It’s Friday! Today I made this editioned screenprint using a gradient background with two colors and grunge effect text with talc powder/body powder. The paper is Utrecht American Masters 90lb printmaking paper that has a slight cream tone and holds the ink very well. If I were a goat I’d eat it, it’s nice.
So what is “Quiet Explosion“? Well, I’m referring to those moments when you encounter something so beautiful that your eyes widen, your heart hurts, you hold your breath and there seems to be an explosion in your brain and you think pieces of your skull must be scattered all over the place. All this happens in absolute silence in a split second, yet you are a different person now. Prepare to accept. It’s hard to accept, but you’re different now.
It could be a blooming flower on the road side, it could be realization of some kind of knowledge, it could be a mysterious stranger who passes you by on the street. It could be anything, anything that blows your mind yes yes yes.
Anyhow, here’s the total steps break down of how I screen printed this.
1) Sketch: I rolled out of bed and sketched out my idea on my sketch book.
2) Design: I did my design in Illustrator, testing out fonts and making the shape of the explosion. As you can see the explosion is made of several circles and many long triangles.
3) Make contact paper stencil for 1st layer: I printed the design flipped, then use it as a guide to cut out the contact paper stencil to affix on the screen.
4) Mix and print gradient colored ink: As you can see from the design above, I wanted to have a gradient effect on my background from red to orange/yellow. Once I have my orange color mixed, I put the two color together side by side on the screen. This is how you make a gradient shape. At first it will appear to be two clear cut colors, but after a couple of pulls they get mixed better and became a nice gradient.
5) Make text layer stencil: while the bottom layer is drying, I went ahead and made my text layer stencil on the contact paper.
6) Grunge effect with talc/body powder: To create the distressed, grunge effect on the text, I used talc powder, also known as talcum powder, which is basically body powder which you can buy from Walgreens. I have no idea why someone would want to put this stuff on their body. What the powder does is that after you sprinkle some on the screen, the powder goes into the surface of the screen and clogs the pores of the screen, creating stencils of those shapes. Now maybe that’s why people put on this stuff because they want to clog their pores!?
6) Print text layer and viola!
Done done!! It too me all day and fortunately I had turntable.fm with DJs spinning sick dance tracks to tie me over. Ate a bowl of rice noodles and 2 sweet potatoes. You know how we roll :)