One of the main issues with DIY publications, such as zines, is achieving good quality print while keeping the costs low – to be able to offer the finished product at a reasonable price.
With Ten by 10 the choice was to create a zine in black and white to be photocopied, but that’s just one of the available options, and probably not the most exciting one from a graphic design point of view.
Recently I’ve been exploring alternative printing systems and found risograph would represent a good compromise in terms of quality and price.
Risograph printers work very similarly to screen or silk printing, but are more cost effective, energy efficient and produce a minimum amount of waste. The machine creates a master of an image, and then reproduce it at high speed on paper using soy based inks – the advantage of using real ink is that the image won’t need to be ‘fixed’ by heat, as it happens with photocopiers.
It is not intended for overly colourful and complicated designs (as the ink may smudge), but it’s perfect for artists’ publications and most print works.
In London there are many good places where to get risograph prints, but I’ve been chatting to the ladies at PaperWork Press in Brixton and it’s worth getting in contact if you need any quote or are just interested in knowing more about the process, they’re lovely.