Did you know that plastisol ink can be printed on more than just t-shirts? It’s true, you really can use your trusty tried and true ink to print wood posters and all kinds of other natural substrates. The primary reason that more people don’t use plastisol on substrates other than t-shirts is that they don’t think that the substrate will hold up during the curing process. The truth however is that not only will they hold up to the cure but they also will not most likely need to be washed which means they really just need to be dry.
One of the coolest ways that you can use plastisol is in the poster printing process. Plastisol inks are incredibly versatile, highly opaque and offer a variety of unique additives that can really make your poster stand out. For instance if you are printing a nature scene you can use a puff or HD additive to make the trees stand up a little and add texture to your print. With glitters, shimmers, metallics, and even glow in the dark inks the possibilities are really endless.
There are a couple of things that you will want to remember if you decide to get creative with plastisol. The first thing that you will want to keep in mind is that you are in fact using an ink outside of it’s intended purpose so don’t be surprised if things don't go perfect. You will want to be sure that you are using a strong substrate that is made of natural fibers that can withstand the high heat of the curing process. You will also want to keep in mind that your prints may be far more fragile than if they were printed on a textile substrate. For one reason or another people seem to want to pick at plastisol prints when they are on wood or poster stock and then seem to be surprised when they mess it up.
Screen printers will often take information that they’ve learned early in their career and hold on to it as gospel, forgetting that it is still an art and that experimenting is Ok. Don’t be afraid to try and fail or try and succeed because you may just find that you end up with an unexpected reward.