How does the riso work?
The Risograph machine works by creating a stencil that is automatically wrapped around an ink drum. It then duplicates an impression of the image onto paper by rolling it over the drum and through the machine. It’s all automatic, like a photocopier.
It prints one or two layers of colour at a time. Thich means if you want to print more than two colours you need to feed the paper through the machine more than once.
The Riso ME9350 can print on many different paper stocks (up to 300gsm).
The Riso wasn’t designed to be an artistic tool, but it has been adopted as such by people looking for affordable methods of colour reproduction and people looking for less mass-produced methods of printing. The machine’s flaws, such as slight mis-registry and a sometimes uneven coverage of ink over solid blocks, are often embraced by its users.
Colours available at the Rizzeria
Setting up your file
Save your work as PDFs with no compression, minimum of 300dpi. Separate each part of the image that you want to print in a different colour into different files. Save each file with the name of the colour and page number (or back/front) and a number that indicates in what order that layer should be printed
– e.g. for a blue layer printed on the front of a double-sided paper (when the blue ink should be printed first), name it blue_front_1.PDF.
Convert the colours into greyscale, with 80% saturation for full coverage (ONLY if you have VERY LARGE, solid blocks of ink on the page – most people will not need to do this) and less for lighter shades of colour. Make sure that if you want a bright colour that you are printing with an image that is 100% black. If you convert a lighter colour (for example, yellow) to grayscale it will end up about 50% black. You need to make it 100% black if you want it to be the brightest yellow possible.
What kind of paper can I use?
The machine prints well on a variety of uncoated stocks. It’s best to keep weights under 300gsm, and above 60gsm (like newsprint).
Line art images should be scanned at a minimum 600dpi (1200dpi preferred) and at the actual size to be printed.
Registration & Trapping
Designing for the Risograph takes into consideration trapping and overlay. Allow for 2mm trapping.
Print & Paper Size
Please note the riso cannot print full bleed A3.
You will need to leave a 5mm border around the edge of an A3 page.
The maximum printable area is: 287 x 410mm.
Other notes & tips
But don’t be scared! Check out our samples box on site, and our Instagram to see what beautiful works have been printed with us.
Text box item sample content