Thursday, 14 September 2017

Beyond the Great Wave

Katsushika Hokusai (1760–1849) is widely regarded as one of Japan’s most famous and influential artists. He produced works of astonishing quality right up until his death at the age of 90. This new exhibition held this Summer at the British Museum covers the period of the last 30 years of Hokusai’s life – a time when he produced some of his most memorable masterpieces. The exhibition was a phenomenal success resulting in most tickets being sold out.

These are the private view invitations produced for the launch of the exhibition in May. The two invitations are both 8pp, A5 portrait and feature Hokusai’s artwork.
This invitation is printed on our Omnia 320gsm, which is a very bulky board with a subtle, natural texture and tactile surface. Reproduction is superb with the all the detail retained in the images. 
The images as reproduced on each of the invitations:
Click on images to enlarge
Below show the invitations laid out flat, front and back
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Below is a birds eye view of the invitation:
One thing that I must point out here is just how amazing the black solid on Omnia looks - a real dense, even black solid - nice and even.
Design is by the in-house team at the British Museum, headed by Ann Lumley.

The invitation is printed by Park Lane Press. It is printed offset litho but Park Lane print using a 'waterless' process that eliminates the water or dampening system used in conventional printing. The specialist plates allow the printed dot to be held more securely preventing any unwanted movement of ink and minimising dot gain to create a sharper image in ultra fine definition. They are one of the very few printers who champion the use of this waterless process.

Posted by Justin Hobson 14.09.2017

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Surfers against Sewage - Plastic Free Coastlines Against Sewage is widely recognised as one of the UK’s leading marine conservation charities. Surfers Against Sewage today deals with a wide spectrum of marine conservation issues from marine litter to climate change.

Established in 1990 by people (originally surfers) who were sick of seeing sewage in the sea and on beaches.  It was their direct contact with the ocean and sadly the chronic sewage pollution of the time that was the visceral driving force behind the emerging organisation, something that remains strong to this day. However marine plastic pollution and climate change are now the new issues of concern.

This literature has been produced to accompany their PLASTIC FREE COASTLINES campaign. There are two pieces of literature, a 'Community Toolkit' booklet and a 'Individual Action Plan' broadsheet.
The paper used is our Favini SHIRO Alga Carta, Bianco, chosen because it was in keeping with the sustainable nature of the project, because it is manufactured partly using algae harvested from the Venice lagoon, combined with recycled and FSC certified fibres. Algae blooms at the end of Summer in the Venice lagoon as the warm water combines with pollution and must be harvested to maintain the lagoon's eco-balance. 
The Community Toolkit booklet is A6 size (148x105mm). It has a 4pp cover printed on 300gsm and 44pp text on 120gsm.
Printed offset litho in two colours (red and black)
If you aren't familiar with Shiro Alga Carta, the specs of Alga are actually visible in the sheet as you can see in the detail below:
Click on images to enlarge
The 'Individual Action Plan' document is an A5 broadsheet format which folds out to A3, again printed in two colours, offset Litho.
Above is A5 (210x148mm) folding out to below:
...which then opens out to the below (A3)
The below image shows both sides of the broadsheet open:
Design of the literature is by Cornish based studio Leap. Matt Hocking, principal at Leap got FAVINI interested in the project, so that they sponsored the paper ...and it's worth remembering that the money to produce these publications is all raised by SAS members.

The publication is printed by St Austell Printing Company in Cornwall chosen as they have excellent sustainable credentials, print using vegetable inks and as they are close by to Leap and SAS, it keeps the carbon footprint down too!
Posted by Justin Hobson 12.09.2017

Friday, 8 September 2017

New Colorset Swatch

Many of you will know that a couple of years ago we started to bring in our Colorset range in 350gsm, so we now have ALL colours in 120gsm, 270gsm and 350gsm - all in B1 size (700x1000mm).
For those of you not familiar with Colorset, it is our range of coloured text and cover papers which is 100% recycled and more competitively priced than some other well known brands of coloured paper! Below is the updated swatch: 
The Colorset brand identity and swatch design was created by The Chase, some years ago but it's still going strong! Creative director on the project was Harriet Devoy and the designer was Monica Pirovano.

There are now 28 colours (including black and white) and two new shades, Chilli and Orchid -see image below
If you would like the updated swatch, please drop me an email and I'll pop one in the post
Posted by Justin Hobson 08.09.2017

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

The Wardian

Wardian London is a residential-led development under construction on the Isle of Dogs, London from Eco World-Ballymore and designed by architect firm Glenn Howells. The scheme consists of two skyscrapers and groundworks were started in 2015. Upon completion, expected to be in 2019, Wardian London will be one of the tallest residential developments in London and the UK.

This property brochure is not really a brochure at all - it is an amazingly produced, sumptuous case-bound book.

