To think about ways of using the riso printer for the Riso Show project, I looked at Rollo Press to get an understanding of how they use the printer to produce publications.
Urs Lehni started Rollo Press in 2007 when he purchased a Risograph printer. He had been working on commissions and found the riso to be the perfect printer to produce spontaneous personal projects. Working closely with some friends, they proposed the idea of publishing their own work so Lehni purchased his own riso shortly after.
Having looked at the work Rollo Press create I really want to show some texture in the signage that I am creating because I find that while the riso printer can print beautiful areas of block colour it is able to really bring out the texture in a print in a way that isn’t possible with screen printing or other methods.
What are your thoughts on Riso printing as a fad?
On the one hand I think it’s great to see so many designers share the same kind of enthusiasm, energy and will to produce projects under similar circumstances: self-initiated, self-organised, self-financed, etc. It seems to me that this field has a lot of extra energy — or maybe also a lot of frustration — and to run a small press seems to serve as the perfect offset to channel that energy. However, what I’m quite critical about is the fact that Riso printing has became a rather fixed model tied to a certain aesthetic in a very short amount of time. In my view, the outcomes of a lot of these types of presses look very much alike, and in many cases the Riso printer is used more like a Photoshop filter, in order to add a certain chic. Also, every now and then I’m wondering what would happen if we would manage to find a way of combining all these scattered small initiatives instead of everybody working in his own niche?
Words by Urs Lehni on It’s Nice That
I have included the above quote by Urs because I found his view on the rise of riso extremely interesting and from my developed understanding of riso printing since we visited Hato Press at the start of the year – I have to agree with him. When I used riso to print my individual response a month ago, I used it more for the aesthetic value rather than what the printer could bring to the table.
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