Rachel Castle – Things To Do with Printing

by Jenny Butler
Thursday 26th April 2012

Rachel Castle + Megan Morton. Oh YES! Rachel is doing a screen printing workshop at Megan Morton’s The School on Saturday 19th of May – you will print your own design under Rachel’s instructions, and walk away with your very own piece of screen printed art! ¬†Sign up quickly as spaces are limited and after today, you’ll NEED one of those spots! – Jenny x

The canvas of Rachel’s printing table- how delightful!

Printing. Hmmmmmmm. If ever there was a love/loathe relationship it is this. When a print goes well I am euphoric. When it bleeds, bleed, bleeds and bleeds again my heart breaks. If a print manages to make its way to the website and FOR SALE it is a wondrous moment. They are heart felt and painstakingly created. They are by far my greatest challenge. No listening to music, the radio and certainly no tele during the process. Quiet and shoosh. The front door locked. I’m petrified already.

Thing to do #1

Psych myself up. Big coffee. Big massive trawl of the internet, splurge on Topshop, something at Sass&Bide and of course Gorman, few books on Amazon. And a quick listen to this…. just to get me in the right, low, concentrated state of mind. Calm is the key.

Get all the stuff together, here it all is. Paints first.

Boards second. Then I cut up the design from contact.

Next the print board…. it is long and well used. It’s basically an old door my husband covered in towels for a bit of give and then covered in canvas. I do all the printing on fabric and some of the prints on this board. Some little bits of it from throughout the years.

Final piece of equipment is my squeedgee. I have hundreds, this the best I LOVE THIS ONE! It’s so trusty, it’s so good, it’s so great.

Thing to do #2

Procrastinate. Listen to another few songs… like this one.

The Cure – Close To Me

Also ¬†–

The Pogues and Kirsty McColl – Fairytale of New York
The Smiths – There is a light that never goes out
Dragon – Rain

So addictive.

Look at Facebook for bit, do online banking, get the rabbits from the front yard into the back (this is GREAT procrastination, takes FOREVER) then it’s time for lunch. Nothing done so far.

Thing to do #3

Get going…. here in stages. Wait for each print put down to dry. Takes FOREVER. Every little single color needs to dry before the next unless it is WAY over the other side of the paper so the frame doesn’t touch it. It can take a week to do this, believe it or not, by the time it all dries and when you start at midday after a morning on the net. DO NOT TRY THIS AT HOME IN AN AFTERNOON. This is serious time lapse even though its under THURSDAY, it is about 75 Thursdays in a row.

Hours, weeeeeks, moooooooonths later.

Years, decades, finally here she is in all her imperfect agonised over glory.

And whilst I made this, I did a smaller version as well.

Thing to do #4

Clean poor sink. Look at the poor mite.

Thing to do #5

I am teaching, in my own very informal ‘I’ll show you what I know’ kind of way, a class at Megan Morton’s School, on Saturday May 19. Come along and we can make something nice and simple together. We’ll cut up a very simple pattern of your own design, contact onto our screens and acrylic paint print on paper. Fun.

Rachel x

by Jenny Butler
Thursday 26th April 2012


  • Madeleine 4 years ago

    Oh lordy Ms Rachel I’m LOVING your guest posts, yes I am! Can I just say, on such a micro scale, I feel we live parallel lives except I have guinea pigs and I conveniently procrastinate whether it’s a hutch day or a free range day (in the safety of the dodgy makeshift chickenwire fun pen) More often than not they get a good go. Lucky pigs. Then a sprinkling of of email banter, washing, fb and youtube, then maybe, just maybe I might be primed for some proper work unless the kids actually need their mum! The joys of working at home. Bliss xo

  • Barbara Fisher 4 years ago

    I love reading your guest blog Rachel, so funny and such a great insight into how it all happens.

    I am also feeling great about not being the only procrastinator around. Working from home is a minefield of distraction!

    Oh, and I love Rain by Dragon!! Will listen to this many times today now. Thanks for the extra distraction!


  • Phoebe 4 years ago

    Haha, yes, I too just had to say this post makes me feel sooo much better about my tendency to procrastinate/ get distracted – particularly via the internet – when I have so many other things I should (or at least could) be doing. Now, I should get to work, but might just have a quick look at twitter/ facebook/ pinterest first… ;)

  • rachel castle 4 years ago

    Hearing you all loud and clear. Here I am on screenprinting day and at 10.25 have done full sum of NOTHING. Lets all just listen to Mondo Rock again. Ahhhhh. RCx

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