July '22

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G R A P H I C S - P R O. C O M 2 0 2 2 J U L Y G R A P H I C S P R O 5 7 G R A P H I C S - P R O. C O M 2 0 2 2 J U L Y G R A P H I C S P R O 5 7 CONCEPT & DESIGN Like anything, it began with a con- cept. We put together a pencil drawing for a clear idea. As you know, we always love working on black substrates to take advantage of shadow tones of color. We made one color many, which was why the white printer or base plate was so impor- tant. Once the character elements were arranged, we painted using the light and shadow values. We took the most obvi- ous contrasts and increased the densities to maintain image details. Our goal was multiple effects with lighting. We also took the values from the reference mate- rials and first deconstructed and then reconstructed the image using bright and bold colors. We controlled every- thing from the start at 300 DPI resolu- tion building in channels. Primary and secondary colors were blended to make variations. e larger elements to the col- lage required more time than the smaller ones, but all icons were done the same way. Textures were used, like Spherize, under the Distort Options in the Filter menu. We also added the Oil Paint filter and Dry Brush to smooth out some areas. e most labor-intensive character was Mando. e biggest element to boot. Since he was center stage, we needed full color range and larger elements allowed for more detail. e shadows were built of deep tones. e approach was to remove some or all the base. Using inks directly on fabric, we created shadows. Removing the base sets up darkness. e ink densities were transparent, as to not get muddy. We set the text in Illustrator and then moved it to Photoshop for effects. In the Layers palette, we used Layers Effects. e combinations of colors were used for brightness and shadow without base and even a few areas where we removed opacities of the colors themselves. We output from Illustrator after plac- ing onto our template. Halftone frequency was 65 LPI at a 22.5-degree angle to the CTS. All told, 11 screens. Embroidery for StarFest featuring Grogu. (All images courtesy Lon Winters) We generally print darker colors first fol- lowed by mid-tones and then lighter col- ors. Most coverage to least. e screens were all N272 to N380 TPI except for the white printer or base plate where we chose N205. All were 45 N/cm. Stencil thickness was at 20% on the white printer and 15% emulsion over mesh (EOM). e off-contact distance was 80/1000ths of an inch. e press was in plane from platen- to-platen to head-to-head for the quality consistent results. Upon first strike we decided to push some imagery back and bring some for- ward. We went to our separations and with the white printer channel open, we selected areas and pushed them all back 10-50%. At the end of the print order, we ran two different highlight whites and opacities to help the transitions stay smooth and get punch in the opaque white areas. We only f lashed once after the white printer. e balance of the screens ran wet on wet. We printed staff shirts and embroidered golf shirts and hats to go with the event shirts. e client grossly underestimated event sales, and we will be setting up for another run next week. GP At 21 years old, Lon Winters was the produc- tion manager for Ocean Pacific and started his 30+ year career reclaiming screens. He's the president and founder of Colorado- based Graphic Elephants, an international consulting firm and apparel decoration studio specializing in screen printing technical ad- vances, plant design, layout, troubleshooting, productivity, quality analysis, and complete apparel decorating solutions. Learn more at

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