Today was my final scheduled day of printing and I was quite stressed mainly because I knew I had to wash, emulsion and expose a screen which is a long process again. But as I had done over the past few days I got to the print room at 9am which gave me about 7 hours of printing time (not including breaks).
I washed a screen to start with and then whilst waiting for it to dry I printed the blue boxes onto the box nets. I prepared the box nets last night and tried to mark out where the printed box should go.
For some reason these didn't print very well and I only got one print that was pretty much perfect out of the four, so hopefully when printing the other elements this one goes just as well.
I then went back and emulsioned my screen and then again when waiting for this to dry I went back to printing and got the text ready to print inside the box. As with the other screens I used the parcel tape to prevent the other exposed designs from printing and then put plenty of ink onto the screen.
I printed this onto the trugrain and this printed fine, but then when I printed onto the card I couldn't get a strong print at all, there were bits that wouldn't print at all then bits then bled as I tried to pull the ink through several times.
My first thought was that the ink was too thick and was drying in the screen, this was all I could think of as the first print onto the trugrain worked perfectly. I also knew that my ink was quite thick as I had purposely not added a lot of binder as I wanted the ink/text to be more tactile and be felt when on the paper. But when I showed Andy the black ink he said it was definitely the reason as it was very thick. So I added a lot more binder and the text then printed fine.
I lined each net up using the trugrain registration marks as I didn't want to risk using the masking tape and then some not being perfectly aligned.
After this I exposed my emulsioned screen so the front cover was then ready to print.
After taping the screen you can see I dotted the ink onto the screen, I used quite a lot of ink as I really wanted this print to go right.
I could see as I pulled the ink down that it had covered all the white areas.
You can see how the ink blends together on the squeegee.
Below you can see the print, I was really pleased that this worked first time but I didn't really like how the end letters in 'dont forget about' were mainly the orange as I felt it impacted the reading somewhat.
So I planned to print another later in the day.
The next thing I needed to print was the front of the belly bands for the postcards and stamps.
Because there wasn't a huge surface area these stuck to the screen when printing so I had to peel them off, this wasn't a huge issue but has left a slight texture on the prints. I don't feel this negatively affects the prints in anyway though.
Following this I printed another front cover design just incase I went wrong in any way when binding later, but also because I wanted a little less of the orange in the text.
The final thing to print was the logo on the front of the box. As this was the final stage I was quite nervous as if this had gone wrong I would have had to start the boxes again and I didn't have time for this as it was already about 3pm!
I was really careful when lining the nets up to ensure I was printing the logo the correct way up and in the right place!
Thankfully these prints all went smoothly so I was finished with the printing process!
It was almost surreal after spending three and half days in the print room to have finished completely but I was really relieved!
I now need to,
- Cut out the front cover and bind book
- Build up the box nets
- Stick stamps into the belly band
- Digitally print address label
- Attach pen label to a pen
- Put everything together & photograph!