Friday, April 25, 2008

Print Gocco-ing

In addition to learning calligraphy when I lived in Japan, I also loved frequenting the "crafty" sections of different stores, picking up lots of fun things to play with. At the time I was very much into rubber stamping and papercraft, so origami papers, washi papers, and rubber stamps were very high on the list of things that attracted my attention, and emptied my wallet. (oh how I regret that I was not sewing much then - and overlooked the treasure trove of fabric stores - drat!)

When I was an exchange student in 1985-86, my one host family had a Print Gocco, this wonderful contraption that allowed you to make your own silk screen image, ink it up, and print. After being exposed to it again when I was teaching there, and getting to play with it more myself, I was determined to get one. Why I never bought one in Japan I don't recall - and once I got back to the states one thing or another always postponed my search for one.

Finally in 2002 hubby and I splurged, and the Print Gocco finally was mine! A few custom printing jobs for some friends paid for the initial purchase as well my big box of inks and supplies, and so I can now use it with no guilt or overhead. Also luckily I discovered that a good cleaning of a screen (and storage in the fridge -although I am not sure that is completely needed) will preserve screens enough for them to be reused. Screens of designs I created in 2003 were used just 2 nights ago to print 200 greeting cards for a fundraiser I am doing.

I primarily print 2 color images - using ink separators to section off the ink pools and allow me to print with one screen rather than doing separate screens for separate colors. I have done that once - and it was frustrating. My "craft" is printing greeting cards - although I am looking to get or make the handle that will allow me to stamp on fabric so I can play with designing my own quilt labels without some of the fuss of the printer fabrics.

I have seen some incredible multi color overlay prints that people have done (this is just one artist you can find if you google it) - prints that really stretch the capabilities of the printer, and the imagination. That's not so much my thing but I like my Gocco for what I do with it.

Maybe it is time for me to do a turtle card?

5 comments:

Moneik said...

I absolutely love the cards you made for me and I kept wondering how you made them! That is such a cool machine. Can't wait to see what your next screen is.

Pollyanna said...

Oh my gosh this is so freaking cool!! The Japanese have a great population for some amazing crafting. I know people that only order Japanese catalogs for specific patterns and instructions. Very fun! Thanks for sharing!

cindy said...

I just ordered a PG11. I can't wait for it to get here and try it out! What is this special handle you are talking about. I thought you just needed fabric ink. I also ordered glass etching creme to use. I hope I am as happy with it as you are. And I hope that I don't hoard the screens, waiting for the perfect project.

Michele said...

I am soooo jealous. I really want one of these, but they don't carry them anywhere around here. I'm a little nervous about ordering online from someone I don't know...

Julie said...

I got my gift from you yesterday thanks so much!! I need to take a picture and put it on my blog :O)