Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Thermofax at last!

A few months ago I purchased a thermal imaging machine.  I have only just found the time to play with it and can see it will become a mainstay in my work.
For those of you who don't know what a thermofax is, it is basically a machine that applies heat to a specially prepared screen and burns am image into it.  The screens thus made, can be used to create prints by pushing paint through onto a surface such as paper, but also fabric.
I have only played with paper for this post, but I will be using the technique with fabric for sure.
This was the first screen I made (correction:  the second, because the first one didn't work as I put the screen into the machine upside down!)  It is of a leaf design from my sketchbook.  Of course, you can't see the design as the screen is so thin and transparent.
This is my first print from this screen.  As you can see, I had a few problems.  I was too tentative to start with and too heavy handed at the end, near the tip of the leaf.  Ah well, perhaps it is a leaf on an ancient building!
As you can see in this second one, I did get the hang of it.
I made just a few more screens...
And tested them out...
but of course some of them had their problems.  The top one here (sorry about the angle)  shows what happens when you don't have enough paint on your squeegee.  I ran out of paint before the bottom of the angel and the bottom print shows what can happen when you push too hard over dark areas,  The wing shadow has oozed!
This print shows what happens when you have a very large screen.  It was impossible to keep it flat with one hand while you squeegee the paint with the other, so the paint got under the screen.  I think I have a solution for this one, though.
I think this is a great way to re use my own artwork in my sketchbooks and in my textile work and I think I am going to enjoy perfecting it.

Happy creating!