Nov 10, 2010

MacGyver the shit out of it.

As I was getting ready to prepare some screens this morning I realised how makeshift a lot of my studio equipment is.  See, when the idea first came to me to set up a screen studio, I was reluctant to do it without a $100G bank loan, a proper studio space in a commercial area, an 8 arm printing press, you get the idea.  I wanted to start BIG.  I thought that if I didn't have a studio worth 1/4 of a million dollars then I wasn't a professional, that it wasn't a proper business.  I quickly realised that I was wrong (read the whole story here) 

Now I see that when starting out, it's fine to start out small, and do what you have to in order to succeed.  I'm not saying set up a shanty hut to work out of with cheap crappy supplies, half of which were found at the dump.  I'm just saying it's fine to be resourceful when appropriate.  My lightsafe space for drying screens is the cardboard box that the screens were actually shipped to me in.  I make it light safe by draping 2 or 3 towels over the opening.  My fancy way to expose screens is rigging up a 500 watt light to one arm of my press and letting it hang over the screen, which is placed on the floor.  I clean screens at a carwash near my house, since I don't have a proper washout booth.  Amazing, right?  Learning to MacGyver could be the difference between going into business, and daydreaming about going into business.

It will be a cold day in hell when I get a $100,000 loan from the bank.  But by prioritizing the necessities (like a proper printing press, flash cure unit, ink system, and dryer) and jimmying up the rest MacGyver style, I was able to set up a (small) professional screen studio.  Now I can start working toward my commercial space and 8 arm press.  Or perhaps just toward building a lightsafe space for my screens, and installing a washout booth so I don't have to go to the carwash twice a week.  Baby steps though, right?