Grow Your Own Media
in Permaset Blog5 Jun 2014 | 0 Comments
A Print Shop Creating Work For And With The Community
Grow Your Own Media began in 2008 as a community-based print studio. It offered group classes, equipment rental and one-on-one screen print help. Currently in it’s sixth year, GYOM now has a staff of five and balances shop time between specialized printing services and open studio hours.
The founder, Tomas Staub, was a social worker before starting GYOM. Therefore, a business model based on a community print shop seemed natural given his background. GYOM’s space is comprised of a large open plan with lots of natural light. Inks, presses, belt dryers and exposure units are all out in the open and ready for the next project- whether it’s a student renting by the hour or the crew finishing a print job.
GYOM has seen a shift in their business over the years. Former students are now their clients. As the demand for custom printing has continued to grow, GYOM has adapted to provide specialized services while still maintaining open studio hours. Their prices are comparable to other print shops. They have no minimums, encourage small runs and enjoy interesting requests like a recent client asking to screen print on a rounded and shiny metal lunch box. Their address has also factored into their success. Located in Atwater Village, just North of downtown Los Angeles, has proven to be a good location for them. Their clients include musicians, artists and like-minded individuals that appreciate the art and process of hand screen printing.
Asked what distinguishes GYOM from other screen print shops and Megan, the shop manager, responds, “our quality, our commitment and our willingness to go the extra mile for our clients and our students.”
In addition to Tomas, every employee at GYOM has an arts background. This means that clients get the expertise of both screen printing and fine art. The unique mix is working because GYOM has continued to grow by one employee each year and does not do any advertising.
In their shop, GYOM uses both plastisol and water-based inks. “More and more of our clients are coming in asking for water-based inks. We know when it comes to coverage, Permaset can’t be beat. It’s our ink of choice for all our water-based jobs,” say Megan.
GYOM’s success comes from having superior customer service, reasonable prices and a willingness to adapt. On the studio end, everything is for rent which helps reduce the initial costs of screen printing for new printers. Students can rent squeegees, screens, ink and the presses on an hourly basis. On the shop end, the team is dedicated to providing high quality prints and artwork that reflects the personality and overall feel of a community-centered business.