The size of the book is 320x245mm, portrait. It is case-bound with an 18mm spine and the text is section sewn 
The introduction 'flysheet' is actually a series of flysheets setting the scene of this development where each apartment has it's own 'sky garden' and the emphasis is on plants and the seasons.
There are 8pp of these 'flysheets' in both the front and back and they are printed on our lovely Offenbach Bible 60gsm  - just look at the print result, it's truly amazing, just remember this is a 60gsm sheet of uncoated paper! just feels beautiful.
The majority of this 126pp book is printed on our Omnia 120gsm.The reason that Omnia was chosen is because it would beautifully reproduce the photography with the rich greens of the gardens, solid colours and dark photography and most importantly feel special - with the reproduction that you would expect on a silk or gloss but with a natural tactile uncoated feel.
Click on images to enlarge
There are six chapters within the book. Each of the chapters is preceded by a 'tip in' featuring a pen and ink illustrations of the type of plants studied by Nathaniel Ward after whom the development is named.
The size of the 'tip in' is 230x162mm and printed on our Astralux 90gsm which is a 1 sided cast coated paper. The illustration is printed on the uncoated side with the credit being printed in one colour on the reverse (glossy) side.
Throughout the publication there are 14 half pages which are 162mm wide. The dividers highlight particular features of the development as you can see below...
Click on images to enlarge
The below image shows the half page titled 'Natural Fragrances'. As you can see the half pages sit in these wonderfully luxurious spreads without disruption, they enhance the experience for the reader.
 The book is printed Offset litho throughout in CMYK plus a metallic gold pantone 'special' ink. This is the other very good reason that Omnia was chosen for this project. On most traditional uncoated papers, metallic inks can look flat and gold can just look a bit brown, but as I hope the below image demonstrates, the metallic gold type really does look metallic on Omnia.

Another feature is the use of gloss UV varnish. Unlike most uncoated products, you can successfully gloss UV varnish on Omnia (with a single hit) and it works really well - as you can see in the below pic...
This is a very effective and subtle use of gloss UV varnish.
For the floorplans there is also a 'throw- out'. Printed solid black plus the metallic gold keylines and type.
Click on images to enlarge
The book is beautifully bound, section sewn and neat black headbands and a divider ribbon.
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This is an exquisitely produced book which using a great choice of materials does convey all the special features and luxury that this development offers. Design is by Made Thought.

Print production is by Push based in London. The quality of reproduction on the different materials and the excellent binding and attention to detail has simply got to be seen to be believed, it is a truly stunning job.

I'm sure that you can tell from the way that I've written about this project that this really is a special piece of print - it's one of those rare projects where all those elements that go into producing a piece of literature (concept/design/illustration/photography/print/paper/finishing etc) come together and combine to produce the most superlative result.
Posted by Justin Hobson 05.09.2017

Friday, 1 September 2017

Jobs from the past - Number 95

Regular followers of this blog will know that my first post of every month is a "job from the past" so that I can show some of the really good work from years gone by...

Boots Company Report and Accounts 1997
I was reminded about this project from twenty years ago as this project uses paper made at the Curtis Fine Paper, Guardbridge Paper Mill, which has since closed and now houses the Eden Mill brewery and distillery, which I wrote about below.

Up until the early 2000's the design and printing of company annual report and accounts was VERY big business. In the burgeoning design market of the 1980's and 90's There were many design companies which specialised in just annual reports (the likes of Michael Peter, Bamber Forsyth, Benjamin Rowntree, Radley Yeldar etc) and printers who would specialise in printing them such as Greenaway Harrison, Litho-Tech, Oakley Press, White Dove etc.

Back in those dim and distant days, it was very common for Annual Reports to be divided into the Report - printed on a white paper, printed in four colour process (with photographs!) and the Accounts section - printed on a coloured paper ...and this job follows that pattern.

This is the Report and Accounts for the Boots Company, the group of companies based on the Nottingham chemists founded in 1849 by John Boot. Back in 1997 they were a PLC in the FTSE 100, however ten years ago they were bought by a private equity firm based in Switzerland. The design is by Addison and the printer was Litho-Tech.

The size of the report is 297x180mm, portrait. It has a 4pp cover, which is printed in a blue and is matt laminated.
Below you can see the split between the two sections.
According to my notes, the 36pp front 'report' section was printed on Zanders Megamatt 150gsm, printed in CMYK, possibly with a special and a 'spot gloss machine varnish' which was a highly desirable effect back in those days.
The 44pp 'accounts' section is where I came in! I was briefed by Karen Blades, Production Manager at Addison to provide a bespoke paper to what was described as a 'post it note yellow' shade, which as you can see from the result below, we managed to achieve.
Click on images to enlarge
We decided to work with Curtis Fine Paper, who at the time had two paper mills in Scotland, one at Dalmore and one at Guardbridge, previously they were know as GB Paper. I sent the mill a sample of the colour and the received a couple of 'lab samples' made in the technical department at the mill. These were then forwarded to Addison and eventually to the end client for approval. I've written about what a mill making is here:

In this instance, the mill agreed to make a 2 tonne trial so a small group went to the mill to see the paper as it was being made. This was pretty unusual even in those days! I visited the Guardbridge mill accompanied by Karen Blades from Addison and Derek Adnitt and Les Baker from Litho-Tech printers. As a result we were able to show the client EXACTLY the paper they were getting.

After that trial, Boots were shown the paper, it was approved and then the mill manufactured the remainder of the paper.
 - and back in those days everything was done by fax and fortunately I still have the fax in my archive with the approval...

Click on images to enlarge
The printers called Litho-Tech were based in Kennington, London who at the time was one of the leading corporate printers in London if not the UK. Sadly like many printers of that era, the company no longer exists. It was printed offset litho. My notes aren't completely clear but I recall it was about 16 tonnes . Derek Adnitt was the sales director, Les Baker, the production manager and Paul Watson the Managing Director. Here are the credits which are in the back of the report.
Karen Blades now works at Print Source UK and still spends her time producing quality annual reports!

...a real trip down memory lane!
Posted by Justin Hobson 01.09.2017