New White Paper on Graphic Communications Workforce

Fairfax, Va. – The Specialty Graphic Imaging Association (SGIA) today announces that registration is open for a pair of screen printing-centric workshops designed specifically for apparel decorators. “Art & Separations for Screen Printed Apparel” (December 2 – 3) and “Totally T-Shirts! Apparel Screen Printing” (December 4 – 6) will be held at SGIA’s lab in Fairfax, Va. Attendees will save 25% by registering for the pair and can register at

“Register for one, or really maximize your value and time by registering for both,” said Johnny Shell, Vice President, Print Technology and Training, SGIA. “This hyper-focused week provides an excellent opportunity to learn about workflow from A to Z. Students will experience a variety of art types and separation techniques, and then get hands-on experience printing the variety of art covered earlier in the week.

Dane Clement, Great Dane Graphics, leads “Art & Separations for Screen Printed Apparel,” a class unlike any other on the market. Clement will guide attendees through creative design basics to produce eye-popping prints and cover the secrets of producing separations for any type of printing. Attendees will learn how to handle simple vector art and more advanced separation techniques, like four-color process and simulated process.

“Most production artists are self-taught, and as a result, may lack some of the efficiency skills and separation techniques they need to improve quality and productivity. This class has the industry’s best instructor on this topic. Dane Clement is a recognized expert on art and separations for screen printed T-shirts,” Shell said.

For “Totally T-Shirts! Apparel Screen Printing,” SGIA brings back screen printing legend Charlie Taublieb and a hands-on workshop that guides students through stretching, coating and exposing screens and hands-on experience with today’s popular printing techniques.

Designed for users new to screen printing T-shirts as well as seasoned professionals, this workshop will spark new ideas and offer plenty of practice with advanced techniques that set leading shops far above the rest.

This intensive 3-day workshop offers the full range of training and hands-on printing including:

  • Advanced screen making techniques using the latest high-tech equipment
  • Artwork and separations
  • Press setup and registration
  • Critical facts for using plastisol, water-based discharge, special effects and more
  • Parameters for proper flashing and curing
  • Advanced printing techniques (simulated, four-color process, special effects)
  • Production tips and tricks to increase efficiency, throughput and yield

“Our neutral, unbiased training methods focus on technique and proper execution that will improve productivity and efficiency,” said Shell. “I encourage apparel decorators to send their production teams to at least one, if not both.”

The Graphic Communications Workforce Coalition (GCWC) has completed a comprehensive survey of the industry and released a white paper detailing results and recommended actions. The paper, titled “Workforce Concerns in Graphic Communications” was a direct result of an industry survey taken earlier this year. The respondents covered all areas of the industry including service providers, suppliers, associations, and schools.

The paper was researched and written by Donna Painter (Millersville University), Steve Bonoff (Printing Industry Midwest), Jeff Peterson (Foil & Special Effects Association) and Justin Egresitz (Millersville University. The paper includes a summary of the findings as well as a key section on how organizations can be a part of the solution. This includes several recommendations for actions that can be taken by companies, organizations and schools. Career awareness is a key item on the GCWC agenda, and this important information is part of its work to promote and support the industry.

Created in 2019, the Coalition membership currently consists of over 50 organizations from across all spectrums of the industry and representation of North America. The group comprises concerned associations, educators, and industry representatives (service providers and suppliers) who are united to address this key industry concern. The paper can be downloaded by going to the GCWC website at

As stated in its organizing documents, “The purpose of the coalition will be to coordinate the efforts of all organizations representing the broad scope of the graphic communications industry for creating awareness, recruitment of new people into the industry, providing a framework for apprenticeship and training programs, and the retention of the existing workforce. By combining the separate efforts, experiences, initiatives of various organizations, coordinating actions, and the sharing of ideas and resources, it is expected that all will benefit.”

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