This is not a copier.

The risograph is a digital press, invented in the late twentieth century to fulfill the high output requirements of churches, law firms, and schools.  In recent years this technology has been adopted by artists and designers for its unique and appealing aesthetic.

After digital files are prepared and sent to print, the riso burns a stencil of your image into a natural fiber paper like “master”.  The master is wrapped around a color drum and spins as paper is fed into the machine.  Ink is pushed through the master making a print on the paper.


Riso inks are non-petroleum, soy-based, and low VOC. Below are our available ink colors and color value scale ranging from 100% to 10%.

Riso brightred_colorscale
Bright Red
Riso Fluorescent Pink Color Scale
Fluorescent Pink
Riso flatgold_colorscale
Flat Gold
Riso green_colorScale
Riso Blue Color Scale
Riso teal_colorscale
Riso burgundy_ColorScale
Riso Black Color Scale

More colors can be produced by layering/mixing inks (process colors)

Riso Color Process
Flock (detail)
4 Color Process Flat Gold, Bright Red, Medium Blue, Black
Designed by Colin Sutherland
11 x 17 Artist Print


Stock Paper:

Mohawk Via Vellum Radiant White – Cover 80#
Mohawk Via Vellum Radiant White – Text 70#

Mohawk Via Vellum Cream White – Cover 80#
Mohawk Via Vellum Cream White – Text 70#

We can accommodate custom paper orders and would highly suggest French Paper Company Papers. https://www.frenchpaper.com/

The Riso can only print on uncoated paper, with a maximum paper size of 11×17.

The paper industry is not pretty.  To help us sleep at night we source our papers from Mohawk and French Paper Company.  To learn more about their environmental efforts check the links below.





It is a good idea to keep the Riso printing process in mind when designing your project. Take a look at our available ink colors and their value scales(above) to help you with this process.

Files are sent to print in the form of 11×17″ or 8.5×11″ grayscale pdfs. Each color will require it’s own pdf. In your design black will equate to 100% coverage of whatever color is being printed, lighter grays generate less coverage and therefore create lighter values (as long as a light colored paper is being used).

The Riso automatically creates halftones.

Printable area is approximately 10.25 x 16.25″ for 11×17″ paper and 7.75in x 10.25″ for 8.5×11″ paper.

I repeat, printable area is approximately 10.25 x 16.25″ for 11×17″ paper and 7.75in x 10.25″ for 8.5×11″ paper.

Please include a small bleed and crop marks for full bleed projects.


We are happy to help you with this process or answer any questions you may have.



Colors are printed one at a time and register will occasionally be slightly off (colors not exactly lining up).

Paper is fed through the machine via paper feed rollers.  When paper is fed through the machine multiple times ink can transfer from rollers to paper leaving “track marks”.  We will work to our best ability to minimize and avoid this.

Riso uses liquid ink that drys through absorption.  Heavy ink coverage can lead to smudging and transferring between pages. Even after a print has dried smudging can occure, heavy ink coverage is not be ideal for book covers or any project that will often be handled.  Small price to pay for those beautiful soy based inks!

These qualities and limitations should not only be noted but embraced. These occurrences and slight variations within the edition are the great Riso qualities that people go crazy for.