Transfer printing, strangely enough to those remembering wet sponges and faded transfers on summer skin, is a completely dry fabric printing process. This half term at Morley we are focussing on this technique, particularly on mixing and controlling our own colours.
When I tried this during the previous course, we used the stock colours, which was fun, but not subtle.
I bought 3 cheap fabrics labelled "polyester" but with different finishes to really test out the technique. First attempts were a repeat of last year's method, painting the disperse dyes on cartridge paper, letting it dry, and then transferring to the fabric in the heat press. This technique is limited by the size of the press, so most of these single samples are about A3 size. Out tutor, the very patient Marian, is keen that we explore the painterly effects of the techniques we are using. I must be getting somewhere with this, as the phrase " painterly effects" used to send me twitching in to a corner.
Getting more methodical, my dye recipes are written on the cloth. This is a horrible, shiny polyester, but is transformed by the printing process.
Next, painting leftover dyes on to paper in random patterns to see what colours develop. Then using these papers with photocopies of images. This image was an enlarged photocopy of a hand-embroidered piece I did on last year's course. Using the positive and the negative of the paper, gives a positive and negative of the image. Might be worth exploring, but this painted paper is too busy to allow the image to show through.
Next using an indulca resist ( can't find a link about that, it is a bean paste I think) on our silk screen images, printing the indulca resist on to the painted papers and then printing from that. Also trying out multiple prints from the same piece of paper, to see how many prints, of increasingly fainter quality can be made from one paper.
Beautiful transparency with this fabric, despite the rather overly vibrant orange and pink.
Lots more to come.
PS just corrected some autocomplete spelling mistakes that I didn't notice yesterday.