Katie Edwards

Production Artist

Home Sweet Hustle

Most people get home, unwind, maybe even enjoy a glass of wine to ease the stress from work–but not at our house. My partner, Tim Styles, and I run a screen-print shop called Native Screen Print Company out of our garage. A typical day for us usually means we come home from work, make something quick for dinner, then get cranking on printing. We do a lot of work with local designers and companies such as &Barr. We work so well as a team, with his knowledge of screen printing and my experience as a graphic designer, we can easily take on any work that comes our way.

Some people may see screen printing as an easy process, which isn’t always the case.

Screen printing is a process that’s been around since the 18th century and still hasn’t been perfected. There are a lot of things that need to be taken into account when printing: what screen mesh is appropriate for the job you’re doing, where is the best place to burn the graphic on the screen, how many colors are in the job. All of these are things I’ll touch on in the sections that follow with a step-by-step process for how we treat each job.

Pre-pressing Files

Once the client has determined the graphic they want to screen print, it must be converted to vector, if it hasn’t already. This is done by using Adobe programs such as Illustrator to give it a crisp edge. This is what I usually help with. We also have some clients that request a design, whether it’s a logo or a hand-lettered graphic. If it’s a multiple color print, each color needs to be separated into its own individual film so it can print separately on the finished product.

Burning the Screen

Each color (film) will be burned onto a mesh screen after it’s coated with an emulsion and exposed under lights. The light burns away the image area from the emulsion and leaves only that portion exposed on the screen. This basically forms a stencil. That is the portion that gets screen-printed on the final product.

Printing

The screen is then secured on the press to be printed. The screen is flooded with the water-based ink, and pulled with a squeegee through the exposed portion of the screen. The ink seeps through the screen onto the piece being printed. We then run the product through a highly powered dryer, where it’s cured and dried. The process is repeated for each screen and each color in the design. Each screen and each color have to be precisely lined up with the previous image printed in order for the full design to come together and look seamless.

I hope this helped explain the screen-printing process a little better. As you can see, a lot goes into it, and depending how complex the job, some days seem longer than others but I wouldn’t have it any other way. My favorite is when Tim and I get to collaborate on ideas and think “Hey! That would make a great t-shirt!” With my design abilities and Tim’s printing expertise, we have the chance to make some pretty cool stuff. Everyone has to have a side hustle, right?







Day Trips in Orlando: Trip #2 Lakeland

 

Trip #2 we decided not to stray too far from home and checked out the historical district in Lakeland. We came across a lot of antique shops. In one of the shops specifically, they had these very creepy dolls displayed in a way as if to be hidden around every corner. Lets just say we didn’t spend much of our time in there. There was incredible signage throughout the town, one of them being an old Arby’s sign shown here. It may not seem like much but there are these little gems hidden all over Florida.
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Day Trips from Orlando

So I’ve lived in Orlando basically my entire life, but I realized that even with living here for so long I really haven’t made the effort to go out and see the rest of Florida. There are all these hidden sites and small quaint towns that I would have never known about without the help of this book I came across called Day Trips from Orlando. 

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Day 1: DeLand, FL

DeLand was the first stop in the book of adventures. My first thing I thought was, “What is there to do in DeLand?” Little did I know there are so many old authentic buildings that make for great compositions. Two of my favorite stops were an old Pharmacy sign and an old movie theater in the downtown area.

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About Katie

If there’s one thing you learn about Katie, it’s that she doesn’t realize just how incredibly talented she is. (No, really. She’s, like, pretty clueless.) Still, it works out for us as we love having her talent and creativity within our walls, and on our walls. No lie — you often see Katie’s hand lettering showcased in a client piece or our own &Barr posters. As well as stellar drawing skills, Katie’s got mad computer creds that she taps for a variety of clients, like Ruth’s Chris Steak House, Rosen Hotels & Resorts and others. When not helping to make &Barr look good, Katie can be found screen printing at Native Screen Print Co. or creating new illustrations for Monster Ink Co., a small company she co-founded that incorporates her love for Halloween and classic movie monsters. Entrepreneur much? So, while she may look like she’s your typical artistic genius, you’ll soon discover she’s actually a super savvy, monster-loving artistic goddess.