Alias Empire Screen Print

Aside from designing digital interfaces, I also enjoy getting my hands dirty with other types of design. In 2012 I created a set of screen-printed posters for Irish band Alias Empire, to announce their album launch.

The Screen Printing Process

An image was printed onto a sheet of transparent acetate. A thin layer of photo-sensitive emulsion is squeegeed on the screen and left to dry in the dark. The acetate is placed on the dry screen and covered with a pane of glass to ensure there are now shadows blurring the lines of the print. Everything is placed under a strong lamp (it’s possible to also use sunlight, but since I lived in Dublin at the time…) which will leave the impression of the design on the screen.

To remove the emulsion that has not been exposed to light, use a power wash - or if you’re doing this at home, the shower. When the screen is dry, attach it to the screen printer carousel and align it with a sheet of card that will be the template for all of your prints.

When you’re happy with the alignment, place printer ink on the screen and squeegee the ink on the screen with the paper below. After a couple of prints, the ink starts to get dry. Screen printing ink is water based, not oil based, so I found it’s handy to have a small pump spray of water close by to keep ink fluid and moving.