The Magic of Screen Printing

Mike Perry, a artist, designer, and screen-printer who has done work for Apple, Dwell, New York Times Magazine, and Nike, has put out a new book, “Pulled: A Catalog of Screen Printing,” which explores the vivid work of 40 talented screen printers around the world. His reasons for making a book on screen printing: “It smells good. It’s messy and takes some muscle. It gets me moving and it moves me.” Also, there are some effects you just can’t achieve with digital printing.

A process invented in China in 900 AD, screen printing involves using a roller or squeegee to move ink across a woven mesh screen that includes both an ink-blocking stencil and open spaces for the ink to be pushed through to paper, fabric, or canvas. The actual designs embedded in the screens are created using a process not unlike developing a photograph in a dark room, with the design elements burnt in using a “photo emulsion” technique. When the screen is ready, each individual color is then passed through separately to the printed material. Each screen print needs to be created from scratch — they can’t be copied. 

Here are just a few artists featured in “Pulled”:

Aesthetic Apparatus (see image above): “Their limited-edition, screen printed concert posters have secretly snuck into the hearts and minds of a small, rather silent group of awkward music and design nerds.”

Steve Harrington: “Influenced by images discovered in Time-Life Encyclopedia, thrift stores, and the music of Bill Withers, his art be might be termed contextual objectivism. He views each object he creates as a tangible object that is part and parcel of a larger context.”

Andrew Holder: Holder’s work has appeared in National Geographic, GOOD, and other magazines.

Maya Hayuk: Hayuk is a muralist, painter, photographer, printmaker, and musician who lives in Brooklyn and makes album covers and art work for bands like TV on the Radio and the Beastie Boys. Her work has been exhibited in galleries and museums in the U.S. and abroad.  

Anna Giertz: Geirtz, who is based in Stockholm, has worked as an illustrator and pattern designer. Her work includes magazines, books, graphics, wallpaper, fabrics and CD covers. She recently completed a series inspired by “The Picture of Dorian Gray.”

Check out the book

Image credits: (1) Doombuddy I: Code Name: Mister Tibbets / Aesthetic Apparatus, (2) Somehow We All Seem Connected / Steven Harrington, (3) Untitled / Andrew Holder, (4)  Apocabliss / Maya Hayuk, (5) Anna Giertz


One thought on “The Magic of Screen Printing

  1. Ben Allen 12/07/2016 / 2:09 pm

    I appreciate the information on screen printing. I had no idea that screen printing was started in 900 AD in China, I thought it was something that was invented much later with a little newer technology. My wife has been interested in screen printing and trying it on her own, I will be sure to share this information with her.

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