EskoArtwork is proud to announce that its Studio Toolkit for Shrink Sleeves is the recipient of a 2011 Printing Industries of America InterTech Technology Award. Since 1978 the InterTech Technology Awards sponsored by Printing Industries of America have honored the development of technologies predicted to have a major impact on the graphic arts and related industries. More than 80% of technologies that receive an award experience continued commercial success in the marketplace.
“We are very pleased and honored that, once again, an EskoArtwork product has received an InterTech Award. And, it is even more rewarding because Enfocus Switch—from a business unit of EskoArtwork—has also received an InterTech Technology Award this year,” comments Carsten Knudsen, EskoArtwork President and CEO. “However, most important to EskoArtwork is that these products have contributed to our customers’ successes. In the case of EskoArtwork Studio Toolkit for Shrink Sleeves, it remedies a very significant pain point for many package printers.”
“The judges immediately understood the innovations behind Studio Toolkit for Shrink Sleeves,” comments Mark Bohan, Vice President, Technology and Research, Printing Industries of America. “As one judge commented, ‘Have you ever tried to create shrink sleeves manually? It’s a nightmare. Studio Toolkit for Shrink Sleeves offers a dramatic change to a process that has been done inefficiently for many years.’ They were impressed with the math behind it, the ability to work well with asymmetrical packaging and the calculations to predict hue and color shift based on stretching.”
EskoArtwork Studio Toolkit for Shrink Sleeves: The perfect design and prepress tool for a growing packaging segment
The global $3 billion shrink sleeve market is growing at about 7% a year. EskoArtwork’s Studio Toolkit for Shrink Sleeves creates artwork for shrink sleeves (labels that are placed around a package or packages and shrunk around them during production). Designers and prepress professionals can quickly create, test, analyze, communicate and produce designs with 3D visuals, without the need to conduct physical test runs.
Designing and printing shrink sleeves is difficult, complex and labor-intensive process, involving a number of trial and error steps to get the design right, resulting in long lead times. Designers create grids on the shrink sleeve material, wrap it around the container, run it through a shrink sleeve tunnel, measure the distortion, and try to anamorphically size graphic elements based upon these measurements. The design is tested—often requiring plates and press time—and usually rerun many times. There’s the real potential of damaging brand integrity if the process is not handled correctly.
Studio Toolkit for Shrink Sleeves accommodates asymmetrical shapes and multipacks, and works in 3D from start to finish. It also works with a wide variety of substrates, taking into consideration the specific shrinking properties of each. With Studio Toolkit for Shrink Sleeves, it is no longer necessary to manually create test films. Designers aren’t working blindly in 2D, nor constrained. The pre-distortion can handle much more complex cases, resulting in more creative designs on more sophisticated containers, offering greater shelf appeal—and stronger sales. The 3D images accurately predicting the end-result can be used to approve designs faster and cheaper than making and shipping mock-ups. Less experienced printers can enter the sleeve label market.