VIVA LA SCREENPRINT!!! by Judy Black PDF  | Print |  E-mail

the circle purse


Throughout the years of creating and designing one of a kind hand printed items my business partner and I knew we could start a business. We saw the opportunity in the market by observing the industry and several fashion companies. The realization came to us when we saw countless companies creating similar items that lacked originality, colour, and the personal touch of “hand printed”/ made in Canada products. At this point we saw the opportunity for our work and created Judy Black.


acid sunset


When our company launched in 2007 it was interesting to see the response of our clients because we have been told numerous times that our products stand alone in the market due to the quality, design, colour and originality of our prints. Throughout the past two years we have been faced with many decisions whether or not to outsource our printing instead of hand printing because of the costs associated with doing it by hand verses machines. We know that economically it’s less timely and expensive to produce using machines. However if we were to go this route it would present far too many limitations such as using water based ink verses plastisol ink, not to mention a charge everytime you want to change a colour!? It would also affect our methods and design features such as full coverage printing verses a 10x10 design area (offered by most printing companies), as well as cropping at the sleeves and printing over or up to the neck line of a shirt.

Choosing the “hand print” method allows us to have a stronger connection to our product by designing exactly what we want and quality control, which is important to our clients and Judy Black. It differentiates our product from the “mass production” methods that exists in the market today. By “hand printing” small runs allows us to produce only the best merchandise so we can be proud to represent a product that not only is made in Canada (by just 2 gals) but also has originality and high quality.


printing table

  My first encounter with screen-printing was in first year at OCA. As an elective I took intro to print with Marlene Honsa (then the head of Material Art and Design) and fell in love with both her and the method of printing. I then chose this as my major for the next 3 years. The infinite possibilities the process had to offer was memorizing to me. You could express so many different moods, effects, styles and colour combinations using just one image, one screen! (Almost like a slowed down, hand done version of the “paint bucket” tool) Brilliant as well, from one screen you can print on anything, and from anything you can make a screen! And I have! Printing on everything from wood, fabric, concrete walls and people, to making screens from flattened bugs, leaves directly from the garden, oiled out photocopies and tape cut-outs. With so much room for experimentation, mistakes became spontaneous innovations and the process fluid and therapeutic.

one of a kind booth
One of A Kind Show Spring 2009 photo byjl*

At the same time I’ve worked in focused, detailed, precise and planned ways, (the budgerigar) using only hand eye co-ordination to register layers. I also fell in love with “that” moment when you lift the screen and uncover the results. Enough to make you stay home on the weekends, it’s just plain FUN!


Judy B. 

judy pruse
Photos provide by Judy Blackand used with premission ecept *jl
find Judy Black Designs on line at   http://judyblack.myshopify.com/
< Prev   Next >