Printing and Imaging

Special Effects: Sticky Images

By Gretchen A. Peck

Sticky graphics—that’s what print buyers want. Whether artists or marketers, they share a common goal to create images that grab attention and leave an impression, images that compel you, and perhaps even haunt you. Sometimes the vision calls for those images to become part of the environment, to be stuck on a wall, wrapped around architecture, placed over windows, and all kinds of surfaces.

It’s not unusual in large format graphics to print to interesting substrates that are both visually intriguing and install challenged. Specialty substrates—such as metallic and chalkboard—with adhesive applications abound, but print service suppliers must be both left- and right-brained when choosing among them. Print buyers look to the print provider for technical and performance guidance, as well as creative insight into how ideas may be achieved.

Read more at: http://www.digitaloutput.net/special-effects-sticky-images/

Published by Digital Output magazine, February 2014

Printing and Imaging

Variable data makes the leap

By Gretchen A. Peck

Commercial printers and their print-buying clientele long ago recognized the benefits of personalized print and built workflows that took in vast volumes of disparate data and blended it with static print images. The ability to customize each and every page that comes off a press changed the marketing and advertising game forever—for the better.

For example, consider email marketing. Experian Marketing Services’ 2014 publication, 2013 Email Market Study, found that personalized emails inspire six times the response, transaction, and revenue rates than non-personalized messages. And the effectiveness of personalized print is equally compelling. The study reports that customized promotional mailings may garner as much as 29 percent better open rates.

Now, digital large format print service providers (PSPs) are taking a page from the commercial print playbook and rolling out variable data print (VDP) for their own breed of print projects.

Read more at: http://www.digitaloutput.net/variable-data-makes-the-leap/

Publishing by Digital Output magazine, April 2014

Printing and Imaging

Answering the riddle of environmentally friendly media

By Gretchen A. Peck

Though printing celebrates significant progress in its efforts to be more environmentally considerate, large format still has a long way to go—starting with how the industry at large deals with media. Part of the reason why large format graphics may be lagging behind is confusion.

Casually tossed-about terms like sustainable, “green,” and environmentally responsible are relative to one another. Is media green if it isn’t comprised of some percentage of recycled material? Is it green only if it can be inserted into standard recycling streams? Can substrates be green if they have to be finished with the introduction of a chemical-based solution? Is it green if it can be used and reused with ease, without loss of integrity, such as textile-based print?

Print service providers (PSPs) are tasked with juggling these questions and supplying answers to their customers. In return, they look to media vendors to provide sustainable products. Here, we profile PSPs who are helping solve the sustainable media riddle.

Read more at: http://www.digitaloutput.net/answering-the-riddle/

Publishing by Digital Output magazine, May 2014

Printing and Imaging

Prototyping and Short-Run Packaging

By Gretchen A. Peck

Without question, digital inkjet has transformed virtually every segment of the print industry—commercial print, sign and graphics, books, and publications. Many predicted that digital inkjet would also transform packaging—not in the sense that long-run inkjet production would entirely replace more traditional print methods like flexography, screenprinting, and offset. Rather, it was seen as an enabler to the creative process, allowing for better comping, prototyping, and in some cases, short-run production.

However, since the advent of quality roll-fed and flatbed print engines, digital inkjet printing has yet to live up to its packaging potential.

Read more at: http://www.dpsmagazine.com/prototyping-and-short-run-packaging/

Published by DPS Magazine, July 2014