Awards & Engraving

October '16

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56 • A&E OCTOBER 2016 O ver the past several months, I've watched my family, friends and business associates voluntarily expose themselves to an almost constant barrage of over-stimulating images and sounds on their digital devices, at home and in public. Our brains are bombarded with millions and millions of visual pixels and ambient noise every day. The expo- sure begins with infants positioned by a smartphone, tablet or TV to be entertained or educated. Physiologically, our eyes and brains cannot process all the detail in a bitmap image. Our brain retains selective lines, colors and shapes for future reference and throws away the unnecessary data. The need for simplification is stimu- lated by the degree of stress in our lives. The minimalist art and photography movement after World War II and Korea was a natural response and escape from the horrors and anarchy of war. Today, much of our stress is self-imposed by an almost addictive use of the internet. Perhaps viewing a simplified photo or a minimalist advertisement will provide some occasional comfort and peace. COST EFECTIVE IMAGE EDITING AND DESIGN SOFTWARE Recently, many readers of this publica- tion indicated that they felt a strong need to build up their graphics design capabili- ties in order to remain competitive in a demanding market. There are many ways to accomplish this. You can provide addi- tional creative personnel and equipment, or you can update or replace the graphics software you currently own. Less dramatic, but often as effective, you can better inte- grate the software you already own and then add plug-in filters to add extensive capabilities that meet a new market need. This may be a good time to add Topaz Simplify 4 capabilities to your system. The cost for the upgrade described today is minimal and provides distinct benefits to laser engravers, sublimators, UV-LED print decorators, T-shirt designers, artists, photographers and many others. If you already own other compatible image pro- cessing software and CorelDraw, the cost to add Simplify 4 is only $40.00. A need for visual simplicity in an over - stimulated world By Bill Leek Single screen Topaz Labs Simplify 4 control panel. IMAGE COURTESY BILL LEEK SIMPLE IS BETTER

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