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The Good Old Days?


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After discharge from military service, my first job was with a local school district as a district designer.   I was responsible for the design, layout and illustration of graphics used on lesson plans, brochures, catalogs and posters. One morning I was summoned to the district’s superintendent’s office. Now when I was in high school I was summoned to the principal’s office on numerous occasions but a visit to the superintendent never happened. So I was thinking what the heck did I do to deserve this?

It turns out that the superintendent was interested in sprucing up the interiors of several of the older elementary schools. Most were painted with dirty looking green or beige walls and the buildings were depressing and had no life to them.

We came up with a plan to paint the walls with a washable, off-white semi-gloss and to use bold primary and secondary colors on accent walls. Large super graphics were to be introduced in the gymnasium, halls and stairwells.

The challenge was HOW to execute the plan. I ended up creating a large paint-by–number program. After taking field measurements, I would create a scale drawing on grid paper, complete with color-coding, and then I would transfer the drawing onto the wall with an opaque projector. Our district painters, who had painted school after school for years with their trusty paint rollers, were not keen on the idea of taking a brush and painting graphics on the walls – that is, until they experienced the excitement and reaction of the kids. “Are you an artist”, was a common question. The painter’s chest would puff up when he answered, “Yes I am”. After hearing that I knew I had complete buy-in. That being said, it was a long, time consuming process and I now question how good “The Good Old Days” were.

Fast-forward to today’s digital age. There are many new products now available for producing large format interior graphics and the end product is a lot more sophisticated than what I was producing years ago. The good thing is, several of these products are designed so that graphics can be easily produced, shipped, installed and updated. Here are a few examples:

INFINITY

The INFINITY is a wall-mounted aluminum extrusion frame system featuring taut, Dye Sublimated SEG Fabric Graphics. The Fabric Graphics utilize the SEG (Silicone Edged Graphics) finishing system. INFINITY provides a slimmer lighter wall mounting system that is barely visible. Many other extrusion frame systems are too heavy for wall-mounted applications. With INFINTY, the taut SEG graphics flow directly from edge-to-edge with only the smallest of finished aluminum frame exposed. The beauty of this system is that a seamless fabric graphic can be produced that is nearly 10’ high by whatever length (size is often dictated by the size of the furnished file). Opportunities for repeat business through contracted change-out programs can strengthen your company’s relationship while expanding your services!

TAC TAC

TacTac is a great pressure-sensitive peel & stick material that can be used indoors or outdoors. It is a low tac textile that will stick to most surfaces and can easily be removed for graphic updates. Use it on walls, windows, doors, laminated panels and SEG Fabric displays. TacTac can be wrapped around corners and poles. Cover walls, tables, counter surfaces and other structures for trade shows, events or retail interiors. Contour or kiss-cut TacTac to fit your design needs.

So rather than going ‘old-school’ and painting by numbers, stay current in today’s digital world and consider Infinity with SEG the next time you have a large mural project or TacTac when you need a temporary, durable, easy-to-install graphic – indoors or outdoors.
Call your Optima Account Coordinator for more Information.

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About the Author

Rich Fava is an Account Executive at Optima Graphics.
He has spent his career in the graphics world since earning his Design degree and in Trade Show since the early 90s.

The views expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of, and should not be attributed to, other Authors, Optima Graphics or Taylor Corp.

  1. Gary Camarato
    June 12, 2015 at 1:30 pm

    Check out a few TacTac uses on the Optima Pinterest site

  2. Jim Pona
    April 28, 2016 at 10:06 am

    Rich, If you get this, send me your email. Some friends from our old fraternity are getting together!

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