Home >> News

Do You Know the History of Screen Printing?

Apr. 03, 2020

T-shirt polyester screen printing mesh supplier introduces the history of screen printing.

Screen printing originated in China and has a history of more than 2,000 years. As early as the Qin and Han dynasties in ancient China, the valerian printing method appeared. By the Eastern Han Dynasty, valerian batik methods had become popular, and the level of printed products had also improved. During the great cause of the Sui Dynasty, people began to print with a frame stretched with a silkscreen, so that the process of printing with valence was developed into screen printing. According to historical records, the fine clothing worn in the court of the Tang Dynasty was printed in this way. In the Song Dynasty, screen printing has developed, and the original oil-based coatings were improved. Starch rubber powder was added to the dye to make it paste for screen printing, making the screen printing products more colourful.

Screen printing is a great invention in China. The American "Screen Printing" magazine commented on Chinese screen printing technology: "There is evidence to prove that the Chinese used horsehair and templates two thousand years ago. The clothing of the early Ming Dynasty proved their competitive spirit and processing technology. "The invention of screen printing has promoted the development of human material civilization in the world. Today, two thousand years later, screen printing technology has been continuously improved and has become an indispensable part of human life.

Screen printing first appeared in a recognizable form in China during the Song Dynasty. It was then adapted by other Asian countries like Japan and was further created using newer methods.

Screen printing was largely introduced to Western Europe from Asia sometime in the late 18th century but did not gain large acceptance or use in Europe until silk mesh was more available for trade from the east and a profitable outlet for the medium discovered.

Cheap Polyester Mesh Printing

 Cheap Polyester Mesh Printing

Early in the 1910s, several printers experimenting with photo-reactive chemicals used the well-known actinic light–activated cross-linking or hardening traits of potassium, sodium or ammonium chromate and dichromate chemicals with glues and gelatin compounds. Roy Beck, Charles Peter, and Edward Owens studied and experimented with chromic acid salt sensitized emulsions for photo-reactive stencils. This trio of developers would prove to revolutionize the commercial screen printing industry by introducing photo-imaged stencils to the industry, though the acceptance of this method would take many years. Commercial screen printing now uses sensitizers far safer and less toxic than bichromates. Currently, there are large selections of pre-sensitized and "user mixed" sensitized emulsion chemicals for creating photo-reactive stencils.

A group of artists who later formed the National Serigraph Society, including WPA artists Max Arthur Cohn and Anthony Velonis, coined the word Serigraphy in the 1930s to differentiate the artistic application of screen printing from the industrial use of the process."Serigraphy" is a compound word formed from Latin "sēricum" (silk) and Greek "graphein" (to write or draw).

The Printers' National Environmental Assistance Center says "Screenprinting is arguably the most versatile of all printing processes. Since rudimentary screen printing materials, such as cheap polyester mesh printing, are so affordable and readily available, it has been used frequently in underground settings and subcultures, and the non-professional look of such DIY culture screenprints have become a significant cultural aesthetic seen on movie posters, record album covers, flyers, shirts, commercial fonts in advertising, in artwork and elsewhere.