2010 Graph Expo: A sneak peek

graph expo 2010 a sneak preview

This year’s Graph Expo show at McCormick Place in Chicago promises “four days of comparison shopping, networking, live equipment demonstrations, seminars and critical decision making.” The show floor will be divided tinto four main sections: prepress, press & converting, wide-format, and mailing & fulfillment. To be held from October 3-6, 2010, Graph Expo is the year’s largest display of “live” running equipment in the Americas. With the exception of a few well-known press manufacturers, the show’s exhibitor attendance is looking exciting this year. More than 450 companies are scheduled to show off their stuff in Chicago this year – including most of the “big guys.”

A foundation in flexography

Who isn’t curious about flexography these days and its growth in many print markets? Is a move into flexo the magic solution for printers who are concerned about their market in today’s economy? It is widely acknowledged that offset litho offers outstanding quality and digital allows for profitable short runs and variable data, but there is an undeniable buzz about flexo in our industry today. Is flexo the solution to changing markets for conventional printers?

Featured markets: Hybrid printers and converting equipment

Typically, large-format inkjet printers have either a roll-fed or flatbed option, but what about the printers that have both? Print companies today need to be able to offer their clients a wide variety of capabilities without breaking the bank. That’s where hybrid presses are the perfect option. With the ability to print on rigid substrates as well as flexible materials, print companies are able to print on both types of materials without incurring the cost of a second machine. The flexibility of hybrid presses makes them suitable for a variety of applications in many different industries, including signs, displays, backlit displays, interior building materials, large-size posters, POP displays, vehicle wraps and more. For this section of Featured Markets, we’ve looked at four different printers, each with their own unique features.

For the record: Ian Baitz

This month I had the opportunity to chat with Ian Baitz, chair of the Ryerson School of Graphic Communications Management, to find out what he’s looking forward to most in his new job, and what’s new for students as the school year begins.

Keep automation software updated

Using automation to save money and increase capacity is quickly becoming the norm in the graphic arts industry. Automatic preflight and optimization software for customer supplied PDFs reduces the amount of hands-on work in the prepress department.

Fine art printing – a new opportunity

It wasn’t long ago that artists wanting to produce open or limited edition prints of their artwork needed to have them reproduced via the traditional printing press. The biggest disadvantage was that the artist needed to purchase a run of at least 5,000 prints in order to make it worthwhile even to turn the press on. Therefore, the entire fine art reproduction market was dominated by a small group of publishers who financed, printed and distributed the artwork.

Publishing on the iPad

So here we are more than halfway through the year and over 5 million iPads have been sold. Consumers are rapidly snatching up all the available iPad and iPhone 4 devices as fast as Apple can make them. As a publishing professional you’re asking yourself “what does this mean to me? What impact does this have on the publishing industry and how do we as publishers get involved?”

The simpler the display, the better

A dilemma many exhibitors face is how much information to include in their trade show display. For small exhibitors with one or two product offerings, the answer can be difficult. For larger exhibitors with a multitude of products and services, which might also include several departments, the answer can become a nightmare. There is often so much to tell and the exhibitor wants to make sure the visitors get the right message. The solution starts by taking a step back and looking at the display from the visitor’s perspective.

My customer asked me

“What kinds of clever packaging exist today (part 2 of 3)?”

In this second installment of outside-of-the-box packaging ideas, eco-sensitive and cohesively designed packages are the topics of discussion. It’s exciting to see a paradigm shift; whereby consumers are driving demand not only for what’s on store shelves, but also how those products are packaged. Whether consumers demand that a package becomes more eye-catching, physically smaller or less harmful to the planet, our voices are being heard… and listened to. This is an exciting time!

In this issue…

This summer, I had the opportunity to visit the Printing Industries of America (PIA), in Sewickley PA, and partake in a yearly Teachers’ Update. Over a dozen educators from across North America participated in this weeklong event, lead by Joe Marin, senior analyst, Digital Technologies. It was a lively group, teaching in many different programs ranging from high school to university. The days were full of information from PIA experts on topics relevant to training future leaders for our industry.

View from the publisher – September 2010

I’m delighted to announce that Graphic Arts Magazine has successfully completed its initial audit with Canadian Media Circulation. You may notice the Canadian Media Circulation Audit Logo on page 3. This notification has been forwarded to Canadian Advertising Rates & Data (CARD). We would be happy to supply a copy of this audit if anyone is interested.