Sub Shots: Making Great Artwork More Affordable

The evolution of SubShots by Dye Hard Sublimations over the past few years is a story that epitomizes the growing capabilities of inkjet and dye-sublimation printing. The team started out dye-sub printing uniforms for lacrosse leagues, but with new products and technology, they’ve begun to evolve into photography reproduction and décor applications and even Christmas ornaments.

“We had every intention of doubling-down on apparel, but once we got the equipment and printable hard surfaces, like ChromaLuxe metal photo panels, we thought: Why don’t we just produce really great, vibrant pictures on ChromaLuxe?” says Sean Calvillo of SubShots. “We think we make good artwork more affordable.”

Cavillo says his team is currently curating more photographic content from professional photographers, and customers can choose from a library of images and order metal or wood prints through SubShots ecommerce site. They also offer customized work for commercial interior design, such as the aerial shot divided into multiple ChromaLuxe metal panels, pictured above.

While the art/photography side of their business gains momentum, SubShots hasn’t veered to far from its sporting beginnings. With the purchase of an Epson SureColor P8000 44-inch aqueous printer from LexJet, SubShots was able to start producing complementary graphics, like life-size wall cutouts of athletes, like the lacrosse player pictured.

“We’ve augmented the metal pictures with LexJet Print-N-Stick Fabric to create wall decals to keep with our sports roots,” Calvillo says. “We want to be the one vendor who can do both.”

The creative team has also been working with ChromaLuxe for customized holiday gifts. “We have a photographer customer who was taking the pictures she shot during a session and dye-sub printing them as double-sided ornaments,” Calvillo says.

The SubShots team became a LexJet Blue Business member, and Calvillo says the shipping program has been a game-changer. “LexJet’s personalized service combined with the free shipping program and your competitiveness on price is why you guys are always my first call,” he says.

Variety Is the Key for Photo Finishing Options

If you’re celebrating National Photo Month along with us, now’s a good time to consider all the options you have to offer a variety of photo finishes to your customers, such as canvas wraps, photo panels, self-adhesives and face-mounted acrylics, just to name a few.

Canvas Wraps. “When we talk with a photographer, we let him know more of what he can offer to his customers — more than what the customer is asking for,” says Aaron Friedman, owner and CEO of Signarama in Santa Rosa, Calif. “It’s an added value that means more money for the photographer, and his customers get the photos they want, ready to hang on the wall.”

Assembled GOframe stretcher system

At his busy shop, Friedman recently added the GOframe stretcher bar system to his canvas wrap production. Being located in wine country, a lot of his customers are looking for wine-related décor canvas wraps, like the one pictured above.

“The GOframe has done very well for us,” says Friedman, whose team used to hand-stretch all their canvas. “It’s way easier, faster, more efficient and requires less labor.”

Using an HP Latex 300 series printer, Friedman’s shop can print up to 60-inch canvases and meet his photographer customers’ demands for great photo quality, bright color and a consistent wrapped finish with clean edges. “They come in and ask for museum quality final product, and this canvas gets pretty close,” Friedman says. “Plus, it’s half the cost of an archival canvas.”

To discover more canvas options, download The Colorful World of Canvas.

Photo Panels. As an alternate to canvas wraps, LexJet also offers LexJet Sunset Professional Photo Panels that provide a quick and easy way to finish a photo that’s ready to hang. Simply print onto a photo paper, such as LexJet Sunset Photo Canvas Paper 230g, and remove the adhesive on the face of the photo panel and press the photo in place.

With black-trimmed edges and pre-drilled holes in the back of the panel, they’re ready to hang with a clean, modern look. To see how easy they are to assemble, watch this video.

New York Film Academy photography student portraits

Print-N-Stick. For a larger-than-life option, LexJet Print-N-Stick Fabric delivers photo-quality images that can be blown up for giant portraits, like those created by students from New York Film Academy, or even entire wall murals. As a less expensive and less cumbersome way to display their end-of-term work, the students printed their final portraits on Print-N-Stick, peeled off the liner and stuck them on the wall.

“The profile was great, and the color was really true, so that’s what we completely switched over to,” says David Mager, chair of the Photography Department.

LexJet Print-N-Stick Fabric is a super-versatile product that can be applied to walls, windows, metal and even floors. It’s smooth finish and high quality inkjet coating delivers the richest colors compared to other self-adhesive, printable fabrics in the market.

Sunset Photo Metallic Paper face-mounted to one-inch acrylic

Face-mounted to Acrylic. Another eye-catching photo finishing option is face-mounting to acrylic, which the creative pros at Bumblejax have perfected. After printing the photo on LexJet Sunset Photo Metallic Paper, Bumblejax adheres it to the acrylic using LexJet CrystalClear Permanent Adhesive.

“We really see an incredible ‘pop’ from the Sunset Metallic Paper when it is face-mounted to acrylic, especially in a gallery setting with proper lighting,” says Bumblejax’s Corey Dwinnell.

Read more about Bumblejax’s success here.