From China, Hongsam Digital Science & Technology’s JETALL is a water-based, eco-solvent ink that can be used for fine art printing. At drupa, it was demonstrated on an Epson Stylus Pro7908. The firm also manufacturers four-, six-, seven-, eight-, 11-, and 12-color pigment inks for Canon, HP, Mimaki, Mutoh, Roland, and other wide-format printers. Their water-based structure also can prolong printhead life, Hongsam says.
The first solvent printer from Epson, the Stylus Pro GS6000, also was shown in Germany. This model, with a printing width of 64 inches, is equipped with the capacity to produce water and UV resistant, scratchproof, and quick-drying prints for indoors and out. When printing with special solvent inks, no VOCs are said to be set free, because the inks are based on ecological solvents where no additional ventilation is needed.
Redefining and Monetizing Fine Art Reproduction
In Switzerland, an artist has boosted profit margins of her fine art reproduction business by using the HP Artist Solution for Nikon. It all started when an art dealer approached Ines Hulftegger with what seemed like an impossible task: Create a digital reproduction that captures the rich gold and silk details of an ancient Japanese panel.
Hulftegger, an artist herself and founder of IN_EX design GmbH, was up for the challenge. Her company uses the HP Designjet Z3200 Photo Printer along with the HP Artist Solution for Nikon to create high-quality digital fine art reproductions. Fine art reproduction systems and solutions powered by HP Artist Software complement the 12-ink printing capabilities of the Z3200 series and HP Media portfolio.
“Prior to having the HP Artist Solution, we wouldn’t have thought it was possible for an inkjet printer to produce anything close to a true representation of these details,” Hulftegger said. But to the delight of her and her client, the Designjet Z3200 reproduced all of the colors with stunning accuracy. “The yellow color, in particular, reflected exactly as if it were gold,” she noted. “The quality of the print was amazing.”
Fewer Steps, Greater Value
Hulftegger founded IN_EX design eight years ago as a platform for selling her own artwork and a commercial opportunity to produce digital reproductions for other artists. She saw the profit potential in fine art reproduction, but said that until she invested in the HP Designjet Z3200, the steps required to produce a quality print were time-consuming and wasteful.
Hulftegger and her team spent a lot of time manipulating images and making multiple prints to ensure accurate color. The Designjet Z3200 and the HP Artist Solution for Nikon streamlined the process significantly. The HP Artist Solution for Nikon includes the HP Designjet Z3200, the Nikon D3X or D3 camera, and a special edition of the ErgoSoft StudioPrint photo RIP software, powered by HP Artist Software technology.
Hulftegger explained, “This new streamlined approach ultimately translates to cost savings and more time to process jobs, positively impacting our bottom line.”
Getting it Right the First Time
To create a fine art reproduction, Hulftegger first photographs the original artwork and background. She then uses the HP Artist Solution for Nikon to evaluate the color accuracy, adjust colors as necessary, and creates a final print.
The HP Artist Solution for Nikon and HP Designjet Z3200 ensure that the final print accurately re-creates what the camera captures. The Z3200 makes it easy to profile and calibrate colors with its embedded X-rite spectrophotometer. And, it features 12 HP Vivera pigment inks, including the HP Quad-black ink set, for true neutral grays and nuanced color reproduction.
“The software automatically corrects the light and colors, so we only need to print once,” Hulftegger says. “Plus, the HP Vivera pigment inks enable us to create prints with exceptional longevity and outstanding color accuracy.”
This seamless integration from camera to final image means fewer unnecessary prints along the way. Hulftegger says this efficiency has lowered her operating costs by 30 percent to 40 percent, which means higher profit margins. “There is no mistaking that this solution has improved the efficiency of our workflow, and IN_EX design GmbH is reaping the benefits,” said Hulftegger.