Printing on an ancient, amazing handcrafting super robot of an offset machine, I could learn a lot about how these machines actually worked and could control most of the printing process.
Luckily I have the advantage on still being in University where I can use the awesome craftshops. After 3 month of working I finished my source for the A2 calendar:
At first i wished to do a screen printing - one white layer, one black layer so i could define the color via the paper and play with textures. My professor convinced me to try out the offset-machine, because printing with the thick white color in a broad layer is a job for superman and not tiny, weakly gab!
The rough plates where etched by a professional printer and so we started on the ancient machine:
The colors where really mixed by hand on an old lithography-stone:
I planned to do the calendar in emerald/may-green and black, but there where colors like gold and neon-red and other impossible to digital-print colors, so we ran wild with them and tested some of those colors out. "We" were another student an J. B. the mastur of the offset-print-machine.
When the color had the desired shade and thickness, it got applied to the printing-cylinders.
There we could do amazing things: iris-print! That means that color is directly mixed by the printin-mashine on the cylinder and creates amazing, vibrand gradients.
AAACCITEEENTS happened as well.
For the start I was not very careful with my hands and the chemicals. Nothing burned me and nothing was too dangerous but after a while i noticed that i had the habit of running over my lips with chemecy hands... my lips burned for 2 days.
But the worse thing was the Paper-Wagon of Doom! We had two paper wagons to let the sheets dry. And whenever we came close to the left one (the one I used...) we got hit by electric current... but sometimes that strong that the hand went numb. We finally figured out, what the problem was: It had no earthing... grounding (i looked it up, but both of these words seem wrong).
Since most of my sheets where already in the wagon, i continued to use a rubber spatula to shift the papers around.
After 8 hours we printed 75 Sheets of which i selected 60 to be the official edition. 10 where brought to the Leipzig Book Fair and the other ones are now for sale and presents.
Check out some of the versions in the previous post!
Thank you for reading and hurray for offset printing!