Realise took to the sky returning to FESPA 2019 for a second year running!
FESPA is Europe’s largest international wide format professional printing exhibition. Over 700 exhibitors showcase their latest innovations and products in the digital and screen printing sectors for graphics, signage, décor, packaging, industrial and textile applications (FESPA).
Due to some very important busy business meetings this year, we couldn’t see everything on show, but here’s the cool things we did find…
Quick apply PVC wrap – any or everywhere!
On your marks, get set, GO!
There were quite a few companies showcasing their ability to wrap cars (that we could only ever dream of owning), which is quicker than a respray and gives the body an additional layer of protection from chips and scratches. You can get an entire side of a car wrapped in about 2 hours using top of the range printed PVC sheets and basically a hairdryer. Whilst vehicle wrapping isn’t exactly a new idea, we got quite excited about Wrapstock… This is not a bunch of hippies rapping in a field, but a digital platform that let’s anyone upload their own custom artwork to be applied anywhere in the world.
The process may not scream craftsmanship, but the result is pretty impressive. If it saves time and money too it’ll allow companies such as Avery Dennison (who own Wrapstock) to open up the market to everyone – clever. You’re bound to see more hot hatches booming around sporting ninja graphics, but would you consider converting your practical transport into a ‘dope family wagon ya’?
Spinning LED Hologram Device
This blew my mind!
This little device is impressive on it’s own let alone when you create a whole wall of these things! The LED are arrayed linearly on an arm. The arm rotates at a high enough velocity to generate a circular screen. When the LEDs are synchronised – when to illuminate, at what colour and for how long – an image is created that looks 3D.
Imagine walking past a shop window and suddenly you see Johnny Depp spraying aftershave on himself, in the middle of the desert gesturing for you to come in-store.
We wonder if we will see this become a widespread tool for product advertisement across retail and the food and beverage market. We hope we do but maybe less of JD!
Check out the video to see this in action
Huge 3D Printing
It’s big man!
We still really love the huuuge, massive 3D printer called… errr “Massivit“, obviously. And though this hasn’t changed since last year, we’re seeing many more examples of it being used – and who wouldn’t want to 3D print things like this for the office!
Large Format Printers
Large format printers are the unseen serious workhorses of the printing industry. These things churn out huge quantities of high quality large images for applications like bill boards and bus shelter adverts.
Thinking back to last year when we visited FESPA there doesn’t seem to be much movement in innovation across large format digital printers with many brands being quite comparable in design.
But this isn’t surprising. These are highly technical, expensive machines costing anywhere up to £1,000,000. Clearly ROI and therefore function is a primary requirement, with manufacturers historically competing on speed, quality of print, reliability, ease of maintenance and customer service.
The only new thing we saw this year was the Durst P5 (Durst didn’t exhibit here last year). This is a genuine effort at integrated design thinking in a large industrial machine. It has beautifully minimalist ‘Germanic’ styling, verging on the ‘stark’ – certainly the word friendly or approachable doesn’t come to mind when describing this thing! But the most important aspect this is one of the first machines to consider not only the pride of the owner, but also the experience of the operator, with a very usable interface, simplified ink handling and neat features like a handy place for tools. This is smart ground up hearts and minds thinking, that both aims to improve efficiency and turn the operators themselves into your sales force inside the customer walls.
Still, having witnessed the more elaborate, boastful stands of Durst, EFI, AGFA, Epsom, to name a few, there’s definitley room in the coming years for something more impressive to step into the limelight.