Screenprinting on Paper

Most people are fans of screenprinting whether they know it or not. Screenprinting is an art form known for its bold graphics and its usefulness. A close cousin of stenciling, screenprinting is easy to learn, yet hard to master. Our eight-week class provides adequate time for new printers to complete a range of projects, gradually increasing in complexity and nuance. With the ongoing support of a pro to help trouble-shoot along the way, students will be familiar with dark room exposure, mesh count, screen tension, ink consistency, and registration. In addition to developing A+ printing skills, this class will help students develop their imagery, be it hand-drawn illustration or digital files, to work best as a print. By the end of the class, students will know their way around the printshop, and be well equipped to continue printing independently at Spudnik Press Cooperative.

Relief Printmaking: Print Meets Book

Print Meets Book is a variation of our standard Relief Printmaking class. By building this class around a book project, the tactile and narrative aspects of printmaking are brought to the forefront. The flutter book, a variation of an accordion-fold book, is printed from a single sheet of large paper and allows multiple pages to be unfolded and morph into many directions and contextual avenues. By taking advantage of this format, students will gain experience planning and carving a large block, while using individual panels or pages to practice a variety of approaches to block carving. By the completion of the class, students will be comfortable with all the foundational skill of relief printmaking such as carving, inking, and printing a woodblock, as well as how to exploit positive and negative space in a block printed image.

Risography 101 (Sep 2015)

The Risograph is an automated duplicator from Japan that efficiently produces offset-like photocopies. Though not originally intended for artistic application, the machine has recently gained traction (and notoriety) in small-press culture for its distinct footprint and efficiently as well as being rather finicky.

This workshop will walk students through the fundamentals of Risograph printing for making books and fine art prints, and familiarize students with techniques to best reproduce their imagery. Students will become acquainted with the mechanics of the printer and learn basic maintenance, including how to change the master roll and a drum’s ink tube. Lastly, students will learn how to best design for the Risograph, taking into consideration ink drying time, ink density, paper options, registration, and patience. Everyone will leave with a three-color collaborative print produced throughout the workshop and authorization to continue making Risograph prints at Spudnik Press Cooperative.

Letterpress I: Wood & Metal Type

Letterpress printing uses moveable type, cast from metal or carved from wood, and a mechanical press to crisply transfer ink to paper. Since the advent of letterpress printing in the mid-15th century, printers have been enamored with the process of hand-setting lead and wood type. Today we remain enamored with this tactile process, and printers continue to find new ways to approach the art form.

Letterpress I uses a range of projects to familiarize students with the history and practice of letterpress printing and typography. Learning through doing, students will build confidence not only printing, but also understanding the vocabulary around letterpress printing. The class will begin with hand-setting linear type to print business cards, a short poem, etc. Students will practice setting printing pressure, adjusting ink, and will gain a respect for our antique presses and our collection of lead type. Students will then continue to acquire the technical skills and creative approaches to print through independent and collaborative projects.

Our 12-week format*, longer than the typical introductory class, allows students to print on both our platen presses and our Vandercoook, set lead and wood type, distribute type, color match ink, finesse pressure, practice multi-color printing, and of course master the most efficient way to clean and care for our presses.

*Because this is a long commitment, we have designed the class to allow for occasional planned absences. Students will sign up for time slots to use the presses, spending time between print sessions setting type, mixing ink, distributing type, and otherwise falling in love with the time-honored art of letterpress printing.

Printmaking Foundations: Screenprinting, Relief, Etching

For anyone who wants to be creative through printmaking, our Foundations class introduces first time printers to the wide variety of resources and equipment at Spudnik Press Cooperative. Students will experiment with three unique printmaking processes throughout the six weeks. With each printing process inducing its own aesthetic, this class offers abundant opportunities to elevate sketches and designs through print and to understand the basic concepts that bridge the many types of printmaking at our studio.

Screenprinting is a form of stencil making that is used to print fine art as well as posters, cards, t-shirts, and more. Relief prints are created by carving an image into wood or linoleum, adding ink to the surface, and transferring the inked image onto paper. Etching, also known as Intaglio [in-tal-yoh], is a family of printing techniques in which the image is incised into a metal plate. Artist can scratch into plates with needles, or can draw through a ground and etch drawings into a plate.

Together, these processes range from experimental to exacting, bold to subdued, and unpredictable to calculated and can open new possibilities for artists, writers, and folks who want to learn a new way to make art. Printmaking Foundations can act as either a general introduction to everything Spudnik has to offer, or a refresher course for artists who have previous experience.

Screenprint Your Own Swag: Stickers, Magnets & Patches

This project-based class offers the opportunity to learn the essentials of screenprinting in a single afternoon. Printing ones own swag offers the opportunity to mix the perfect color of ink, be playful with how a design is printed, make a small run of prints on a variety of materials, and join the d.i.y. movement!

What counts as swag? Perhaps you are starting a business or an Etsy store. Or your band is releasing a new album. Or you are hosting a shindig and need some party favors. Regardless of the situation, this class is geared towards anyone with a project that will benefit from custom-printed goods.

Students should bring along two to three small black and white designs. During the workshop, there will be time to edit the designs (if needed) to be best suited as a print. Screens are pre-coated with photographic emulsion, and students will each be able create their own screen and mix their own unique color of ink. Each person will leave the workshop with their own design on a variety of swag.

