in place
Putting the registration guides in place

                  Pulling a color on the serigraph

Pulling a color on the serigraph

 One of the prints from the edition in progress, is carefully lined up under the stencil. Then registration marks are taped against that print so that every piece of paper from the edition can slide into the same spot using those registration marks. The ink is then put on the screen, and pulled across each of the prints using a squeegee, and they are hung to dry.

 
Cleaning around the printing area
Cleaning around the printing area

                   Getting ready for some heavy duty cleaning

Getting ready for some heavy duty cleaning

Then everything has to be cleaned up, (this is the least fun part). In a well ventilated area using solvents, and soap, the screen has to be cleaned and prepped for the next stencil. This whole process, beginning after you complete a stencil, and ending when you are ready to begin working on the next stencil, takes about 5 hours. Creating a single stencil, depending on the size and detail, can take anywhere from 1/2 an hour, to 15 hours or more. I do not get to see final image until I am pulling the last color.

 When the printing is completed, I put aside and destroy the prints which are flawed, and sign and number the ‘identical’ ones which become part of my edition.  The number of stencils I print in an edition varies, but is usually between 12 and 30. If a print gets smudged, or is off register, or attracts an errant dog hair, or prints imperfectly at any stage in this process, it does not make it into the edition.

              Giving everything a good soaping down


Giving everything a good soaping down

            

   

              Finishing up in the studio after printing


Finishing up in the studio after printing

 

Original Print Verses Limited Edition (Reproduction) Print

An Original Print, such as a Serigraph, is created by an artist by hand, and is a work of art. A Limited Edition (Reproduction), Print may look lovely, but it is a Photograph of a Painting, reproduced mechanically by technicians, then signed by the artist who created the painting that was photographed. The word "limited" for a reproduction print refers to the fact that there are only 500 or 5,000 prints in the edition.
All of my Serigraph Editions have 60 or less prints in total, and up to 6 Artist Proofs. The one exception is ‘I Heart the Planet,’ it is an edition of 100 prints. They are not for sale, but are being abandoned around the world in an act of Artistic Hope.
To see a video that takes you through the steps of pulling a single color, please follow the link at the bottom of the page to my YouTube Channel.