Okay - I'll start this off by pointing out that this isn't exactly going to be a typical retro-grouchy, vintage-bikey kind of post. There won't be any pictures of lovely old bicycles, or photos taken from bike riding adventures. There won't be any grumbling about modern bike tech, or nostalgia for the beautiful simplicity of vintage bikes. But there is some connection to my usual retrogrouch interests.
My now-teen-aged Retro-kid is an art student in high school, but so far has not learned how to do silk-screen printing at school. Silk-screening is something that I did many years ago and enjoyed, and she's expressed an interest in learning, so we decided to do a project together before our summer break ends.
Some time back, readers might recall I posted about an old bike "safety" manual from the 1950s. If the children who were given these manuals learned anything from them, the main lesson would be "Don't Ride a Bike or You Will Die."
So, here's what happens. Wherever the light shines on the screen, the emulsion gets "cured" or hardens into the screen. Wherever the light is blocked by the artwork, the emulsion remains softer and can be washed out, exposing the design in the holes in the screen. When the exposure is done, we took the screen to the sink with a sprayer and an old toothbrush - and washed the screen to open up the design. At that point, the screen is like a very detailed stencil, as already mentioned, and ready for printing.
We printed off a few t-shirts for ourselves and to give to friends. It was a fun project - and now that she knows the basics, she can experiment with more complex images and designs.
Okay - so, not exactly a bike-related project but I thought folks might enjoy reading about how we spent our last days of summer break.