4 Screen Printing Tips

4 Screen Printing Tips

As I have said before I am a self taught screen printer so I am in no way claiming to be a professional.  Although I am getting better and better all the time but a long the way I have hit a few snags.  So weather you have been trained by professionals or you taught yourself like I did I hope these tips will come in handy.

  1.  Make sure that your artwork is dark enough.  There is nothing worse than thinking Ok I’m ready to transfer my artwork to my screen.  After you have exposed the screen and you try to wash it out nothing happens.  I have been there.  My tip to you if you are using a regular printer and regular ink, like I do,  is to run it though the printer at least twice.  I kid you not I have run some of my stuff through the printer 3 times just to be sure I don’t mess up a screen especially if I only have a few clean screens and no time to clean more.  I usually hold my transparency up to the light and check how much I can see through it.
  2. Get someone to do your screens for you.  If you live in or near a big city I am sure that you can get a local shop to burn a screen for you.  Of course for a fee or maybe you can make a deal with them that if they will burn screens for you, you will do some designing for them.  In my area we have an art supply store that sells supplies and they will also burn screens for their customers.
  3. Make sure not to leave tape on your screens.  I am not sure about you but when I first started screen printing I took over my husbands tool shed.   It was not air conditioned and we live in south Texas.  Needless to say the longer I left the tape on the screen harder it was to get the sticky stuff off and out of the actual screen.  Now I have an air conditioned shop and try to make sure to clean my screens on a regular basis. (yeah right)  😉
  4. DON’T USE PAINT PENS ON YOUR SCREENS!!  I know some of you are saying what the @#$%.  I actually did it.  I figured paint was paint right??  Was I ever wrong.  I was trying to find a fast way to block the pin holes that you get when you expose your screens and I didn’t, at the time, have a block out pen.  It worked by the way but when I washed my screens out the paint didn’t come out.  I had to get a few of my screens redone and I think I still have some that have spots that are still blocked with paint from a paint pen.

Those are just a few problems that I have run into.  Stay tuned to my blog and I will share or tips and tutorial to help you out.  Also if you prefer please leave a comment and I will try to respond as soon as I can.  Thanks again for taking the time to read my blog.

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