A charming imperfect printing technique 

I came across Kelli Anderson at the first online Adobe MAX, during lockdown, when she talked about paper folding and how it has inspired solutions for packaging experiments to send in to space. I've followed her work ever since and I love how she's bringing a bit more analogue into a digital world. 

When Kelli started offering an online version of her riso animation class I soon signed up. 

But what to animate?

It was early Spring here in the UK and I'd just been out to watch a starling murmuration in a local town. I was thinking about the rhythm of the birds as they swooped around and thought I'd try to recreate the shapes they formed in the sky. I spent a fair amount of time watching back videos I'd made, getting a feel for it. The first frames, I traced from the videos on my iPad. I drew a few sections and then filled in the gaps to make a short sequence of 70 frames - using Procreate. 

After a discussion of the riso printing technique and a virtual walk around the machine we went though the process of creating separate frames before emailing them off to be printed. The following day we had a scan of the images and were able to put the riso animation together. 

What gives riso its particular quality is its imperfectness. You could print the exact same frame 20 times and it would work as an animation. The slight change in registration (that mean the images don't quite line up) and the difference in texture of the print and  paper all add to the charm.

Having learned more about the process I would do things differently next time, although that's the point of learning isn't it... I have this process in my creative toolkit now and I wouldn't be surprised if it resurfaced in some form in future work.



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Kelli's website https://kellianderson.com/blog/ and link to the Riso course (as of June 2023) https://kellianderson.com/links/ or follow on Instagram @kellianderson


Contact Me

I live and work in Worcester in the UK. If you'd like to email me sayhello@karendewson.com