Instructables
Picture of Screen Print a Poster with Multiple Colors
I have become completely enamored of screen printing ever since I took the basic class at TechShop San Jose.

I've gotten pretty good at printing single color projects, but I thought I would challenge myself and learn to not only print on paper (which is slightly different than fabric) but also learn to use registration marks to print in multiple colors.

Since the silk screen stations at TechShop are set up for 4 colors, I decided to print a 4 color poster.

You will need:
4 Screens
4 Vinyl cut outs (1 of each color you want to print)
A squeegee
An ink spatula
4 colors of ink
Registration tabs
Paper
Blue painter's tape
A wooden or cardboard spacer (will explain further in a future step)

 
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Step 1:

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First step may or may not already be done for you.

TechShops come with a standard 4 screen printing station, which are usually set up for printing shirts rather than posters, so you may need to make a new printing platform.

I ordered a bracket that fits on our screening station and simply attached it to a scrap piece of plywood that is bigger than my paper.
circuitfish1 month ago

An easy way to line things up rather than using your image alone to register the screens is to hit "print trim marks" and set the thickness to the heaviest line it can print the trim mark in your vector program's print settings and then go through each screen, lining them up with a print onto a sheet of paper larger than your poster. Once that's printed, you can either tape it in place, hit it with crystal clear and let it dry on the platen, then use the printed trim marks on the sheet to register the edge of each poster ( since the trim marks should match your poster's edges. ) or, if you don't have crystal clear, you can use a straight edge to draw a line through each set of trim marks onto the platen and then put some blue tape along those lines to line up each poster on. Once you're satisfied with the registration, you can tape off the marks in the screen and just go nuts. Since it's on a 4-head and you've got your platen marked, you can just go through every colour on each poster at once and not worry about having to move things around.

Preft19861 year ago
I loved the italian portrait, thanks for sharing
lafnbear2 years ago
Excellent work! A tip to make it a little easier next time: create registration marks in the blank margins of your digital art (just draw or type a simple cross or plus sign) that you allow to output on each color separation (the separate outputs you show for each color in Step 2). How you then use those: get your first screen lined up, and print a few extra of that first screen with the reg marks showing, then tape off the reg marks and print your intended quantity. Then use some of those extras (retaining a few for each color you're printing) to set up the next color screen. As you test print the second color onto the extras of the first color, you'll be overprinting the reg marks in the second color onto the reg marks from the first color. Once they lineup "perfectly", tape off the second color's reg marks & do your full run. Repeat for each color. For a video tutorial on how to add reg marks in Photoshop, see http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tAvaeMDjnjU
MikeCicc2 years ago
This is sweet! I just took the vinyl cutting class at Tech Shop SF and wanted to make my own posters! Thanks for the inspiration.