60 Minutes Photo Adds a Personal Touch to Photo Reproduction

In the 1970s, 60 Minutes Photo was the first one-hour photo development lab in West Palm Beach, Fla. Today, its ability to continue to offer innovative solutions with top-notch, in-person customer service has helped keep it in business during a time when online competition keeps heating up.

“Photo labs are becoming a dying breed,” says Renea Hutchings, who owns 60 Minutes Photo with her husband, Harold. “We’re more of a custom lab. People walk in and we have consulting where we can pull up their image and show them how it will look at a certain size. We work with both professionals and amateur photographers. Today, we’re one of the only all-around labs in Palm Beach County.”

The team pairs that customer-intimate approach with photo restoration work as well as up-to-the-minute photo reproduction trends, such as acrylic glass art, photo books, t-shirts, puzzles and metal prints, utilizing a variety of print technologies and substrates, based on their customers’ preferences.

The metal prints are particularly popular these days, Hutchings says, because of their sleek look and color reproduction. “If you have a really good shot, and we sublimate it on metal, we can get a really good print,” she says.

Her production team opts for Chromaluxe Photo Panels and LexJet InFuze Rigid Substrate Dye-Sub Paper for transferring the image to the metal. “Our guys like the InFuze better than the others they’ve used — it feels thicker and it’s more  porous, so it holds more ink when we sublimate it — it heats better and works better, especially with the photo panels,” Hutchings says.

When finishing the panels, the 60 Minutes team adds customized hanging fixtures with stainless steel buttons and sticks that are adhered to the back and can hold panels as large as 30-by-40 inches — and they deliver the final product within just a few days.

“We have some interior designer customers in Wellington, which is a huge horse-show world,” she says. “Their photos can be sublimated onto metal and hung outside on patios or in these multi-million-dollar horse barns. You can pretty much just squirt them with a hose and wipe them off. They’re pretty indestructible”

Another popular wall art item the team produces is photos printed Sunset Photo Metallic Paper and adhered to acrylic. “The image just pops,” Hutchings says. “It’s not like looking at a regular print.” She says portrait photographers, restaurants, sports bars and healthcare facilities are just a few of the types of customers opting for these two dynamic options.

To learn more about photo reproduction options, connect with a LexJet print specialist to day at 800-453-9538.

Customization in Wide-Format Printing: It’s Getting Personal(ized)

One of the earliest benefits of digital inkjet printing was the ability to create one-off, customized prints. Over the past two decades, that’s been a major selling point for printers offering banners, POP signage and trade show graphics, and it shows no signs of slowing down.

In fact, the digital print industry is branching out into many more market segments, thanks to improved print technology as well as new, innovative media and substrates, such as the personalized wallcovering printed with quotes, pictured above.

These new ideas and products, of course, are in response to increasing demands from graphic designers, brand owners, interior designers and consumers themselves who have seen customization in action with everything from canvas printed on demand to the mass-customization project: Share a Coke. Digital print technology allows print service providers to deliver smaller runs faster and with higher-quality results.

In the décor market, “there are more companies developing brands, which is increasing the competition and simultaneously creating a need for customization,” Rachel Nunziata writes in Big Picture magazine. “Product companies and manufacturers are also adopting in-house digital print – or outsourcing to print providers. This allows for product modifications of color or scale and smaller curated collections.”

This has been embraced in the label and packaging arena, as well, with digital printing giving smaller brands the chance to stand out. “The ability to customize packaging allows independent brands entree into the big leagues,” says Ralph Giammarco, VP of S-One Labels & Packaging in BXP magazine. “They can use personalization, tactile substrates and metallic finishes, do promotions around sporting events or holidays and enjoy super-fast turnaround.”

Check out some of the newest products now available that can help you delve further into customized wide-format printing:

Wrapping paper: Have your customers asked you to print photos for an upcoming wedding or birthday? Imagine using those pictures to customize wrapping paper, allowing them to personalize the gift-giving experience. If you have a latex printer or DesignJet production printer (Z6200 or newer), you could increase profitability by adding HP Satin Wrapping Paper to your product offering and help your customers make a splash at their next gift.

Wallcovering: For years, homeowners have spent countless hours in the wallpaper and paint departments at home improvement stores. With the ability to create custom wall coverings for your clients, you will help save them time and money as well as give them a way to design unique and personal bedrooms, boardrooms or commercial spaces. If you have either a latex or solvent printer, you can create custom wall murals with an array of options: the various textures of Vescom, HP PVC-free Wall Paper, which is certified for use in schools and hospitals when printed with the HP latex printers, and finally, the subtle textured options of Avery Dennison MPI 2600 Wall Film.

Art and décor: While printing images on photo papers is what initially put digital printing on the map, it’s time PSPs help customers understand all the options available for personalized art and décor. Canvas prints help your clients turn a great photo into a beautiful work of art. There are a variety of canvas products available for all printer technologies, including LexJet Sunset Select Matte Canvas for aqueous or LexJet Sunset by Fredrix Satin Canvas SUV for latex and solvent. If you have a dye-sub printer, ChromaLuxe Aluminum Photo Panels create stunning wall décor that will surely be a great conversation starter for homeowners and business owners, alike.

