Faith can move mountains, but can it move a two-ton custom-built Cruse Scanner? Bob Lizza, owner of Lizza Studios, thought so and the results – a successful move – reinforced his faith.
But this isn’t really about moving a Cruse Scanner from one location to another, or even faith, per se. It’s really about vision: the vision of David Koral who recruited Lizza Studios to move to his eclectic location in Forty Fort, Pa., just outside of Wilkes-Barre, Pa., and the vision of Lizza Studios.
Years ago, Koral bought an old cigar factory, all 130,000 square feet of it. As the owner of UbU Clothing, the space was a perfect fit for manufacturing. It was also the perfect fit for a diverse range of commercial and residential tenants, from a fine dining establishment (Canteen 900) to doctors, lawyers, a yoga studio, lofts, and the fine art powerhouse Lizza Studios.
Lizza Studios effectively completes the space, bringing fine-art sensibility and the ability to brand and decorate it with a variety of inkjet materials from LexJet.
“I have found great use for the sticky papers Bob uses, like window treatments, door poles and elevator graphics. His ability to take images and reproduce them on all sorts of things is an incredible experience for me; it helps put my madness on the walls,” explains Koral. “I found an old album of photographs of this building prior to starting the work on it ten years ago, and he blew them up and put them on canvas. They’re clean and clear. People are coming from all over the East Coast corridor.”
The timing was perfect. Lizza loved his studio in rural Pennsylvania, but wanted to simplify his product offering and get closer to the East Coast action. It was Lizza’s combination of faith and vision that sparked the move following a discussion with Koral about bringing Lizza Studios into the fold.
“Dave is such a visionary and such a great guy. He has placed a flourishing oasis in a desert. Our space is spectacular, and we’re moving to this building to be one of the finest fine art sources in the Northeast. He found me and talked me into moving here, and once I got down here and saw what he was doing, it was clear that it needed to be where we moved,” explains Lizza. “Now I’m seeing the bigger picture of what we can bring to the Northeast related to fine art – from sculpture to paintings – and making that a real experience for people to come here with all walks of life.”
Lizza adds that their previous location was a hindrance of sorts for attracting high-end clients from the Northeast corridor and big cities like Philadelphia and New York City. Moreover, Lizza says it was time to concentrate on what really differentiates Lizza Studios: incredibly detailed and spot-on fine-art reproduction. Framing and other peripheral services would be left behind, while the scanning and printing equipment would travel to the new location.
“The biggest lesson for me was to keep an open mind. I was able to move to an area closer to the action and really get rid of the services that really weren’t going to fit the mold of what our business really is, rather than sticking with rigidity to an old decision,” says Lizza.
Ultimately, says Lizza, it boiled down to working with the right partners, from Koral down to the vendors Lizza chooses to work with, including LexJet.
“LexJet has been an amazing part of it all; they’ve given us all the leeway we need because they’re so focused on customer service, and LexJet products are the best because of the way the company does business,” says Lizza. “When I can call at 5:55 in the afternoon on a Thursday to get canvas the next day because I need the weekend to get it done, the customer service is in place to get it done with distribution centers everywhere. It all fits together.”
As far as the physical move itself, the most important component was safely transporting the two-ton, custom-built Cruse scanner. As usual, Lizza had faith that he would find the right people to do it, though the initial mover dropped out at the last minute.
“Moving the scanner was monumental. It’s a two-ton piece of equipment and there’s a risk that something will go wrong. There might be 100 scanners in the world like this, but this was custom built by hand; I have three lenses on my scanner, giving me a bit of an edge,” explains Lizza. “We thought we had a moving company in place, but they backed out because they had fear. We ended up finding someone just down the street from our new location who stepped in. They were flawless; we moved that scanner in four hours.”
Of course it took about four days to put it back together, and there was all the other printer equipment that needed to be moved – Lizza Studios’ Epson Stylus Pro 11880, 9900 and the low-solvent GS6000. Lizza plugged in quickly and soon made his mark all over the building with murals printed on Photo Tex Repositionable Fabric, LexJet Simple Flo Wrap Vinyl, and Simple Perforated Window Vinyl (60/40).