A methodology for the rapid design, screening, and optimization of coating systems with surface relief structures, using a combination of statistical experimental design, high-throughput experimentation, data mining, and graphical and mathematical optimization routines was developed. The methodology was applied to photopolymers used in photoembossing applications. A library of 72 films was prepared by dispensing a given amount of sample onto a chemically patterned substrate consisting of hydrophilic areas separated by fluorinated hydrophobic barriers. Film composition and film processing conditions were determined using statistical experimental design. The surface topology of the films was characterized by automated AFM. Subsequently, models explaining the dependence of surface topologies on sample composition and processing parameters were developed and used for screening a virtual 4000-membered in silico library of photopolymer lacquers. Simple graphical optimization or Pareto algorithms were subsequently used to find an ensemble of formulations, which were optimal with respect to a predefined set of properties, such as aspect ratio and shape of the relief structures.