Paper Matters Blog
Ink and Paper: The Half and Half

A glimpse at the screen-printing process

This November, Domtar Paper launched The Gallery Collection—an exclusive, invitation-only event in Los Angeles, CA on the eve of Adobe MAX 2019.

This live gallery exhibition is an extension of The Gallery where printers and designers have shared their work and sought out “print-spiration” for over seven years. We wanted to take a small portion of the pieces on the road and showcase them in a live setting so that The Gallery Collection attendees could literally get a hands-on experience of what Cougar®, Lynx® and Husky™ paper is all about.

As part of a thank you to The Gallery Collection attendees, we wanted to send a unique, limited edition printed keepsake that would remind them of how awesome the power of paper really is.

As a graphic designer, I’ve always been fascinated with the art of screen-printing. A couple of years ago, I stumbled across a small, full-service design agency and screen-printer, by the name of The Half and Half via Instagram and quickly became a huge fan.

The Half and Half ( specialize in the design and printing of limited-edition concert posters for a variety of ground-breaking musicians such as Wilco, Phish and the Avett Brothers.

As I scrolled through their Instagram feed, I noticed that many of the posters they showcased were printed on Domtar Paper’s 100 lb. Cougar® Natural or Bright White cover stock. Between their top-level illustration style, masterful use of color and expert screen-printing technique, I knew that they were going to be perfect for this project. I was confident they would create a piece that was totally unique, connected with the audience and that serve as a tangible reminder of each attendee’s experience at The Gallery Collection event.

The poster had to meet a few mandatory criteria:

  1. Capture the essence of Los Angeles while visually representing the creative industry
  2. It could only be 2 colors—utilizing Domtar’s blue and green brand colors
  3. Finished size had to be 8 in. x 10 in. for mailing

Knowing these mandatory, The Half and Half crew got straight to work and within a few days, their designer had sent us over three completely unique pencil-sketched concepts.

The concepts were so well thought out that it made it pretty hard to make a choice. After some internal discussion and a round or two of tweaks, we landed on what would ultimately be the final printed piece. Each limited-edition poster was hand-signed and editioned by Nate Puza, The Half and Half designer that put his magical touch into the artwork for this piece.

In my opinion, this piece came together perfectly for so many reasons: First, the process of seeing those preliminary sketches from the designer and getting a “behind-the scenes” look at what was in the designer’s mind when the pencil was hitting the paper. This is always exciting, especially for someone like myself, who loves to draw and work out ideas in pencil first.

Second, seeing the transformation from a pencil sketch to finalized artwork. I always take joy in reflecting on how the final piece was executed from the original concept.

Third, seeing it PRINTED! Nothing beats feeling the smoothness of the paper, holding that paper up to your nose and smelling the ink on the paper.

Finally, the reaction of the person who will receive this printed piece of craftsmanship and that moment when they say “Oh wow! This is so awesome!” and cannot wait to share it with all of their paper-loving friends, especially on the “Gram.”

Although this piece only utilizes two colors, the warmth of Cougar® Natural 100 lb. Cover Smooth Finish, acts as a third color and allows the artwork to really come to life on the page.

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