Printed on French: Get to Know Farewell Transmissions Prints
How Farewell Transmission Prints got their start:
My name is Chris Estrada, I’m a printmaker in Southern California who operates under Farewell Transmission Prints. The first time I experimented with printmaking was when I was a teenager and taught myself to screen print shirts in my bedroom for the punk bands, I played in. I received my BFA in Printmaking from Cal State Long Beach and have screen-printed something nearly every day since.
What I love most about printmaking, and screen printing specifically, is that it allows me to bring to life what's bouncing around in my head, in multiples, so that I can share it with people.
How did your love for French Paper Spark?
I was introduced to French Paper while taking a screen printing workshop at Penland School of Craft, taught by Jay Ryan. French Paper was all we used throughout the class, and I specifically remember him showing us the greatness of Speckletone. Prior to using French, I printed predominantly on cotton rag paper with deckled edges, which I found finicky to register. Once I used French’s Speckletone, True White, 80 lb., I was hooked and never looked back.
4-Color Print on French Speckletone, True White, 80 lb Cover
Staying Inspired w/ Punk Rock:
In addition to being a print nerd, I’m a total record nerd--specifically collecting punk and hardcore 7”s records. I’ve worked in record stores on and off for the better part of a decade and have spent that time absorbing and combing over album art and liner notes. My biggest inspiration comes from record sleeves, flyers, and general music ephemera, and a lot of that influence is reflected in my work.
Elevating a Favorite Project with French Paper:
This is a tough question, considering I’ve been using French Paper religiously for the past couple of years. While 100 lb. Cardstock has my heart, I fawn over French’s 70 lb. text. Text paper as well, using it for every zine I’ve made, be it Screen-printed or risograph. My favorite project is an ongoing zine “Detritus”, in which a dozen artists mail me their scraps, mistakes, sketches, or unfinished pieces that I then collage into a cohesive piece, scan, and screen print, then compile into a zine intended to highlight the beauty in mistake making. It’s allowed me to work with worldwide artists and the zine is always printed on French Paper.
Poster printed on French Speckletone, True White, 80 lb. Cover
What advice do you have for an artist who wants to start screen printing?
Just dive in! However, you can whether that be by taking a screen printing course at an art store, picking up a kit, or teaching yourself through online tutorials. I taught myself as a teenager with a borrowed kit, failed to read the directions, and did everything in the hardest way possible. But I still managed to make something myself which fueled my career. The biggest mistakes you can make learning to screen print are so minor in the grand scheme of things, you may as well just lean into them.
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