Friday, October 31, 2008

Happy Haloween!

The season is upon us for ghosts and gouls, candied apples, and hot cocoa! Tonight children large and small will dress-up and scare our socks off. We thought we would share some of our scary moments here in the office!

Here's Jim (designer)answering your questions in his straight jacket.

Ethan's (designer) preparing your files in style!

Slim Kyle (designer) is being snappy and snazy in his custom costume.

Okay, so they really aren't scary, but we thought we would let you in on the MegaPrint world, and extend our wishes for you and yours to have a Safe and Happy Haloween.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Snow Flurries and Trail Signs

After all, it is New Hampshire, and we like to hike! We've just introduced vinyl signs for outdoor applications like trail signs. They are durable and affordable, but the best part is that they are easy. We can print them from any of the common programs, even Microsoft Word and PowerPoint. Send us your files, and you'll have your signs back in less than a week.

The fall weather, with winter close on our heels, has made us all appreciate the crisp fall air and the amazing leaves we have had this season. Today we had our first snow flurry in Holderness, NH. It was just a dusting, but enough to get our skiers excited.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Graphic Design Tips of the Week!

When you are setting up your files for us, here are some tips from our design team:

1. Image quality must be a minimum of 72dpi at full size, and doesn’t need to
be higher than 100dpi at full size.
2. When using InDesign and Quark, remember to do a “collect for output” and
create a sitx file for upload.
3. Photoshop files should be flattened unless we request otherwise. Saving as an LZW compressed tif will reduce the size of the file to be transmitted, often by as much as 2/3. Some Photoshop effects are lost by flattening, however, so proof carefully!
4. Outline all fonts in InDesign and Illustrator
5. Save PDF’s as “press quality” as this produces a high-resolution image. Some of the newer versions of Acrobat give you the opportunity to choose a resolution, we suggest 100 dpi.

Alternatives to Framing

When companies want a display that will line their halls for more than a year, we usually print with UV ink, mount on gatorboard, and we often add our edge trim.

Edge trim protects the edges of a gatorboard mounted print and gives the look of a thin frame. It can be substantially less expensive than framing, which for large prints can start at $150. We can also add the wire at the back for hanging. In the end you have a print with a frame and a hanger wire for less than the traditional frame would cost you.

At the right is a menu we printed on gatorboard with matte laminate and edge trim. This particular job also featured channels so that the customer could slide in new items and prices when they changed.

Retail Displays That Say Something!

Retail displays are a great way to bring attention to your store. We do displays from small signs for countertops to large vinyl banners for outside the building.

Every business is unique and we understand that signs representing your company need to be as unique as your business. Some of our favorite jobs have been those where we have designed something unusual just for a special store.

Our graphic designers have wide experience in graphic design, art, and performing arts! The individuality of the designers makes our team stronger and a lot of fun.

You may want to check out this article about window displays. It makes some excellent points to think about for any retailer.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Going Green!

MegaPrint Inc. is going green! Our soy based inks, and partially recycled paper; along with our group effort here in the office to recycle everything we can, has made us all more conscious of how we are impacting the planet.

Here are some images of the recycling we are doing, and our team members having fun doing it.

On the top, Stacey loads up paper bundles and lunchroom recycling. On the bottom, Joyce drops a paper bundle down the recycling hatch at the Plymouth recycling center.

We understand that it is important to be conscious of how we impact the earth, and we are doing everything we can to keep it clean.

Here is a link to a great site for recycling tips for home and the office.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

New Retractable Banner Stand Passes the Test!

To retract or not to retract, that is the question. With a wide variety of banner stands out there today it is hard to know which will be:

1) Easiest to use
2) Lightest to carry around and ship
3) Most durable.
4) Easiest to change out the graphic

We offer two banner stands, basically Cadillac and Chevy versions. Both work well and have a poly film banner that will not curl or "canoe" like vinyl banners because the material doesn't stretch. Both are very easy to set up and take down.
Our premium stand uses a light blocking poly film that will not show the shadow of the pole, our economy stand uses a thinner material. We can send you a replacement banner for our premium stand, and you can change it out. We will need our economy stand back to change the banner. Finally, our premium stand is a battleship, the economy stand is, well, an economy stand. It is lighter and easier to carry around, though!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Window Cling

Window cling is one of the new items here at MegaPrint Inc. Our opaque vinyl window cling is great for storefront windows, glass case displays, or any other smooth-as-glass surface.

Shown is a window cling we printed recently for a retailer. The great thing about cling is that it comes off the window cleanly and can be used over and over.

The trick for applying window cling is to spray the window with water (or Windex), and then start at one end wiping it flat. The water allows it to slide a little on the glass, and you'll be able to get it flat with no bubbles at all.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Beautiful in Boston

I spent the weekend in Boston, watching the Head of the Charles regatta and doing a little shopping in Harvard Square. There, big as life at the EMS store were a number of prints we had done for them. It's always fun to see your work out there in the real world!