For some, this one-day class will be the perfect opportunity to dabble with a new craft and move on to other projects. For others, this workshop might be a gateway to a new obsession with printed ephemera!

Letterpress Your Own Coasters

When we developed this workshop, we were looking for an opportunity to have students new to letterpress printing dig in, be creative and be experimental right off the bat. A coaster is the perfect foundation for printers to play with wood type, lead type, ornaments, and our collection of antique cuts. Through layering color and image, students can make a dozen unique coasters, or settle on a favorite look to create matching sets. Spudnik Press will provide the option of beginning with white paper-based coasters or cork coasters, and students simply need to come to class ready to sift through type cases and dabble in the centuries old process of letterpress printing.

Screenprinting on Fabric (Fall 2015)

Knowing how to print on fabric opens up a slew of opportunities. Designing custom apparel, creating gifts for friends, family or Etsy, making unique yardage for an endless number of sewing projects, and manufacturing your own kickstarter rewards are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to potential projects for fabric printing!

Screenprinting uses a stencil to transfer ink onto a flat surface. The process is approachable and fun to learn. Students will learn to create and print from both hand drawn and digital images. Through weekly demonstrations, students will be exposed to ink mixing, color and pattern relationships, repeat patterns and printing with multiple colors. This class is well suited for first-time screenprinters as well as those with paper-printing experience. Student will add to their repertoire a better understanding of how different fibers and weaves affect printing, and how screen coating, exposure and wash out, printing, and ink mixing is adapted with textile printing. Keeping in mind that each student in the class will have unique ambitions, the syllabus has the option of incorporating an overview of discharge printing, basic fabric dying, hand sewing or machine sewing. As with all our multi-week classes, when students graduate from Screenprinting on Fabric, they will be encouraged to continue printing at Spudnik Press through our Open Studio or Keyholder Program.

Risography 101 (Oct 2015)

The Risograph is an automated duplicator from Japan that efficiently produces offset-like photocopies. Though not originally intended for artistic application, the machine has recently gained traction (and notoriety) in small-press culture for its distinct footprint and efficiently as well as being rather finicky.

This workshop will walk students through the fundamentals of Risograph printing for making books and fine art prints, and familiarize students with techniques to best reproduce their imagery. Students will become acquainted with the mechanics of the printer and learn basic maintenance, including how to change the master roll and a drum’s ink tube. Lastly, students will learn how to best design for the Risograph, taking into consideration ink drying time, ink density, paper options, registration, and patience. Everyone will leave with a three-color collaborative print produced throughout the workshop and authorization to continue making Risograph prints at Spudnik Press Cooperative.

Wearable Prints: Screenprint Your Own… (Oct 2015)

Convert your own drawing or design to a collection of hand-printed wearable items in this energetic and informative one-day workshop. Printing small runs of t-shirts, totebags, and the like is practical, gratifying and not to mention fun!

Arriving with a simple black and white drawing, a high-contrast photo, or art designed in Illustrator or Photoshop, students will have time on site to refine the artwork as needed to be best suited for screenprinting. Each student will get to use a screen that has been pre-coated with a photographic emulsion and mix their own custom ink color. Bring five items of your choosing to print. As long as they are fabric and flat, we will help you print on it! T-shirts are fantastic, as are tote bags, tea towels, bandanas, and thrift store jean jackets. Leave with a sample for an Etsy store, a surprise gift for a friend, or an eco-friendly alternative to plastic bags!

Screenprinting Refresher

Open to anyone with prior printing experience, this refresher workshop will assume that students already understand screenprinting, but are feeling out-of-practice or fuzzy regarding the finer points of the process. Students should have already completed a one-day workshop or full class, although it need not have been at Spudnik, or even in the recent past. We also welcome printers that would like support working through a particularly complex project or reoccurring printing issue.

Spudnik Press staff will review an assortment of skills such as: selecting the best mesh count, applying the perfect coat of photo emulsion, troubleshooting and identifying the source of exposure and printing issues, ink mixing, registration, and screen reclamation.

Students should come ready to work on a personal project. This can be either a modest print that can be completed within the week, or the beginning of larger or ongoing project. To help build confidence printing at Open Studio sessions, students are expected to return the next day (free of charge!) to continue printing and put their freshly-acquired knowledge to use. Through this workshop, students will not only brush up on old skills and become authorized to print at Spudnik, but are sure to walk away with a few new morsels of useful information regarding the art of screenprinting.

Personal Branding

How could a personal brand help distinguish your artistic practice for your audience? How can developing a unique look for your website, newsletter and business cards help advance your artistic career? Can your artistic practice be represented through a logo? Join artist and designer Craig Hansen for this opportunity to investigate the role of branding as it pertains to your own personal practice through actually developing your own personal logo.

Given the fact that artists, just like any other professional, benefit from understanding their business and being able to communicate this understanding to their audience, this class brings students through the process of writing their own design brief. From there, the class will address approaches to naming, simplifying form and selecting appropriate text and font choices. Pulling from individual and collaborative brainstorming, quick sketching exercises and historical examples of brand identity on web and in print, students will develop an iconic logo as well as how they visually communicate the core of their practice or business.

Laptops are welcome but not required. Students can design their logos digitally or with analog materials (Adobe CS will not formally be taught in this class).