Esko, Sign & Display Group

EskoArtwork Offers Print Providers a Clear Choice, in 3D, at GRAPH EXPO

The print world is no longer solely dedicated to 2D projects, developed with 2D software solutions. At Graph Expo 2011, booth 435, EskoArtwork offers a Clear Choice, with very distinct, multi-dimensional reasons why it is the preference among commercial, packaging and sign & display print providers, for 3D design and production. To demonstrate this, EskoArtwork will be giving away 3D graphic materials explaining what they do -- and materials finished on a Kongsberg table.

EskoArtwork will demonstrate its Suite 10 portfolio of print and packaging pre-production software, featuring Studio, a unique set of tools for 3D packaging design made specifically for packaging artwork professionals. A highlight will be Studio Toolkit for Shrink Sleeves, a 2011 InterTech Award recipient, which can virtually predict the shrinking of graphics rather than utilizing a tedious manual process. In addition, EskoArtwork will demonstrate i-cut Suite, a collection of pre-production solutions that streamline the workflow for digital printing and finishing throughout the entire production process.

"By working in 3D, users of EskoArtwork solutions are not only able to operate more efficiently and profitably," said Mark Quinlan, President, EskoArtwork North America. "They are also able to work on more demanding and profitable work. Beyond workflow tools for commercial printers, EskoArtwork offers solutions to help commercial printers diversify to other areas of print. We offer a clear choice -- not only a way to work in 3D, but ways to add new dimensions to a print provider's business."

EskoArtwork Studio: creating artwork in 3D Why work in a flat world? Rather than working on 2D flats, designers can create projects in 3D -- designing with finished lines, adding graphics, and wrapping them around to see how they fit. Graphics can be designed on 3D materials using EskoArtwork Studio, a plug-in for Adobe ® Illustrator ® that puts interactive 3D display creation in the hands of the designer. Its 3D viewing environment lets designers see their artwork applied instantly on the screen. Studio also allows designers to create exciting 3D visuals to show to their clients, ranging from PDF files with 3D content, to movies, or virtual pack shots.

One of the featured options available within Studio is EskoArtwork's Studio Toolkit for Shrink Sleeves, the recipient of a 2011 Printing Industries of America InterTech(TM) Technology Award. Studio Toolkit for Shrink Sleeves creates artwork for shrink sleeves (labels placed around a package or packages and shrunk around them during production). 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. With Studio Toolkit for Shrink Sleeves, designers and prepress professionals can quickly create, test, analyze, communicate and produce designs with 3D visuals, without the need to conduct physical test runs.

Suite 10: Complete prepress solution

Automation is becoming an extremely important determinant of print provider profitability. Automation could be adding simple trapping programs to the prepress department, introducing advanced, 3D design software, or building full-fledged, sophisticated prepress production automation. In this economy, any way of increasing capacity without increasing resources is beneficial -- along with reduced errors and waste.

EskoArtwork's Suite 10 is a software solution for packaging prepress, 3D structural design and quality assurance, collaboration and automation, and color management. Visitors can follow demonstrations of the Automation Engine 10 and editor applications: ArtPro 10, PackEdge 10, DeskPack 10, ArtiosCAD 10 and Studio 10. Automation Engine 10 adds capabilities to the automation of repetitive tasks and takes more human interaction out of prepress production. This avoids mistakes and saves considerable time and money.

i-cut Suite production software for digital printing and finishing In the business of signs and displays, creativity generally breeds opportunities for more, higher-margin jobs. Typically, print providers who offer only two-dimensional displays can be caught bidding on projects that are more and more commoditized. These projects are often won on price, and the 'winner' is caught working on marginally profitable projects. Three-dimensional projects offer an entirely new world of possibilities for print buyers, and help the print provider to differentiate himself on creativity.

i-cut Suite is a collection of pre-production software for users of digital printers and/or digital finishing systems. The different modules of i-cut Suite provide sign and display companies extraordinary efficiency and productivity, regardless of the type, source and variety of incoming job information. i-cut Suite tackles all bottlenecks in a workflow, from preflighting PDF files, preparing graphics, creating layouts, to printing, and finishing in perfect registration.

Kongsberg i-XE10 Auto digital finishing system Materials finished during Graph Expo on a Kongsberg i-XE10 Auto, will be given to visitors on the booth. The Kongsberg i-XE10 Auto is equipped with a fully automated sheet feeder and off load stacker, specifically designed for finishing small-format, prototype, sample and short-run digital printed materials. The sheet feeder system automatically loads and places the printed materials on the table. The 'Pick and Place' automated stacker enables non-stop sorting, neatly stacking finished pieces. The system also automatically separates waste from the finished items. As a result, the machine can run virtually unattended, delivering significant savings on man-hours. The Kongsberg i-XE10 Auto opens opportunities for creative, new applications with irregular shapes or finishing structures, handling a maximum sheet size of 35" x 47" at a maximum speed of 52.5 inches/second.

Clear choices at partner booths

A number of influential printing industry partners will be participating with EskoArtwork, showing hardware and software solutions for a diverse range of print applications:

* PRISCO (Printers' Service), booth 201: Recently announced as a reseller of sign and display solutions to commercial printers, PRISCO will be demonstrating i-cut Suite and the Kongsberg i-XL 24 finishing table.

* Xeikon, booth 4027: The complete EskoArtwork Software Suite 10 will be on display, focusing on DeskPack and Studio. Along with the i-Cut Suite, the solutions will be shown helping to drive Xeikon digital presses.

* xpedx, booths 3601: On display will be complete production solutions, featuring Suite 10, a comprehensive portfolio of packaging, print and sign & display pre-production software, along with i-cut Suite and the Kongsberg i-XL 24 finishing table. Using a blue screen, they intend to take photos of visitors, place their images on a cereal box, print the boxes digitally, and cut them with the Kongsberg table.

"We look forward to showing print providers at Graph Expo how they can produce work more efficiently, while finding new, profitable services to offer," concludes Quinlan. "Our customer base throughout the Americas is growing because we offer a wide range of ways to help redefine and grow their businesses."

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