Abstract: A method and apparatus for printing directly onto a surface employs a printing plate through which pigmented fluid passes directly onto such surface and a reservoir for supplying a highly uniform distribution of pigmented fluid preferably at a relatively accurately controlled pressure to the printing plate. A plurality of minute openings through the printing plate forming a printing image thereon controllably pass the pigmented fluid directly onto such surface. These openings may be tapered to reduce misting and to facilitate breaking surface tension as pigmented fluid is transferred directly to the surface. The reservoir may be a porous, permeable sintered titanium cylinder about which the printing plate is mounted. Moreover, the invention includes a method of forming such a printing plate employing optical, and preferably laser, scanning techniques so that the printing image on the printing plate accurately represents the original image.