Simulated Process Printing

 

 

 

Simulated Process Printing is a technique we have spent a lot of time improving on this year. The process allows for printing full-color high resolution graphics, especially photo-realistic images, to dark or light tees. The look of a detailed and tone-rich design on a black background or shirt is very dramatic in person or on screen.
We use Photoshop to prepare and manipulate our images. The program is awesome at building the files necessary for outputting the film from which the screens are made. Most of our simulated process prints are 4-6 colors, although some designs are printed using 10 or more colors.

We use a white "underbase" screen as our first screen in the series. The underbase sets the foundation of the print, if the underbase is not right- nothing else is going to be. We like to have a very detailed and tonally balanced underbase white. We usually use 156 mesh and a 50 lpi halftone dot to image our white base. A 230 mesh (230 threads/ inch) is also an excellent screen to get excellent detail as well as good coverage when printing white.


Next we pick out major colors that make up the image. For the Tiger Image, naturally yellow is going to be prominent. Then we pick up a bright, slightly orange red- we picked pms 172. Then a shadow screen for dark area detail and finally a 282 blue for the purple drop shadow glow effect on the text. We print-flash-print our whites to save on a highlight white screen and also brighten-up the final image.