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Riso printing at home.

During this third lockdown I thought I would challenge myself. I have tried Riso printing from home via a small Riso press based in London. I created the work in three layers and posted it off to be printed. I had previously taken part in a Riso workshop at Spike Print and became slightly enamoured with it. I think part of this is down to Riso being popular with political parties, and the NHS pre digital printing. Riso was used to mass produce leaflets and pamphlets low cost and low on environmental impact. I read that the Green Party recently went back to using Riso printing. I like that its a cross between screen printing and the photocopier. I love the bright colours and its and ability to produce multiple prints quickly. Many Riso studios offered free printing for community groups, and activist during last summers Black Lives Matter demonstrations. I feel Riso is an appropriate print method for me to explore and ties in nicely with my socially engaged theme and ideas. I did ask in the print centre if UWE had a Riso printer, I was told its in the illustration department. I would like to get in touch with the student project coordinators about accessing it. I think I would like to create a manifesto/pamphlet or zine using this method.

Planning some type ideas, trying layouts. This phrase I came up inspired by the work of child development expert Selma Frailberg.
My love for lettering and type began during childhood. I would save my pocket money for a trip to the newsagents to buy Letraset. I would scratch off the letters with a pencil to create text. I remember feelings of frustration when not all of the Letraset would come off in one piece! No longer produced, I managed to find some online. I can’t bring myself to use it, so I decided to scan it into my printer and print it out. It came in useful for my riso print idea.
Chopping up printed Letraset and playing with formation. I also scanned some shapes into my printer to use, referring back to my playground ideas.
For my riso print I needed to produce three layers. The bottom layer is plain white paper the other two are tracing paper. Only black and white in various gradients can be used. Something to do with the master head burner only recognising light to dark areas when printing. ( I seem to have become a bit of a Riso Geek!). The darker black works better on the bottom layer. This is to be printed yellow, the middle layer red and the top blue. I’ve posted it off and am awaiting the results!

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