In order to cover the industry effectively, during the year I do a lot of business travel. Sometimes it’s to trade shows and conventions, other times it’s for special press and analyst briefings—some under non-disclosure agreements—or even to open houses or other special events and meetings. The summer months, for me, are generally one of the quietest times in terms of travel. And honestly, after the whirlwind spring, I need that time to wind down and catch my breath.
But right now we’re on the cusp of the fall trade show season and once September gets underway, I’ll be on the road—and on the run—for about six weeks. But, can I let you in on a little secret? As tiring and all-consuming as business travel can be when it’s happening, I wouldn’t miss it for the world. I have to say that one of the most satisfying parts of my job is getting the chance to meet face-to-face with some of the people I work with—thanks to the various remote offices we have and the various marketing and public relations contacts that are scattered all over the world. I also have the opportunity to speak to Wide-Format Imaging’s readers and subscribers—which I love. There’s a certain energy you can only get from face-to-face meetings, and sometimes it’s only in those particular times that you get the inspiration for new ideas—or twists on old ones.
Of course, the first event on my agenda for the Fall is Print 09, one of the four international graphic arts trade shows. It’s paired with drupa, IPEX, and China Print on the other years. And while the majority of the exhibitors will not be focusing on the wide-format digital inkjet markets, there are quite a few—in the Wide-Format Pavilion and throughout the show floor—that will be releasing new products for the graphic arts market. In addition, Rap City is a special section focused on vehicle graphics, window clings, and wall murals. It will provide a hands-on experience for attendees who might be interested in learning more about these particular applications. I know, from personal experience a few years ago when I had the opportunity to volunteer as part of MACtac’s Garden in Transit program—a special partnership with Portraits of Hope—wrapping a car, even the flattest parts, isn’t as easy as the professionals make it seem. But, as difficult as it is to wrap a car, it’s also very rewarding to see it drive away when it’s all done. Rap City at Print 09 is sponsored by Mimaki, USA, Oracal USA and, GBC and I know I’ll make my way over there to try my hand at wrapping something again.
So, if you're planning on attending Print 09, make sure you take a look at the wide-format Showstoppers that appear in this issue starting on page 15 before you start walking the show floor. And while you’re in Chicago, make sure you stop in at booth #5266. I’ll be there and looking forward to meeting you.