About Very Good Press
Born out of a love of travel, inspired by the beauty and nostalgia of vintage travel posters and a passion for the craftsmanship of an artisan printed screen print, Very Good Press are purveyors and creators of collectible travel inspired screen printed posters, celebrating the golden age of travel.
At Very Good Press, we are crazy passionate about design and craft, as well as all things vintage and retro. We will stop at nothing to produce posters that you would be proud to hang in your home or office.
Why Screen Print?
A decidedly analog process in a modern, digital world, screen printing captures the nostalgia of a classic poster celebrating the romance of travel.
Each screen print is handmade, inks are mixed by hand and the printing is a painstaking manual process. Minute variations in ink consistency, paper texture, registration, pressure will result in a beautifully unique print each time. Unashamedly analog, imperfect and once off. No two screen prints are exactly the same. We love the handmade screen print for its incredibly vibrant colors, tactile nature and honest handmade aesthetic.
A Brief History of Screen Printing
Silk screen printing has a long history that dates back all the way to the Song Dynasty in China where a screen was first stretched over a wooden frame. Stencils made of leaves were used to create designs that were then subsequently printed.
Screen printing was then adapted by other countries such as Japan. New techniques were developed but did not take off in Europe and the West until the expensive and scarce silk mesh became more readily available for trade. At the World Fairs of the 19th century, the Japanese screen printed fabrics were greatly admired by the Europeans, who subsequently started printing from screens made of silk as well. The first industrial screen printing patent was granted to Simon Samuel from Manchester, England in 1907.
Perhaps the medium was really made popular when renown artist Andy Warhol first screen printed a dazzlingly stylised image of Marilyn Monroe in 1962, shortly after she committed suicide in her Los Angeles home. The image became an icon of the era and the popularity of screen printing took off.
Compared to modern digital prints, screen printing is a very labour intensive art form, but the results are always worth the effort and time. The screen, which consists of a wooden or metal frame, has a fine fabric (originally silk, now nylon) stretched onto it, and a stencil is created by obscuring parts of the screen in which the image will not be printed, either by a manual covering or a photomechanical process, involving a photo-sensitive emulsion that is applied to the screen before being covered with the design film and exposed to UV light, not unlike how a black and white film negative is exposed.
Each individual colour on a screen has to be prepared separately on its own screen, and the final image is printed in stages, one colour and one screen at a time. Extremely care has to be taken in the registration of the screens and paper between each stage to ensure the print comes out successfully, but the process is organic, and 100% perfect registration is never possible, giving each print slight variations and an individuality and character absent in clinically perfect digital prints.
Like handwriting and painting, each print is a reflection of the passion and unique signature of the artisan printer.
The Beauty of Handmade
In today’s world of mass production and the generic consumer products, there is a yearning to go back to the basics, to a time when there was a connection between the maker of a product and the user, a relationship lost in the strings of ones and zeros of a digital process.
A human touch
Call us old fashioned, but at Very Good Press, we love the beauty of a handmade product. We are in awe at the talents of the artisans that create them. We love the intoxicating smell of ink and musty wood of the printing presses and the imperfection of the final print. We love that each print is unique and unlike any other.
A handmade product is a labour of love, a testament to the skill and craft of artisans who have perfected centuries old techniques.
We mourn the loss of the artisan and the rise of the marketer, we reject the age of planned obsolescence and support the people who still want to make work that stands the test of time, products that bear the mark of the maker and artwork that is an extension of the owner’s personality.
Proudly Handmade in the USA
Very Good Press posters are hand printed in Kansas City by America artisans and on quality FSC-Certified paper from 6th generation independent family-owned American paper mill, French Paper, located in Michigan, USA.
We take exceptional pride in our work and the knowledge that our artwork graces the living rooms, bedrooms, studies and offices in the USA and around the world.