Storefronts that Sell with Prints on Perforated Window Vinyl

Printing window graphics

Award-winning studio photography deserves to be front and center, and when appropriate, larger than life. And so it is at Peters Photography, a family-owned studio with three locations in Ohio – in Dublin, London and Centerville – and a national reach through the recognized expertise of its photographer crew.

The photographers – which include founders and owners Larry and Karen Peters and their daughter and son-in-law Janine Peters Killian and Brian Killian – capture the essence and personality of their subjects through the breadth of their studio work, including families, babies, children, high-school seniors and individual portraiture.

Printing window graphics on perforated window filmTheir largest and most visible studio, with plenty of window space facing a roundabout that runs by it, is at the Dublin location. It’s the perfect spot, with all the right ingredients, to showcase the studio’s top-notch, colorful work.

Lab manager Matt Baxter printed the latest round of images chosen by the photographers on LexJet Aqueous Perforated Vinyl (70/30) with the studio’s Canon iPF8100 to fit within the approximately 27″ x 54″ window panes that run alongside the studio, and the front door.

Brian Killian installed the panels, some of which were set up as individual images within each pane while others are one large image encompassing all three panes. “We make sure we cut out the right gaps so they stay proportional and don’t look out of whack,” says Baxter.

Baxter adds that the images have been up for about a month and are no worse for the wear, despite the see-sawing early spring weather in Ohio from hot to cold and dry to wet.

“We’ve been doing a lot of promotional printing lately,” says Baxter. “And with the Canon printer we haven’t had to build our own custom profiles like we used to. With the LexJet profiles, the Canon plug-in and driver, everything prints out the way it’s supposed to, it looks right and we’re not guessing.”

The LexJet Aqueous Perforated Vinyl makes the images opaque from the outside looking in, but people inside the studio can see out. The vinyl also provides a tinting effect that keeps glare down inside the studio’s lobby as well.

To keep things fresh the images will be replaced with another set in another six months or so. Until then, the promotional images will play their part, drawing people in from the street to the studio and building the Peters Photography brand.

For more information about Peters Photography, go to And, to see what makes this dynamic studio tick, go to

A Welcome Sight: Promoting Georgia and Photography at the Border

Photo art prints on canvas

Veteran professional photographer Lee Cathey, who owns Multi-Image Studio in La Grange, Ga., will be hanging his work at a Georgia welcome center near the Alabama border this week. The welcome center, located down the road in West Point, was looking for unique photography to bring added interest to all things Georgia.

Photo art inkjet printing on canvasWith a combination of scenic Georgia shots – including nighttime and aerial views – Cathey answered the call from the welcome center. Well known in the area for his 30-plus years of commercial work, Cathey was the logical choice to add visual punch to the center.

Cathey chose about ten images, which he calls “chamber of commerce type photos,” and printed them on LexJet Sunset Select Matte Canvas with his Canon iPF8100. “It’s kind of crafty with the half-inch wrap on float frames I made for this project,” he says. “And, it helps promote the welcome center and my own giclee printing services and photography. It’s all about networking and if I pick up a customer or two it’s a good thing.”

Reproducing fine art photos with inkjet printing on canvasThe prints were finished with LexJet Sunset Gloss Coating and Sunset Satin Coating. At times, he says, he mixes the two coatings – 70 percent Gloss and 30 percent Satin – to get just the right sheen he’s after. “You get a little bit of contrast that way and the prints look nicer to me,” he adds. “I had just been spraying with aerosols before and I wasn’t real happy with that. It’s more economical, it looks better and it’s more consistent with the Sunset coatings and the sprayer. I’ve been tickled with the Sunset products.”

The canvas wraps range from about 35 inches wide to 16” x 20”. Most of the prints are in the 20” x 24” range. “I’ve got about ten prints and I’m debating whether or not I have space for that many,” says Cathey. He’ll find out on Thursday when he hangs the prints at the welcome center. His exhibition is expected to run through Dec. 31.