These are only a handful of options that are available to you to help you expand your product offering and keep your customers happy and always coming back to see what new and exciting things you can print for them.

If you have questions about any of these products or would like additional ideas on customization opportunities, visit LexJet.com or contact one of our sales specialists at 800-453-9538.

ChromaLuxe Panels for Décor: Personalization Is Always in Style

As the year starts to wane, décor magazine editors often start compiling chic trends anticipated for the upcoming year. However, for some designers – like Nate Berkus – a trend that is always relevant is individuality and personal style. In an interview with Atlanta Magazine in 2017, Berkus said your space “should remind you of the people you love and have loved, or the places that you’ve been or wish to go.”

What better way to follow Berkus’ advice than helping customers decorate their homes with meaningful art pieces created from images of family members or important places? With ChromaLuxe Aluminum Photo Panels or ChromaLuxe EXT, you can turn family portraits and vacation pictures into personalized art décor.

ChromaLuxe panels utilize dye-sublimation technology, which means the image is sublimated into the panel, so it is protected from indirect sunlight and other environmental factors indoors, while ChromaLuxe EXT panels have additional UV protection when the artwork is displayed in the outdoor elements.

With multiple display options available, ChromaLuxe prints make great housewarming or wedding gifts, are perfect décor for family reunions and provide a little piece of home for students who are looking to brighten up the drab walls of a college dorm room or apartment.

If you are interested in learning more about how to create dye-sub art, or any of the components of the process, including ChromaLuxe Aluminum Panels, Epson F-Series printers or LexJet InFuze paper, visit LexJet.com/dyesub or call 800-453-9538 and speak with one of our specialists today.

LexJet brandUP: A ChromaLuxe EXT Print Project That’s Really for the Birds

Felts Audubon Preserve is a hidden gem, tucked away among sprawling neighborhoods in rural Palmetto, Fla. Whether you’re a novice birder or an avid twitcher, Felts is the perfect place to visit when you want to unplug and see some of the spectacular species of birds and butterflies Mother Nature has to offer.

The Preserve land once belonged to Otis and Anita Felts, who owned and operated a family-run dairy farm. When Otis died in 2002, the family wanted the land to remain natural and free from future development, so the Felts family donated the 27-acre parcel to the Manatee County Audubon Society.

The property is beautiful and serene today, but back in 2002, it was in rough shape, and any improvements were always completed by volunteers. There are still no paid staff members at Felts, and original member Don Bansen remembers the first major project: volunteers cleared more than 300 tires out of the lake. “Everybody was covered in mud, it was a mess,” he says.

While tires in the lake no longer pose a problem, one issue occasionally plagues groundskeeper Fred Allen: vandalism. In the past, volunteers witnessed graffiti and spray paint on signs or broken display cases. Membership Director Lucette Wombacher believes mischief increases a little when school lets out for the summer.

“Everything is made possible by volunteers. They help keep the grounds looking good and Fred is instrumental in keeping the trails neat, so birders can walk through,” says Wombacher. “It’s important to have something that resists damage so we can stay focused on clearing invasive plants and trails rather than cleaning vandalized signs,” she says.

To make it easier for the volunteers at Felts, Heather Reece from LexJet suggested ChromaLuxe EXT metal photo panels with graffiti and fade-resistant properties that stand up to outdoor elements. The panels offer a glossy white finish, which makes them perfect for art and photo reproductions. The 0.045-inch metal panels have been tested to last three years or more outdoors without fading.

Visit Us at WPPI in Las Vegas; Get a Free Expo Pass

Heading to Las Vegas for WPPI, Feb. 26 – 28? If so, click HERE to claim your free passes, courtesy of LexJet and be sure to visit us at Booth #233 during the Expo.

When you stop by our booth, meet Roberto Venezuela, award-winning photographer and member of the Canon Explorer of Light program and see his world-renowned work. Venezuela and LexJet are partnering up for a contest where one lucky person will walk away a big winner simply by taking a picture! Stop by Booth #233 for all the details.

We also will have Canon PRO-Series printer and Fundy Design Software demonstrations to show how these tools can help you increase your profitability and offer unique applications to your clients.

Additional products on display include:

If you are interested in learning about Canon printers prior to the expo, you can attend the Canon PRO-Series webinar on Feb. 15 and receive additional savings on your printer purchase. LexJet technical director Michael Clementi be at WPPI to answer questions regarding the benefits of in-house printing.

Don’t forget to ask about our show specials on select LexJet Sunset media and how you can get a free copy of Fundy Software. We look forward to seeing you at the show!

For PPR Pix, ChromaLuxe Was the Answer for Customer Demand

When his customers started asking for ChromaLuxe metal photo panels, James Marks of PPR Pix in Atlanta, Ga., started researching how to add the colorful photo reproduction option to his operation. That also included the purchase of a new Epson SureColor F6200 dye-sublimation printer.

“We had been looking at getting into metal and there isn’t another local place in Atlanta to do metal printing,” Marks says. “Some of our customers had asked about it, and so we wanted to get our toes in there and jump.”