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First Place Winner: Iconography Studios


By Melissa Donovan


Part 1 of 4


We congratulate all six of this year’s Application of the Year awards winners. Thanks to nominations from print service providers (PSPs), vendors, and other notable industry contributors, each of these businesses were brought to the forefront with innovative projects that exemplify the unique possibilities that the graphic arts presents. Readers voted and in the next few weeks this Web-exclusive series profiles first, second, third, and honorable mention winners.


The first place winner, Iconography Studios, based in Los Alamitos, CA, offers a range of services to its customer base, including large format digital printing, graphic design, vehicle wrap design, production and installation, wall and window wraps, sign design, and manufacturing. Established in January 2008, the company works out of one 3,700 square foot location with a total of seven employees.


Its recent wrap for client Cory Pesaturo earned it first place in Digital Output’s 2013 Application of the Year awards. Not your average project, the musician requested his accordion wrapped after seeing a piano and drum wrap set done for Roland DGA Corporation. According to Sarah Naccarato, president, Iconography, Pesaturo was looking for something equally spectacular for his new Roland manufactured accordion, completely custom to reflect his personality.


From job submittal to install, the entire process spanned ten weeks. About half of that time included creating and finalizing the design. Pesaturo had an idea of what he wanted and sent pictures to Iconography. Thinking ahead, Jan Mislang, lead designer, Iconography, created a detailed template based on the accordion’s dimensions so the final graphic lined up properly with the instrument.


Once the design was pinned down, it came time to print using a Roland SOLJET Pro III XC-540 54-inch wide format printer/cutter with Roland Eco-Sol MAX inks. The PSP owns two Roland devices and only works with OEM inks in both. Naccarato says it receives the best color output from the printers.


In regards to media selection, Naccarato and her team turned to 3M Commercial Graphics. 3M media is preferred for the installers, as they are most familiar with the vinyl and how it conforms. “They felt these would be the easiest to use when wrapping something as intricate and curvy as an accordion,” she explains. 3M Controltac Graphic Film IJ180-10 and 3M Scotchcal Gloss Overlaminate 8518 were specifically used for this application.


When it came to installing the print, several days went into crafting a game plan on how to approach the process. “That sort of internal creative process of mulling things over and getting comfortable with it,” explains Naccarato. The result was four hours of disassembly and reassembly combined and 15 hours of applying the printed media in between.


The detail that went into the install portion was immaculate, as the team documented the disassembly so that they could reassemble the accordion properly after it was wrapped. After removing the bellows of the instrument, the vinyl was placed over the entire surface, and then cut away from the vents, keys, and other small areas.


Pesaturo loved the result. Looking back on the entire project, Naccarato expresses the multiple challenges that they overcame to provide such a unique, high-quality product. Citing that they had never wrapped an accordion before, which in itself was a challenge, the team looked past that and relied on their experience with wrapping in general.


As mentioned prior, Mislang was savvy in measuring and creating a tight template prior to print. As there are no template packages for accordions, detailed measurements were taken to ensure the design fit the way it was conceptualized.


Naccarato notes that Mislang was also an essential component to the process not only in design, but install. Being an experienced installer, he was the primary vinyl adherer. “The continuity contributed to the successful outcome,” she says.


Iconography’s accordion wrap is innovative and holds true to the meaning of the Application of the Year contest. Defining the industry, it proves that just about anything can be wrapped as long as time and consideration are fully pooled into the process by all members on a team. There are no limits.


“All you really need is a vision, and with the tools available today it is very easy to turn that vision into a reality. Fortunately our team likes challenges. Where others might say no way, we say—how can we figure this out,” explains Naccarato.


The next part of this series looks at the second place winner of the Application of the Year awards—Maxwell Dickson of Los Angeles, CA.

Click on the link above to get more information on the vendors mentioned in this article.

Aug2013, Digital Output DOAPPY1308

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