Category Archives: surface design

Expressive Textile Printing with Dawn Dupree

Last week I was back at West Dean for another module of my Foundation Diploma, I had an absolute ball screen-printing on plant based fabrics (cottons, linen etc), guided by Dawn Dupree. We had a fantastic group and everyone was happy but exhausted by the end of our magical 3 days together. These are some of the pieces I made:

These first few prints were painted onto the screen and then print paste was squeegeed through to transfer the image to the cloth, it opens up lots of opportunity for different mark making and generally produced nice bright colours but is limited in that it is essentially a mono-print technique.

These next two prints were made using the same method but the muslin (cheesecloth) was under the cotton scrim during the printing so that the excess dye was caught by the muslin. This produced a feint print on the muslin that I added to by painting dyes directly onto the cloth.

Cotton scrim

I am planning to felt these 2 pieces to make nuno felt hangings.

Cotton muslin

This little chap from Costa Rica was printed from a line drawing that I transferred to the screen using photo emulsion. I wasn’t happy with the colour intensity of the initial print so again hand painted with the dyes directly onto the cloth, I am planning to add at least one more layer of colour to add some more depth as it still looks a bit flat.

This print also used the spider-monkey screen but also used some direct dyes and paper stencils for the leaf and discharge paste with splashes of yellow pigment for the off-white background.


This print was onto some commercially dyed (blue) cotton, the fish were screen printed with discharge paste mixed with some red pigment and the ripples were discharge paste painted on with a paint brush. The white highlights are silver foil.


These last 3 pieces used a combination of the techniques, mono-printing, direct dye (printed and painted directly onto the cloth), discharge paste and pigments suspended in binder. I even  managed to use the gecko and hibiscus stencils I made in Ruth Lane’s screen-printing on felt class. Click here for more information on that class.



Now the million dollar question… what to do with all these new pieces of fabric?

Parrot Eating Sea Monster Part 2

I rearranged the green stripes on the pectoral fins and I’m much happier with the finer stripes.


Ceci requested marbles for eyes and chose the traditional cats eyes type.


Starting to make the spikes for the monster’s back.


It has been a busy weekend and the monster is almost finished, it just needs a tongue ramp and the perch to be installed on the inside once it has dried. I’m rather pleased with how the eyes on stalks have turned out, they are very comical, I will try to get a photo of the nearly finished cave tomorrow or Tuesday.

While waiting for the cave to dry I have been doing a bit more screen printing, playing with some different stamps / resists:




The larger and simple stamps worked quite well just dipping them in print paste and stamping onto the screen, but the more detailed stamps only really worked if the paste was squeegeed over them through the screen.

This is the print from the stamped (left) and squeegeed staps on a deconstructed screen.


The elastic bands made a nice deconstructed screen:


And these are the prints it gave:




I also had a play with some paper resists:



And of course printed into my sketchbook to use up the left over paste:









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