Screen Printing in the 21st Century

If screen printing sounds like a foreign concept to you, don’t worry, it’s not as complicated as it may sound.  In fact, you probably already own an article of clothing with a screen printed image and may not realize it! Screen printing is a popular form of art that has been around since 960 AD, during the Song Dynasty. Following the success screen printing had in China, other Asian countries like Japan adopted the technique. In the 1960s, screen printing rose to prominence again after famous artist Andy Warhol began creating art using screen printing. One of his most famous pieces, The Marilyn Diptych, was created using screen printing. After that, Warhol continued to use the screen printing technique for many of his other works, and his pop art style has lived on to this day.

Screen printing is done by placing ink on top of a mesh-covered frame or screen and squeegeeing the into onto a substrate until a sharp image appears. Another method of screen printing is stenciling, which is done by using stencils, mesh screens, and a light source. The technology behind screen printing has advanced tremendously since its early beginnings in China and has become an important staple of modern technology. Without screen printing, we would not have cell phones, flat screen televisions, lithium batteries, or circuit boards. Glucose sensors for people with diabetes would also not be possible without screen printing so you can see how important of a place it has in our society.

Thanks to modern screen printing software, screen printing is now easier than ever. Individuals are now able to purchase at-home screen printing software and can learn how to use it on their own, rather than having to pay a professional to do it. For those who feel more comfortable going to a professional, there are tons of screen printing shops across the country, with more popping up every day! More and more artists are beginning to see the benefits of screen printing, and the demand is at an all-time high due to the beautiful and crisp quality that screen printing provides. Many freelance artists and craft-makers are even opening online stores in order to sell their screen printed goods and reach a wide audience.

Screen printing is an important art form that has evolved from its humble beginnings and has become a staple of modern art and technology. The demand for screen-printed pieces is at an all-time high, and chances are you probably own a few screen printed items yourself!

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