Documenting the Emperor’s River in Multiple Moments and Big Prints

When photographer Philipp Rittermann talks about his work, there’s one thing that becomes clear almost right away: passion. A passion that took him on multiple trips to China in the last two years, traveling and photographing the Grand Canal, creating an astounding collection of massive photos in his Emperor’s River project.

“It’s a self generated project that came about when I was invited to show my work in China at a photography biennale. That was my first excuse to go to China; I hadn’t had an opportunity before then. I decided that if I was going to go, I needed to educate myself about it. I came across multiple references to the Grand Canal and it seemed like something to follow. It’s just such a huge country and the Grand Canal would help define my direction; rather than wandering aimlessly for years, and still not really scratching the surface,” Rittermann explained.

The Grand Canal is the world’s largest water project, the beginnings of which date all the way back to 460 BC. “It’s historically, culturally, militarily and economically hugely important in China’s history,” Rittermann said in explaining his decision to follow the river for a combined 10 weeks. “I also figured it would take me through large cites, small cites, rural areas and everything in between, and that this would reveal a pretty comprehensive socio-economic cross section of eastern China today.”

Rittermann wanted to achieve something in these images that he is often fascinated with in photography. “It’s about how photography makes time visible in a way that I can’t experience it,” he explains, describing the technique of capturing and expanding a single moment in time.

Now is very short and it’s continuously moving, so we, as humans, can never see multiple moments next to each other; we are always in the Now. So by photographing multiple moments, and then putting them together I feel like I can open the curtain a little wider,” he says. “I make multiple passes across these scenes. If there is something interesting happening I might take three or four or five frames in that particular area of the image, and then later figure out which moment I want to reveal. It allows me to composite a time-picture of that scene.”

The collection of images is currently on display at The Museum of Contemporary Art in San Diego. “It was actually surprising that they wanted to show it. They were the last ones on my list in terms of probability, but the first ones in terms of desirability,” he explains.

In a few weeks the images will make their way to a gallery in San Francisco. “I would like it if the framed work never came back to me for storage,” Rittermann explained with a laugh, “because they are huge.”

It’s not an understatement either; the printed images are huge, some as long as 10 feet. But what’s even more striking about the photos, all printed by Rittermann on his Canon iPF8100 on LexJet Sunset Fibre Satin, is the incredible detail in each print.

Photographing China“They’re made out of multiple images which are fused together, so there really is a lot of resolution there. You can get your face right up to them and there is a lot to see. They don’t fall apart when you get up close,” he says. “It’s something I really enjoy about photography… That you can climb into an image and go for a walk in it. My requirement for myself is that I don’t put something on a wall that doesn’t hold up to that kind of scrutiny. There is nothing worse than walking up to an image that looks great at a distance, and goes to mush right in front of your eyes. That’s a letdown.”

Fine Art Banners with Sunset Select Matte Canvas

You may remember Vickey Williams of Mountain Dreamworks in Ketchum, Idaho, and her recent Sagebrush Cowboy Ball project. That’s not the only interesting application she’s been working on. Recently, Williams has been using Sunset Select Matte Canvas in a unique way: to print outdoor fine art photo banners.

Printing fine art banners on canvasWilliams first started using Sunset Select Matte Canvas as a fine art banner when the supplier she’d been using for cotton and silk fabrics went out of business. “I had to find another solution and I started playing around with the canvas and thought, ‘What would happen if I splashed water on this untreated canvas?’ That’s when I started experimenting with it.”

She needed to know that whatever material she used would hold up against the unpredictable Idaho climate. “Now mind you I live at about 6,000 feet,” Williams explained, “So we get quite a bit of snow. We have seasons with rain, snow, sun, wind, dust and ice… we get everything here.”

