As the Oregon Maple artwork is to be installed outdoors the ink printed onto the lycra fabric needed to be set This is done using heat. My instructions from Gerry in Digiscreen was to have the fabric at 160 degrees for between 1-3 minutes. In large scale printers they use huge ovens that can hold exact temperatures for specific amounts of time. Not having access to these ovens I turned to my trusty iron and ironing board!
Before I could finalise the correct setting and duration of the ironing process I did a few tests with scrap fabric. See image below. Showing the fabric with no treatment on the left and one with 1,2 and 3 minutes on the right. To the naked eye it’s hard to see which setting is best but I decided to go for the longest duration.
I therefore put my iron on its cotton setting and began the ironing process. Three minutes for every ironing board width by forty times per length of fabric (there are two) equals….many minutes of ironing, which I is my least favorite thing to do. I persevered and the fabric is now ready to be used outdoors.
The next stage in the artwork process was to decide where in the tree to install and how long each section of fabric needed to be. David Hackett kindly booked and organised getting the large and cumbersome scissors lift to the Oregon Maple on the morning of the 14th of September. I will post another blog about this process at a later stage.