Screen printing using drawing fluid and filler

13 February 2016

I had successfully used Speedball screen filler during Assignment 2, but had not actually used in in conjunction with drawing fluid. This is my first experiment.

The subject was a window in an old military building at Orford Ness, Suffolk.

I find the subject matter intriguing- a window is a boundary between an ‘inside and an outside’. It functions like a gate. You can feel safe inside or feel imprissoned inside….it all depends on the circumstances. The image has a lot of potential.

In started by tracing the image, and transferring it onto the back of a printing screen with drawing fluid in the negative image, using a paintbrush.

After the fluid dried, I flooded the screen with filler. Once the filler was dry, I removed the drawing fluid by rinsing and gently scrubbing under warm water. This gave me a ready-to-use screen.

I printed on pre-laundered cotton sheeting with Selectacine print medium. Initially, I had planned to print just the immediate area around the window, but some smudges of filler on the edges of the screen made an interesting texture which looked like a rough wall. I could have decided to blank these off with some newsprint, but I rather like the effect.


This was just a sample to test the screen. Ultimately I would like to explore printing, stitching or dyeing a ‘view’ through the window. I also think the print would work better in black or dark grey (on this occasion I was just using up some medium in a colour that I had already mixed).

As a side note, when I fixed the dry image by ironing, I noticed that a frayed thread had got trapped underneath the fabric during printing. This left an interesting subtle variation in the background of the print (see below).

I have also digitally manipulated the photograph to produce a ‘cleaned’ image in the positive and negative.

I have a freind (a fellow OCA student) with a thermofax machine who is going to produce a stencil for me. I am looking forward to comparing the outcome that of with my drawing fluid and filler screen.




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