To make sure the canvas would hold up and maintain the look of the photos printed on it Williams put the canvas through a long test. “I started by cutting printed test strips and hung them outside,” she explained. “Throughout the year I didn’t see any fading and the archival ink on my Canon iPF8100 did not run. Without any protective coating the ink would start to come off if I rubbed the canvas when it was wet, but knowing most of the photo banners would not be handled I thought this just might work.”

Williams decided to sew hems for pole pockets and went to a local welding company to fashion a 12″ x 12″ x 1″ steel plate with a loop in the middle for attaching the banner wire. “This added a final touch to secure the banners in place and added a rugged rustic look to our fine art photo banner presentation,” says Williams.

Williams wasn’t the only one pleased with the outcome of the banners. Her customers really seem to like them too, though she admits they may not work for everyone. “I can’t compete with the people who do vinyl, but the people who want a canvas look, and a more organic look, are not only fine with it, they love it.”

AW Artworks Puts the Finishing Touch on its Restored and Revitalized Print Studio

Renovating and restoring an inkjet print studio

Last time we checked in with AW Artworks, owner Andy Wredberg was in the midst of a big restoration job on the print shop’s new facility, housed in an old bank building originally constructed in 1899. The point of AW Artworks’ move and subsequent months of painstaking restoration was to put AW Artworks front and center in Sun Prairie, Wis.

This weekend, AW Artworks officially opened for walk-in business at the new location. Previously, says Wredberg, the sign on the door said, “By Appointment Only,” and the door was locked while the crew restored the building and produced prints for its clients behind those closed doors.

Printing a banner for a studio opening
AW Artworks printed this banner on LexJet TOUGHcoat Water-Resistant Polypropylene to let passersby know they're open for walk-in business and to be very clear about everything the studio can do for them.

Wredberg decided to go ahead and do a “soft” opening in conjunction with a block party this past weekend. Now that AW Artworks is open, the next step is a grand opening with a reception, give-aways and prizes to really get the community involved and bring more attention to the shop.

“Before, when we had just a few canvas prints in the window, people who passed by thought we were a photo studio. Now people know what we’re all about since the banner and the A-frame sign out front tells them exactly what we do: Turn your photos into canvas, graphic design, banners, custom home décor, trade show displays and so forth,” explains Wredberg.

The banner (pictured here) was printed on LexJet TOUGHcoat Water-Resistant Polypropylene, a material Wredberg describes as striking the perfect balance of quality and economy for that application. “We love it as an inexpensive but very sharp-looking banner,” says Wredberg.

Finding that balance is exactly how Wredberg approached the renovation of the building for the print studio. The sweet spot Wredberg was after could be described in one word: Approachable. The studio’s overall look should appeal to those looking for top-notch reproductions and those who need commercial work done quickly.

“My thinking behind this place is to bridge the gap between a ritzy, high-end art gallery and Kinko’s. I want it to be approachable, but I don’t want it to look like a cheap, fast place since we’re focusing on high-quality materials and prints. We’ll offer banners, signs and trade show displays, but at the same time, if you’re an artist or photographer we’re second to none for quality,” explains Wredberg.

Renovating a large format inkjet printing studioJudging by the photos from the newly-renovated studio, and the feedback from the first walk-in potential customers, AW Artworks succeeded in its mission. Wredberg also decided to make his two Canon 44-inch printers (an iPF8300 and an iPF8100) a focal point of the main studio area.

“We intentionally put the printers in the front room so you can see them in action. Whenever someone sees a massive print coming off these printers they stop and gawk. That’s part of us bridging the gap between those two worlds,” says Wredberg.

Another finishing touch – beyond the detailed restoration of the building’s original marble and wood floors and ceiling accents – includes Victorian-style picture rails and a plethora of canvas prints that hang from them.

“It looks sharp and is very functional for wall displays. It’s a snap to put the picture rails up, hang them level and space them evenly,” says Wredberg. “Pretty much everything in here is printed on Sunset Select Matte Canvas, plus we just tried some of the Sunset Reserve Matte Canvas and loved the texture of that for art prints; I like the tooth it has on it. We’ll do some mounted prints on Sunset Photo eSatin and we still have a few finishing touches on the studio to complete for the grand opening.”

