What’s a “Split Fountain?”

October 16, 2013 at 10:27 am 1 comment

Vintage-OPEver heard of this technique in screen printing?  It’s been used in the industry for a long time, and here’s Kieth Stevens to explain more about it.  This printing tip was recently published on Impressions as well.

The split fountain technique, used for creating color gradations, involves combining two or more colors on one screen.

To go from a lighter color to a darker color of the same hue, screen printers often place the lighter color on one side of the screen and the darker color on the other side, and then blend the two colors in the middle of the screen. This technique also works for blending multiple colors or one color over a white underbase.

The split fountain technique also can be used for printing separate design elements using different colors in the same screen. For example, if you want to print a design that needs 14 colors but only have eight stations, you can “cheat” using the split fountain method. By printing a couple of the design elements that are spread far apart or that can be blended onto one screen, you can reduce the amount of screens needed.

The vintage sample in the image shown above features colors that were blended using the split fountain technique:

– The blues change from light to dark in the “ocean” text and in the actual ocean below.

– The orange and yellow blend in the sunburst at the back of the image.

– The green in the palm tree on the left and the pineapple on the right were both printed with one screen.

This “12-color” design was printed with an 8-color printer.

Kieth Stevens is the Western regional sales manager for International Coatings. He has been teaching screen printing for more than 10 years and is a regular contributor to International Coatings’ blogs. For more information, visit iccink.com – See more at: http://impressions.issshows.com/screen-printing-news/Screen-Printing-Tip–6978.shtml#sthash.nR4IA9CM.dpuf

International Coatings manufactures a complete line of phthalate-compliant screen printing inks, including a wide variety of whites, specialty inks, special effects inks, color matching systems, additives and reducers.  For more information on our products, please visit our website at www.iccink.com.


Entry filed under: General, How-To, Printing Tips. Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , .

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1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. Rochell  |  November 22, 2013 at 12:05 pm

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