When I think of screenprinting, what comes to mind first are often bright, bold colors. I was surprised to find artist Dan McCarthy’s work rather dark, mostly representing night scenes. In fact, there are recurring images in paintings, art prints, drawings and posters: the viewer often sees telephone poles, wires, silhouettes of forests at night, houses with the lights on in the dead of night. In an interview, McCarthy mentions that he is attracted to telephone poles and wires because he likes the idea of drawing attention to something that is generally overlooked or ignored. Also, he finds that the variety of intersecting lines are a lot of fun to draw. Also, all of his prints share a similar, dominant style, a style that is very much graphic.
In the same interview, he also explains his technique when it comes to creating his posters and prints, which are mostly screen printed. He stars with a pen and ink drawing, and then scans the drawing into Photoshop and add the color on different layers. He rarely uses more that four or five colors. From Photoshop, he prints out films of each color layer and expose each layer onto a screen. After that, he begins the printing process.
The poster below is a poster that McCarthy did for ABC’s teleseries LOST as part of a fan appreciation project.
– McCarthy, Dan. “Interview With Dan McCarthy: Celebrated Screen Print Artist.” Interview with Lara Cory. Escape Into Life.