So last week we explained how artwork is prepared.
This week we will have closer look at how the screens are made.
Once the separations, we tend to call them positives, are ready ( see last week ) we can start to make the actual screens. The positives are clear acetates with the print areas in opaque black.
The first job is to make sure you use the right meshes for the inks/design. The finer the dots,the finer the mesh. We usually use 90-140T ( 90-140 threads per cm ) mesh for tonal jobs with 54-77T for the base. Metallic inks and Glitters need much coarser meshes to allow metal flakes in the ink to flow through.
The next stage is for every positive to be exposed onto screen by placing the positive onto the screen which has previously been coated with a light sensitive emulsion. The screen is then exposed to a UV light for a set amount of time which hardens the emulsion everywhere except where there is the black of the positive . The screens are then washed with water until the image on the positive appears clear on the screen i.e you can see directly through the mesh, this is where the ink will eventually print. After drying we patch the screen with more emulsion to make sure that all the very tiny dots/errors are covered so they do not appear on the shirt .
The screen is now ready for printing!
Everybody @ Fresh Air says Hi!