Been lurking here a bit, don't have a lot of experience, but am venturing to try my first process thread, so please be gentle...
I'm doing a print based on this photo I took last March in Ocean Beach:
It's going to be a 3-color print: orange/yellow/orange split fountain base, a heavily transparented purple for the sky, and then the trees will be black (duh...).
Up until now, everything I've done has been kind of small: this print's going to be 12x18, so I got bigger screens at mesh count of 250.
Unfortunately, the bigger screens won't fit into the exposure unit I'm using, so I'm using this as an excuse to go with indirect emulsion. It's considerably more fiddly and process-intensive, but the detail is supposed to be better than direct.
For those who don't know the process of using indirect emulsion, it goes as follows, starting with normal film positives:
- Cut out a piece of the emulsion film (I'm using Ulano Blue-Poly-2) from the roll a little bit bigger than your film positive (working in a light-safe room)
- Expose the emulsion according to directions (for this setup, 1000 watts, 20 inches, 10 minutes)
Here's two of my colors being exposed at the same time:
- Soak the exposed emulsion in a developer bath for ~2 minutes (I tend to run a little long on this, waiting for the "milky film" to totally detach from the emulsion)
- GENTLY wash the developed emulsion with very hot water (I wash with even strokes of a wide, fine mist, until I stop seeing blue in the water)
- Lay the washed emulsion down face-up on a flat surface, and lay the screen down print-side-up on top of it (taking care to lay the screen down as flat as possible so as to not have it drag across any of the soft, wet emulsion)
- Lay newsprint down on the inside of the screen, and, with gentle pressure of a folded rag, soak as much of the water out of the emulsion as possible (again, taking care to not mash or squeeze the emulsion out of shape in the screen)
Once this is done, the screens are set aside to dry:
Once the screens have dried, the clear polyfilm backing the emulsion will peel away, leaving the stencil dried in the screen. Then I'll fill in the rest of the screen with water block, again set it aside to dry, and then we'll be ready to rock with the printing!
I'll add more as we get there...