Sunday, 2 March 2014

Trying out screen printing textures

I had seen the idea of bleaching out the dye as a way of making a pattern on fabric with a screen. I thought I would give it a try, and could perhaps use it to create texture for my assignment piece.

I sketched this pattern onto the screen, based on background patterns in the shady parts of the scaffolding.

I kept some of the lines double, and some thick, in order to find out which had the better effect.

Then, printing onto a piece of dyed (but not fixed) cotton, I used thick bleach instead of paint through the prepared screen.

The colour was bleached out very quickly. So quickly that the design spread before I could wash out the bleach.

It was easy to see that the double lines looked better and more scaffolding-like than the thicker ones.

This is what happened when I washed the bleach off immediately - it didn't work enough.

And this is the result of diluting the bleach 1:1 with textile medium to slow it down - it didn't bleach the dye out at all and all you can see is stained areas where it was.

After doing all that i thought it would be worth checking that you can in fact dye on top of bleached areas once the bleach is washed out.

You can.


I tried some other ways of altering the texture of screenprinted paint.
String underneath the screen made very little difference, but string above it gave loopy variations in the texture of the paint, but it was not very predictable because the string inevitably moved when I moved the squeegee over it.

Talc sprinkled on the paper was a good way to get a starry sky image.

Washing out the wax a bit, but not completely, gave a grainy texture in some places, which I rather liked.

Sprinkles of drying paint on the screen, interspersed with talc, was my favourite effect (bottom right), but not recommended if you want to reuse the screen!


Finally today, I made a weaving, trying to explore other ways of making the parallel lines and shadowy horizontals that appeal to me about the scaffolding.

I used translucent fabric for the weft, and twisted it for some of the rows.

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