The global market for custom t-shirt printing is valued at $3.64 billion. And t-shirts make up only a small portion of the services screen printing is utilized for.
But how does it work?
There are 6 main types of screen printing, and you can find them all here! So whether you’re looking to start a career in printing, or are an interested passerby, keep reading for a complete breakdown of the different methods.
1. Spot Color Screen Printing
Spot Color Screen Printing is one of the most common printing techniques.
The process involves using the stock color of ink and printing it through a stencil or mesh material. This produces a thick layer of ink, making it ideal for t-shirt art or printing on dark canvases, as the thick layers create vibrant colors.
2. Grayscale Printing
Grayscale Printing is the process of using reflection and absorption of white and black light to create shades of grey.
This may sound like the black-and-white printing method, but the difference is grayscale doesn’t use true black or true white. You can use this screen printing process to turn full-color images into a grayscale or one-color halftone. This is an excellent cost-effective option that produces high-quality imagery.
3. Halftone Printing
Halftone Printing is where gradients come to life. It emphasizes the use of tiny dots to create shading and works well with monochromatic and multicolor images.
This screen printing process is perfect for testing the limits of creativity as the method of using tiny dots creates an illusion-like effect. Unlike spot color, it has a softer, more gentle look that still serves radiant colors.
4. CMYK Printing
Since it only uses the colors cyan, magenta, yellow, and key, CMYK Printing is the most complex screen printing process. It involves taking full-color photos and stripping them back into the four colors above and overlaying them to complete the image.
While you can do this manually, this process really calls for an automatic printing press due to its highly technical nature.
5. Duotone Printing
Duotone printing is the method of combining two different colored halftones of the same picture to create the image. This produces a retro and artsy effect on the final product.
For example, with a dark garment or canvas, the first halftone would be black, and then the second halftone would be a warm brown. When the two colors overlap, it makes a sepia-like duotone.
6. Simulated Printing Process
The Simulated Printing Process is the combination of four-color printing with spot color printing. It uses halftones with spot color to create the image.
Halftones create the details, while spot color brings bold colors to life. It’s by far the most detailed and life-like of the screen printing services and is used for more intricate projects.
Your Guide to the Types of Screen Printing
While the types of screen printing listed here are the culmination of modern technology, the art form and techniques stem from over 1000 years of practice and expertise. From clothing designs to marketing campaigns, screen printing plays a crucial role in the creative industry and will continue to do so for years to come.
We hope you found this article helpful and have a new appreciation for the screen printing process. If you’re interested in learning more about the technology used in different industries, then head over to our blog for more information!