Latest News

Graphic Grab Bag – personalised print problems & bring back our book awards

Friday, 30 November 2018
By Patrick Howard

Personalised digital communication has faced a long uphill battle to become accepted. Apart from bog standard utility and financial statements with names and addresses, the degree of personalisation has never matched digital print’s capacity to tailor make a true one-on-one communication.

Part of the problem is the lack of knowledge from clients who don’t know what can be done, or the effectiveness of good personalised printing.

According to the people at InfoTrends, much of the blame can be shafted home to procurement departments in large corporations, the very businesses that can make best use of the technology. In a report out this week, Pricing for Digital: Overcoming Obstacles on the Path to Profitable Pricing, they claim procurement departments are aggressively pursuing lower prices even as production costs (driven by consumer expectations for high quality, personalized, and secure communications) continue to climb.

Many enterprises, particularly those with the greatest volume of transactional communications such as banks, health insurance and government, are only interested in transmitting their messages as cheaply, not as effectively, as possible.

________

Signing off… the ten who turned up for the wake of The Galley Club last year; (left to right) Nicola Martin, Michael Schulz, Janis Griffith, Andy McCourt, Terry Flynn, Robert Stapleford, Chris Stevens, James Cryer, Glenn O’Connor and Patrick Howard.

I was reminded by the announcement of the winners 2018 British Book Design & Production Awards, that we no longer have a local event. Ever since the Galley Club folded into oblivion last year, despite the herculean efforts of Michael Shultz, Australian designers, publishers and printers are without a means of peer recognition. It’s a shame.

This year’s UK award for books produced locally goes to a volume entitled, That Book. The title is a collection of photographs, ephemera of US life in the 1970s. It’s filled with images, photographs, maps and words printed on papers, on films with die cut and throw outs and tip ons. The bewildering complex imposition arrangement had sections varying greatly from single pages upwards. Ludlow Bookbinders did the hard yards.

There’s a wonderful sense of the globalisation of the publishing industry at the awards

UK printers were named 28 times in the shortlists across all sections, behind China with 35 short listed titles and winners in seven categories. Italian companies won three sections outright with 21 shortlisted. There were also shortlisted entries from Germany, Latvia, Belgium (one winning), India, Thailand and Serbia.

We need our book awards back.

________

Reinforcing the fact that new technology rarely complete replaces what’s gone before, comes the release from Fujifilm the of the Instax Creative Kit! Just in time for summer holidays it’s a mini film camera for people who want to have printed pictures. Of course it comes in Flamingo Pink and Smoky Grey.

My grand daughter has her entire bedroom walls almost covered in shiny little images from the HP Sprocket version.

Away from the mini photos I’m told both Kodak and Agfa also have thriving businesses in one-off film cameras for tourists and special occasions. People like to have printed photos and we rarely go to the trouble of downloading them and taking them into a camera store.

Me, I’m attached to my phone, but I do miss the printed-out photos.

________

Christmas closure notices are coming in torrents. This year Friday 21 December is the popular shut down with reopening divided between those who come back around the 3rd or 4th and the rest who wait the full two weeks for Monday 7th January.

Most printers, being SME family owned businesses are taking the full break. Here at Print21 we’re following suit.

________

And finally… Did you hear about the vet who’s also a taxidermist? There was a sign outside his office. Either way, you get your dog back.

Comment on this article


To receive notification of comments made to this article, you can also provide your email address below.