Sign & Digital Graphics

Start Here October '19

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36 S T A R T H E R E 2 0 1 9 Sublimation Utilize Product Templates A product template is a digital file that contains the outline of an imprint- able product's shape. Available for essentially all sublimatable products in a variety of file formats to ensure compatibility with your graphics soft- ware package, templates are a must in each step of the production process: designing, printing, and pressing. Editor's Note: Check out the sidebar titled Sublimation Graphics Software Basics on page 34 for more information on software. Speeding up the design process: Utilizing a product's software template speeds the design process by allowing the graphic artist to work with the actual shape of the product. Positioning photographs, graphics, and text properly the first time saves a tremendous amount of time by pro- viding an on-the-screen view of what the finished product will look like. This is especially helpful when designing uniquely shaped items such as door hangers and neckties. Reducing ink usage: During the printing pro- cess, only the product's image area is printed onto the paper. This lowers the cost of printing by reducing the amount of ink used to print each transfer. Reducing prep time and pressing errors: Overall pressing time and pressing errors are greatly reduced due to the ease and confidence of align- ing/securing the printed transfers to the blank products. Don't Let Your Opinions Get In The Way Of Making Money Part of being in the sublimation busi- ness is deciding which products to sell. I find that many veteran sublimators offer traditional prod- ucts such as mugs and plaques but are unwilling to expand when new ones such as curved acrylic and tapered drinkware are introduced. They are either stuck in a comfort zone or use their own personal tastes to pick and choose what they offer. Just because you don't like a product has nothing to do with what your clients want. Editor's Note: Get some ideas on new substrates to add to your offering using the sidebar titled Best Sublimation Substrates for the Beginner on page 34. If you sell shirts, sell complementary socks and sleeves. For drinkware, sell coasters. If you have your client's artwork, it is easy to put it on one or more different products. Try out new products to gauge interest and keep your product offerings fresh. 3 A product template is a digital file that contains the outline of an imprintable product's shape and is especially helpful for unique-shaped items such as door hangers. (Images courtesy Condé Systems) 4 For no-surprise color matching, print a color chart from within your graphics pro- gram and transfer it to a variety of products. This lets you know exactly how each color will look on each product once transferred. (Image courtesy Condé Systems)

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