Sunday, February 19, 2012

Raw Chicken, Corn Bread, and Hinges

Not necessarily in that order though.

I made corn bread tonight. It was good but my pan was too small and the bread was too thick. It didn't cook right. Kind of a failure. Still eatable and tasty. Oh well, I'm just following the cook book so I don't care about this recipe. On to other more important things!

I met up with some friends on Friday night for dinner. When one menu item was listed as chicken and kimchee I didn't quite expect what came out. It was thinly chopped RAW CHICKEN and kimchee. It was cold. I have seen raw chicken in Japan before but gladly passed on the opportunity. Perhaps it's the fear mongering back home that you can get sick easily from raw poultry and meat that gives me an uneasy feeling. It sure doesn't help when I know people can get parasites from raw food as well. It's also possible to eat raw horse meat in Japan and some think of that as a delicacy. But who doesn't think something is some great delicacy? Anyway, not one to waste food I slowly attacked the slimy cabbage blend. Every time I swallowed a bite I had fearful flashes in my mind of waking up the next day incapacitated with salmonella. Thankfully nothing happened to me. I was curious about the subject so I looked it up and found that Japan has far fewer salmonella cases compared to the U.S. And they are eating all kinds of raw things here. Just because I can doesn't mean I want to.

I found some cheap t-shirts on Saturday. I could probably find cheaper online but I didn't want to bother looking through Japanese webpages. Five bucks a piece isn't too terrible. Any higher and I wouldn't have bought. I also bought a hose, sprayer, and connectors to hook up to my bathroom sink. The shower head wasn't going to cut it for spraying out silk screen stencils so I knew I had to get a sprayer of some sort set up. After a bit of fumbling around with some plastic connectors I had hooked it all up and it worked great. The shirts and the spraying issue were the biggest things keeping me from moving forward with screen printing. Now that they have been rectified I can get the artwork prepared and be on my painfully frustrating and loving way of printing.

I wouldn't have gone forward with all of this if I hadn't planned out a suitable multicolor printing solution. I almost decided I was going to relegate myself to boring single color prints because it's ten times easier. But if you recall my previous post about the hinge and clamp system I came up with, you should know that I meant business. I got most of the printing supplies weeks ago now but was too scared to do anything with them, especially the silk screen itself. I was afraid that when I tried to screw the hinges on that I would split the wooden frame and destroy it. This subtle fear was enough to keep me away for awhile. I'm happy to say that today everything is looking top notch. I even put a video together for your viewing pleasure.

I've been meaning to take a picture of all the printing supplies and finally did it. It also includes the free table I picked up from a friend. Take a look at all my goods.

Screen Printing Supplies

From left to right we have the following. A halogen work lamp for exposing screens. The screen/hinge setup with a squeegee for printing. I have five kinds of ink including the primary colors, black, and white. A brush for cleaning and agitating screens during wash time. The spray bottle is for photo emulsion remover which is the liquid in the pink containers. The black trough is the scoop coater I fashioned out of cardboard and duct tap. The emulsion is poured in that and then coated on the screen. The emulsion is in the brown bottle. The OHP film is overhead transparency film for printing artwork on. The t-shirts don't need explaining now do they?

I almost have a whole system setup. This week I will coat my screen in emulsion and do some exposure testing. Then I will know how long to expose the screen for easiest stencil creation and spray out. If I can get the artwork printed out this week there is a good chance of printing next weekend. But if the past weeks have been any indication, it might take me awhile longer. No need to rush a time consuming venture. I pick too many hobbies that test my patience virtue. I guess I should be glad for that bit of character building though.

Let's printing!

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