Tue, May

It seems an age ago that we started talking about the potential of textile printing as a suitable diversification for digital large-format PSPs, but it’s been a slow burner for well understood and well documented reasons. But has the technology, market demand and your strategic vision led to what the machinery manufacturers at least would have us believe is a real flash point? Let me know your thoughts on textile print production possibilities within your own set-up.

As you know we’re currently conducting the annual Image Reports Widthwise survey – in which I encourage you to participate. To take part, please click here. It will be interesting to see how information from grass roots players in the UK measures against what Lightwords Imaging is saying about the state of the global wide-format digital print market given its forecast of a 10% annual market growth over next three years. Fingers crossed you agree!

We’re back and raring to go - hope you are too!

If you’ve been an Image Reports newsletter and/or magazine reader for long, you’ll know that at the start of every year we ask you to take part in the annual Widthwise Survey to help us create the biggest piece of independent research on wide-format inkjet market in the UK. In May, the results will be published in the free Widthwise Report to help you futureproof your print business. Obviously the more PSPs that take part in the poll, the more representative the data will be.

So please get involved at: https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/PDFQV5J or via the Image Reports website: http://www.imagereportsmag.com

Season’s greetings! This will be the last Image Reports’ enewsletter of 2015 – we’ll return on 7 January 2016. Hope you all manage to have a happy and restful break.

…are your Christmas pics. I don’t mean your family snaps, but images of festive large-format print jobs that I can use in the upcoming Think Bigger Gallery. You know where to email them…

So, as oil prices continue to fall and we benefit from cheaper petrol/diesel prices at the pumps, to what extent will it impact your business? Should you expect it to cut more than your transport costs? What about energy prices? What about consumables prices for that matter? Just asking…

It’s been a great year to be a large-format orientated PSP, and while next year shows signs of being tougher it should still be a good one for those with the nouse to overcome the hurdles.

Alright, what are your thoughts on your company breaking into functional and industrial print markets? We keep being bombarded by stats telling us there’s enormous potential there – and no doubt there is. But for whom? My take has been that they are not particularly likely expansion/diversification routes for PSPs in the large-format graphics space. Am I wrong?

Do you think your business has a responsibility to help curb climate change – in however small a way that might be? I thought I’d again pose the question given Avery Dennison’s new pledge, and its CEO’s comment that the “imminent global threat” of climate change “demands urgent action from all segments of society - including business - while we still have time to act.” If you have a strong view let me know.

I’m currently researching an article on the value of speaking at conferences and events. If you have, are, or see the potential of doing so – whether it be to raise your company’s profile, build business and/or educate those outside of print about the sector’s potential - I’d love to hear from you.

The images from Agfa of the restored doors to a key part of the Byodo-in Buddhist temple near Kyoto in Japan provide that ‘wow’ factor that we so want to get across to would be wide-format digital inkjet customers – particularly those who may never before have thought of the process as an option for what they want to achieve. If you have any awe inspiring images of digitally printed wide-format work please let me have them, together with a few lines on the job. I’ll aim to get them into the Image Reports gallery of work, but also onto our Think Bigger website for creatives, and onto the associated Think Bigger Pinterest boards. Thank you.

I have been contacted by someone who has worked for a small family-owned print business for almost 10 years and is thinking about branching out on his own, disillusioned with the way his bosses shrug their shoulders at decreasing profit, bemoan the cost of upgrading and complain that the trade "isn't like the old days". My twentysomething contact is working on his own business plan and needs data and input on the fine art digital printing sector. If you are willing to help drop me a line.

Well done to TheMagicTouch for stepping up to the plate and putting print in front of youngsters as a possible career choice at the upcoming Skills Show at the NEC later this week. Working with Proskills and the National Apprenticeship Service the company is helping showcase what the industry can offer – certainly a step the in the right direction and one to be applauded – but it’s a shame we aren’t making more noise given the industry’s size and scope. Maybe next time…