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Andy MacDougall

Squeegeerama 2022 and Dan Stiles Partner for an Electric Event

Andy MacDougall previews a week-long screen printing experience for flatstock art printers.

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Just a few of Stiles’ renowed poster designs for large clients in the sports, music, and entertainment industries.
Just a few of Stiles’ renowed poster designs for large clients in the sports, music, and entertainment industries.

WELCOME TO “ART, AD, OR ALCHEMY?” column/podcast number 10. Our guest is Dr. Frankenstiles… I mean, what else do we call a guy who wants to attach electrodes to a poster and make it come to life???

Actually, he’s called Dan Stiles, a designer and rock poster artist/printer from Portland, Oregon, and he’s visiting us on Vancouver Island for Squeegeerama 2022 later this month. Squeegeerama… Wait, what? A Squeegee-festival?!? In Canaidia?!?

Squeegeerama 2022

Entering its sixth year, this is a weeklong educational screen printing experience unlike most, aimed primarily at flatstock art printers, presented by a crew of hosers on Vancouver Island every summer. It would be wrong to call it an art retreat. More like a charge. Mainly positive, too!

Dan Stiles sets the pace for the poster making community.

Dan Stiles sets the pace for the poster making community.

It’s open to anyone who knows which end of the squeegee is up. The format is simple. We invite one of our favorite artist/printers/designers, plus a small band of other screen printers from near and far to come play squeegees and make prints. Participants join us to learn from the guest artist, but also to work on their own print runs, with our staff helping prep film, screens, and work on their editions. Participants have ranged from university professors to practicing artists, press operators to textile printers, amateurs to pros, all looking to expand their practical knowledge about all aspects of screen printing and stretch their creative wings as they print up a storm and get inspired by the guest artist, and each other. We have plenty of screens, paper, ink, various equipment, yours truly (blatant self-promo), and the fabulous Wachiay Studio staff ready to help bring print projects to life during the week. I guess you might describe it as “learning by doing” and “absorbing techniques in a relaxed atmosphere.” “A lot of fun” is another way.

Watch some highlights from past events here.

Past Squeegeerama attendees enjoyed the creative and encouraging environment that Andy and his group provided.

Past Squeegeerama attendees enjoyed the creative and encouraging environment that Andy and his group provided.

Powering the Print

This year, with Covid hopefully behind us and the future calling, we are amped up and ready to literally turn on the power of print. Our guest artist is Dan Stiles. He’s a graphic designer from Portland who’s worked for a who’s-who of clients in the music, business, and book publishing fields. Dan has also pushed the boundaries of conventional poster making, experimenting with conductive materials, lights, and controllers to produce printed electronic posters.

Dan’s project for Squeegeerama 2022 aims to show poster making and screen printing in a completely different light. Electroluminescent to be precise. With the help of some heavyweights in the world of functional print, including Creative Materials, RH Solutions/ATMA, and Sefar, we want to mix Art with Alchemy in the cauldron of creativity that is screen printing and answer the burning question: Watt’s up with that?

Today’s podcast interview will introduce listeners to Dan’s early years, his introduction and subsequent affinity with screen printing and rock posters, his second career as a rally driver and gearhead in the infamous Gambler 500, and his initial dabbling in electric posters.

Find out why this mixing of art and printed electronics might lead us to some new and innovative uses and products. It may also lead to a visit from the local Fire Department, but our local electronics wizard at MakeIt Zone has assured us these are microvoltages. That’s good because the only thing I know about electricity is it’s invisible and it can kill you. Hopefully this adventure is not too shocking!

We welcome you to plug into media feeds later this month as we report on our progress and the results of our work at Squeegeerama 2022.

Listen to episode 10 of “Art, Ad, or Alchemy?” here.

PHOTO GALLERY (20 IMAGES)

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Andy MacDougall is a screen printing trainer and consultant based on Vancouver Island in Canada, and a member of the Academy of Screen & Digital Printing Technology. If you have production problems you’d like to see him address in “Shop Talk,” email your comments and questions to [email protected]

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