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Silkscreening fun tonight!

So, things I learned from my silkscreening adventures:

1) start with a t-shirt I really like and want to wear even if there isn’t a design on it – I really just won’t wear a crappy t-shirt from the art supply store even if it only cost $3.99 US – putting a cat on the front doesn’t make me like it any more than I originally did

2) test run on a piece of fabric or old t-shirt is essential to find little imperfections in the glue that need to be taped

3) don’t get ink on the tape… that transfers to the t-shirt

4) I am not a one-swipe inker – it comes out too light for me, have to swipe at least twice

5) when I ink two shirts right in a row, need to swipe ink over the open screen to keep it from drying and blocking the flow of ink…

6) which then makes it impossible to see exactly where I’m placing the design on the second t-shirt because I’m looking at just a big smudge of ink on my side of the screen – gotta flip it over and mark some kind of points of reference with my fingers and flip it back and then set it down

Overall, I’m still fascinated by this silkscreening thing. Weird how different things capture different people’s interest. Thank goodness, eh? Or else we’d all be wearing only cat t-shirts!

I have been driven to create another silkscreen. Today’s is inspired by my stepfather’s idea for a t-shirt that my brother made years ago. It’s a red t-shirt that says “yellow” on it. It makes my scratch my head and chuckle. So I thought of how weird a word could I put under or over a cat? Hmmmm… “elephant”! A co-worker had a good idea for another word, so that may be coming up soon. (I’m exposing my odd sense of humor here. Are you running away screaming yet? Hee hee.) This didn’t dry as fast as I wanted, so no inking tonight.

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A closeup so you can see the dried glue and the screen.

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Here’s a link to the first video in a series about how to make a silkscreen.  This is the method I used for this and the previous silkscreen.

And the chihuahua foster dog is doing well. Look, you can’t count every single rib anymore! Can’t wait until his rescue group finds him a home. He’s a lot of work. And he is super cute and fun while he’s with us, though.

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Thanks for taking the time to read this!

So the cat y’all voted for a couple of days ago was for this T-shirt design. I am fascinated by silk screening and was so excited to do this. I found a YouTube video of how to make a silk screen with ModPodge glue and an embroidery ring. I penciled the design and painted the glue on the fabric yesterday.
And in the spirit of Noah Scalin’s suggestion to learn a skill from someone else, my brother (who used to do a lot of skateboard inspired design silk screening), helped me ink this T-shirt.
It was family affair, complete with white wine. How can you go wrong?!

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The first T-shirt was an old one, a trial run. I found a bunch of tiny places ink came through, that I taped off. And had to take a break – the ink dried on the screen and the screen needed to be washed and allowed to dry. And the ink that leaked through to the cardboard needed to dry before putting a fresh T-shirt back on it. So, after filling our bellies with dinner, we inked the second T-shirt.

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I am really happy with this. I didn’t have to deal with photo emulsion paper and exposure times. And I was afraid the title on the book would blur, but it came out very clear. I have to say I’m tempted to do more T-shirts!!

Have a great night everyone!!

So after I did Stencil Kitty, I knew I wanted to make a stencil on a T-shirt. And today was the day!  I decided I needed to make a new kitty design, so Lazy Kitty came into existence.  Mostly because that’s what my real life cats are like and I’m jealous!  I had bought some fabric paints a few weeks ago and a white T-shirt. I cut the stencil out of salad containers in our recycle bin.  And stamped the pattern first onto a practice old T-shirt…Then worked on the new T-shirt, tipping the kitty down on the left side a little more so he looked less “dead”…and then I had a t-shirt.Things I learned today:

1) This process takes a long time from start to finish.  I think it took about 4 hours or more?

2) I wish I had some black paint to make the words and the cat, then do the stars in silver glitter

3) This kitty probably would have benefited from some legs sprawling open to make him look more relaxed and less “amikufa” (Swahili for “dead,” of course. Doesn’t everybody know this?! Just kidding!).

4) There must be a way to prevent the paint from seeping out around the stencil… huh, I guess that’s one thing I did not learn today. :)

5) It would be much easier to make the stencil out of one piece of plastic, not multiple small moving ones.

Funny, today was a day when I really struggled to get an idea for a cat.  And then I really had to push myself to start.  Once I started, it rolled along well. Interesting to see how my brain works.