adventures in gocco registration…

…following up on the great experience I had in last week’s class, coupled with an awesome score I made of a bunch of obscure Gocco inks (including a whole tube of Bronze, two discontinued pearlized colors, and the full set of flourescent colors.

All the ink was inspiring; I went back to an old design I’d done for a band flyer. This was always one of my favorite designs, and I wanted to see if I could implement it on Gocco. I chose a couple of (what I hoped were) matching greens, ‘coz someone noticed that I’d never printed anything living-looking. Meh.


Here, I’ve got my art ready to go, and I’m just about to set down my registration guides (the clear sticky photo corners).


photo corners

I ultimately tried several registration approaches, as the design I made was a challenge:


My goal was to land both the house and the text in the tightly defined areas on the background. In retrospect, the design made my life way too difficult, and I’ve learned how I would change the design to make registration simpler, but at this point in the project, I was confident in my photo corners approach because of previous successes.

I only wasted the first ten or so backgrounds on the photo corner approach–the design was decidedly intolerant of even the slightest twisting, and I gave up on the “just do it the same way each time” philosophy.

Next, I tried the vellum overlay. I’ve heard about folks who use this approach, by taping it to one edge of the printer, so it’s available to place the paper under:


vellum 2

This seemed cool and a sure-fire way to work, but the lack of stability in the platform (the foam base rocks back and forth to ensure even pressure across the entire screen) and tensioning problems made this very fiddlly and difficult. I gave up on the vellum even quicker.

Eventually, I found that the only way to ensure the best registration was to take responsibility for it myself. I discovered that the background image did not go onto the paper very consistently, but the image itself was very stable, so if I ignored the outline of the paper, and focused on the background only, I could consistently register very closely:

hand registered

Another of the unfortunate effects of using the photo corners was that a small portion of the image got lost in the lower-right corner. However, that server as an effective anchor to register against:


Ultimately, I found that if I simply paid attention to the vertical line of the right hand side of the image, as well as the front (bottom) edge, and how they lined up to the pad under them, that I could nail it every time:


I ran 80 total prints; 33 of them are what I would call saleable:


3 thoughts on “adventures in gocco registration…”

  1. I really like this. Thanks for showing your process. I think that might be the one thing screen printing has over gocco, the fact that you can position your image prior to inking. Good luck 🙂

  2. I like your registration corners…. a very clever idea. I use a graph sheet underneath with two sides marked with lines and arrows into them…..these work for me even with fine registration, but your method will be great to suggest to students too. Well done and thank you for sharing with us.
    I hope to set up my web pages next year.


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