Our prints are great for retailers, and you see a lot of beautiful large format work in today's retail environment. The tricky part is how will they be fixtured, and we can help! We have a complete selection of hangers and other doodads to help you. Best of all, you can call us and we'll walk you through deciding what will work best.

Friday, October 17, 2008

Odd Jobs

Sometimes we get jobs in that are very different from the usual research poster, full-size cutout, or trade show booth. One such odd job was an oversized jigsaw puzzle we did in 2007.

The puzzle was 5’ x 15’ and each piece was somewhere around 5” x 6”. Our entire crew had to pitch in to help with finishing. It was a paper print on gatorboard with a glossy laminate on top, plus all that cutting, trimming, etc. The total puzzle piece count was 509.

One of the things we try to do at MegaPrint, Inc. is print quality work fast. This job took us about 5 days with all 19 of us working on it. We created the pattern over the picture that The Grand Canyon University provided. Here is the puzzle.

The puzzle was created as a teamwork project for The Grand Canyon University. 509 people gathered and each person got one piece of the puzzle. It had become a teamwork project for us as well. Just as we had worked together to create it, they worked together to reconstruct this enormous puzzle.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Menu Boards

Menu boards are one of the exciting things that we do here at MegaPrint Inc. Our talented team of graphic designers create menu boards for a number of companies including Team Disney, several Universities, and corporate lunch rooms. Here are a few that we really had fun with.

Plymouth State University recently asked us to create a custom design for their vegan menu.

This board has insert pockets for weekly changes or specials!

This one is being used as a banner over the vegan station!


This is one we did for L.L. Bean Corporate.

Menu boards can be mounted on a number of materials, although gatorboard is one of our most popular options due to its lightweight, and durable construction. Crystal laminate, or matte laminate are both excellent options for laminating your menu board to protect it from the elements, and eliminate glare from lighting. Custom designed menu boards are a great way to make your company stand out!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Peak Foliage Season in NH

One of the things that we enjoy most about living in New Hampshire is fall foliage season. It's peak right now, and we have just had one of the nicest Columbus Day weekends in memory.

We thought we'd share a few stunning pictures taken by Bob Misuraca, one of our graphic designers, who is also an accomplished photographer. The top picture is Holt's Ledge, the bottom picture is taken at Wellington State Park on Newfound Lake.

If you ever have the opportunity to come to New Hampshire, do it in the middle of October! Stop by and see our shop, too. We are right off I93 about an hour north of Concord.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Crystal Laminate and Trade Show 101

We often get phone calls about updating trade show materials. One of the items we recommend using, and generally get the most questions about, is Crystal Laminate. Crystal Laminate is a heavy laminate that has a textured “pebble” like surface. The benefit of this textured surface is that it eliminates glare from lighting in a tradeshow setting, but allows the colors to pop in the same way a gloss laminate would.

We use this laminate for pop-up booth panels, for graphics that will velcro to the carpet face of show booths, and for tabletop displays. Crystal laminate is heavy enough to be durable, but still flexible enough to roll for shipping and storage. The Crystal Laminate will protect your print, and be beautiful in your trade show booth!
Visit our site to read more about Trade Show 101, tips for those new to trade shows.

Monday, October 13, 2008

We Have Wallpaper!

Wallpaper is an exciting new addition for us. Our wallpaper has a suede finish that breaks glare and gives you a durable, attractive installation. We have done lobbies that show off a company’s products, a sales room with historical company pictures, even a large display of student art in a school. Our solvent printed wallpaper is attractive and a durable as any store-bought wallpaper. Many people call us and wonder how they put it up. Applying our wallpaper is as easy as applying standard wallpaper, although it is not pre-pasted.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Big Outdoor Vinyl Banners

This is an example of the dramatic results that can be achieved with full color printing of outdoor banners. This one is currently outside of the New Hampshire Historical Society in Concord, which is doing an exhibit of the photographs of AMC photographer Ralph Larrabee.

We also printed several large format displays of the photographs for the exhibition. Historical photos are wonderful! We can print them in either black and white or sepia tone, and we can convert a black and white to sepia if you want that look. We produce large format photos on paper, and typically dry mount to board for framing. The photos for the exhibition were matte laminated and mounted on black gatorboard. They are stunning!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Fun with Figure Cutouts

We do a lot of full size cutouts of people. During the New Hampshire primary last fall, we did cutouts of all the presidential candidates for a national magazine, and it was a hoot! To the right is a picture of several of them. We had even more fun when we made an extra one of Barack Obama and left him lurking at the back of the shop. Visitors did a double take thinking he was visiting us!
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