The “Print” Cycle of Life – Part One

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Hey Hey Everyone! Phht Phht Check Check 1,2-1,2 Is this thing on? Mike Fresener here posting from a secret location deep in the Kentucky Wilderness. Blogging from this location gives me a unique perspective of the printing industry. I can see it from the inside out.. Ewww, it’s all dark and inky in here, Let me OUT! Scheeeeeeeew POP! Can someone pass me the Orange Stuff please? I need to clean this stuff off! Enjoy the ramblings that 40 years of screen opener will get ya! I’ll try to start at the beginning.

If you want to see the inside of the secret supply depot you can find me here:

http://IndependentPrintSupplies.com

or on FaceBook here:

https://www.facebook.com/printsupplies

ENJOY!

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Printers Log, Printdate 1.0:

The first memories I can remember are of my parents printing shirts in our kitchen. I remember that the press was yellow. I remember the stack of shirts never seeming to go down. I remember my mom drying the shirts in the oven on a cookie sheet. I was in my carrier on the kitchen counter. This was the beginning of my life and it seems no matter which way I travel, I end up firmly attached to the Screen Printing world.

Over the years I have so many odd memories of the industry. The print shop was in our garage. We used to sell shirts and hats at the swap meets every weekend. If not the swap meet we were at the drag races, boat races or rodeos. Back then a vending pass was a good as a pit pass. While my parents were busy selling prints I was able to sneak away and get WAY to close to the action hardly 10 feet away from cars exploding or watching boats disintegrate.  I saw a man gored to death by a bull at the rodeo while my parents were setting up the booth on practice day. Just about all the memories I have are situated around printing or vending printed stuff in some way, shape or form.

There was a lack of good education on “How To Print”.  When I was 7 my parents decided to write a book to help share the knowledge they had amassed over the years. “How To Print T-Shirts For Fun And Profit” was written. At that point I could already cut rubylith like a master and I could do camera shots without problems. There was a niche to fill in the industry back then. Supplies weren’t as easy to come by. Printers would come to our shop (now out of the garage) to buy supplies on the side. We started offering classes. I remember helping my mom and dad bring the equipment and supplies up the service elevator to our first class in a hotel, the “Sunburst Hotel”. This evolved and grew into being a full supply house with monthly classes. There was no “summer vacation” from school. There was going to the shop and helping out in the classes, or shipping, collating or taking out the trash. With a full cache of art supplies there was always something to do, even if it wasn’t always work related ;)

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I was born into this industry and have been teaching screen printing most of my life. My oldest memory is of screen printing. I started going to trade shows very young and through this have traveled all over the world (ok, some of the world, and just about ALL of the U.S.). This made it easy when I started traveling all over with the Renaissance Festivals for several years. For a number of years I taught the bulk of the screen printing classes at the U.S. Screen Printing Institute. I am currently available for private screen printing consulting. If you need any Print Supplies check out my site http://IndependentPrintSupplies.com.

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