Silk screen printing is a method in which the creator is able to imprint and stencil on an image or design onto their chosen flat surface, whether it be wood, plastic or fabric (this is to name just a few). Your typical silk screening equipment would consist of a screen, an image (film positive is often used professionally, however on a domestic level, a cut out or drawing on transparent paper can be used), emulsion, a scoop coater, a light source, a squeegee, ink and of course, the item you are printing your image onto, you will also require a washing area to help clean away the emulsion.
This technique has been around for over 1000 years, tracing back it’s
history, the first recognisable form of our modern day screen printing is that of the Chinese, during the Song dynasty era, where they used to use hair to print images of their Buddha for religious purposes. Silk screen printing earned it’s name when the Japanese took the initial idea of using hair, and instead, used silk and created the operation that we know now as screen printing. For another kind of printing: digital printing, the printhead is important, such as Epson 9800 Printhead.
The silk screen printing technique is used for a wide variety of uses, however when most people think of it, the image of creating a custom shirt comes to mind. To be honest, they cannot be blamed for this mistake, due to the huge market in t-shirt printing that goes on inside the screen printing industry. After the Japanese had adapted the process and started using silk in the 15th and 16th centuries, it was only a matter of time before one of the western powers would end up trading silk in enough of a quantity to allow silk screen printing to really lift off in Europe and America. During the first world war (1914-1918) it saw plenty of service, creating flags and mass production of flyers and adverts to rally the millions of young men to join their country’s armed forces.