Breaking the Mold with Large Format Inkjet Printing

Printing and framing at American MouldingIt wasn’t a stretch for Melbourne, Fla.-based American Moulding to re-direct its business into large format inkjet printing, but it did break the mold and continues to do so with great success. American Moulding started out about 12 years ago as a distribution company for picture frame moulding and supplies. When the economy took a turn for the worse, American Moulding’s primary distribution business took a hit.

Rather than mourn the decline, American Moulding took a proactive approach and decided to start printing. Since that time three years ago the company has tripled its revenues, outpacing its original picture framing distribution business model. In other words, American Moulding’s product line has shifted almost entirely to large format inkjet printing for artists, corporations and interior decorators, while leveraging its previous expertise in framing by offering a fully finished, high-quality product.

“We do art reproduction and framing, so now it’s the total package. We had brand equity in the American Moulding name and we didn’t want to lose that with companies we were already working for. We have one large client who helped drive that for us. We did most of the framing for their art galleries and other venues. The door opened up for us when they asked if we could print a small background for them, so we bought an Epson 3800. Then the requests came in more frequently and that’s when we expanded into a 24-inch [Epson 7880] and two 44-inch printers [a Canon iPF8100 and an Epson 9900],” says Chris Bryant, owner of American Moulding. “Cutting out the distribution business was nerve-wracking at first, but we’ve been able to exceed our revenues. We’ve managed to grow it and continue to grow it by introducing new products and becoming more of a credible source with our clients. Every day and every week we continue to win more business.”

Printing fine art and photographyAnother key component of American Moulding’s success has been customer service. Bryant has a simple explanation for American Moulding’s customer service philosophy: “We become an extension of who they are.”

Bryant explains that their concept is to be on call as if they were in the office next door, ready for action at a moment’s notice. “That way, if there’s a problem, they can call us as if we were right there on their property with them. The more we do that the deeper we ingrain ourselves in the fabric of what they do, so it makes us more in line and in tune with their philosophies.”

The most difficult part of the transition to large format printing was getting the workflow and color management issues down pat. The team at American Moulding buckled down, learned the software and utilized the technology to its fullest so that it was print-ready almost from day one.

“That was probably the biggest adjustment – making sure we had a critical eye in evaluating the art and colors and that we were getting it right every time. We’re still learning every day, but we did a good job from the beginning. The feedback we were getting from our clients was that we were getting it right the first time, rather than having to color proof it two or three times to get it right. They started having confidence in what we were doing and began shifting more work our way. We have a three-person signoff on each piece of art we produce just to evaluate color,” explains Bryant. “We went from printing small jobs of one or two prints to running limited editions. Now we have about 150 pieces of art that are still active and it grows every day.”

Building a large format inkjet printing business
Chris Bryant and Heather Bailey of American Moulding. Their customer service philosophy is simple: To be an extension of their client's business.

Bryant adds that keeping up with the latest technology and printable media has played a crucial role in the company’s growth. American Moulding is not afraid to experiment and try new media out, much to the delight of their clients.

“Canvas always comes out great, but I like playing with the fine art and watercolor papers. We also love the Sunset Photo Metallic Paper and the artists we work with love it as well. We don’t put it on everything and overuse it, but the art we print on it just jumps off the paper and the artists jump at the chance to work with it. Some paint specifically for that paper,” explains Bryant. “LexJet is constantly introducing new products to us, and they have lot of the same philosophies we have in customer service. They touch base regularly to learn more about who we are and what we do so that they’re able to give us new product ideas to effectively move our business forward. Our customer specialist, Rob Finkel, and his team have been awesome and helped us get over some of the learning curve. LexJet has been a catalyst in our growth.”