I have always wanted to try silkscreen and finally had the chance to learn about this printing method by tagging along with my friend, Stacy who wanted space and the equipment to custom silkscreen some merchandise that she is planning to sell at her upcoming show.
Surutoco, an arm of RETRO Printing JAM - a studio that does risograph and silkscreen in Osaka, is a place for everyone who is interested in silkscreen, both professionals and amateurs, to get their hands on the craft.
All you have to do is to bring yourdigitalised artwork (you can actually freehand draw on-the-spot too), and they will work on printing a heat sensitive mesh by a magical digital screen machine called the Goccopro! It is the size of a laser printer, this red monster allows us to skip the traditional silkscreen process of chemicals and going through the darkroom.
A lego-like frame is provided (see above right) and staff will be coming by to help you with step-by-step on how to go about getting your first silkscreen done.
Surutoco is so convenient that you can come empty-handed, and purchase both the ink and merchandise you want print on, from their selection! From tote bags, pouches, t-shirts to papers. But if you have a specific item that you want to print on, you're free to bring them in too.
So what will we pay for?
- Entrance Fee (1000 JPY for a day)
- Size of mesh (Price differs with a range of sizes to choose from, range of 800yen - 3000yen)
- Merchadise (if you did not bring your own)
So what did I make?
- 2 M-sized United Athle T-shirts (Available for pre-orders here)
- 5 similar Prints (A4 sized)
Location 8 mins walk from Tennozu Isle Station (click for google maps), it is not exactly the most ideal and convenient spot in metropolitan Tokyo but it's near the creative warehouse area of Terada, PIGMENT- a curated art supply store, and some fancy cafes.
At the moment, the facility is catered towards the Japanese-speaking community and has yet to be sufficient to accomodate the international visitors. But if you're fluent in the language and keen, be sure to check Surutoco out!