Adds Herrera, "Studio delivers real-time visualization while you create a package design. When you make a box, you can see how it folds; you can see in 3D how the design works. It lets you see the printing effects and embossing."
Herrera plans to use the Esko technology during the program's Packaging 2 course, in which students learn to push the boundaries, as well as in the Packaging 3 course, which provides students with real-life working environments.
"This is the way the industry is heading," says Herrera. "Designers can quickly visualize what they create for the brand owner, making changes on the spot if necessary. Then, at the artwork level, everything is laid out as it is supposed to be. You can do the artwork and see the build in real-time in 3D."
No time like the present
In the meantime, excited to put the technology to use, Herrera developed an Esko Package Design Workshop for the summer program that ran for seven weeks. It was taught by Kimberly Anne Yu, Esko Application Engineer.
In the beginning of the workshop, students develop new skill sets. One of the goals is to have the students build a basic box and apply graphics, creating concepts for a cube or a tissue box. For the second part of the workshop, the students go into greater depth, learning how to use Studio Toolkit for Flexibles, for packaging design. The curriculum digs deep into the different types of packaging applications that this software can render, such as stand-up and drink pouches, candy bar wrappers, snack bags - even diaper bags. A tutorial exercise will demonstrate how to create a bag from scratch, taking full advantage of Studio's tools palette, including pan/rotate, zoom, fold line, mesh, puller, freeze, align graphics and visualization, allowing settings for contents of air, liquid, material stiffness and rounding. The course will also review the concept of spot versus four-color, showing results in Studio. Students will explore putting graphics onto the bag, with second and third previewing. As the workshop comes to completion, students will work on an exercise to create a quick bag or pouch using Studio Toolkit for Flexibles.
"Esko's software is designed for visualization and production, and the realization of true packaging," says Herrera. "It takes you from start to finish so you can see a realistic version of what you've created."
Although the Esko technology is still fairly new for most of the students, the excitement is evident. "Our students are already trying to push the envelope with the software," says Herrera. "We predict by the end of next term to see some unexpected results. When our design students get their hands on the software, you will start seeing some surprising things."