Articles by: Carly Utegg
Custom Storefront Window Graphics
We teamed up with Jakprints to show off our brand new store front as well as their awesome large format printing capabilities. Here you’ll get to see the full process from conception to installation.
Step 1 : The Concept
We ran through a few different ideas before finally landing on a concept for our first set of window banners. We wanted to create a large collage of icons which all, in one way or another represented the life of an artist and more specifically the crew here at Cleveland graphic, logo and web design studio Go Media. This included a good mix of the tools we use, the things we like and Cleveland, Ohio!
We thought it would be most helpful to start by creating a list of all of the individual items that needed to be created – then we asked our entire staff to add items that they felt represented Go Media and being an artist to them. We made sure to include a piece of everyone.
Step 2 : Sketches & Measurements
Now we had the concept down, and the first step in the production phase was to measure and quickly sketch the general layout of the icons.
Step 3 : Graphic Proofs
Now we had the concept down, and the first step in the production phase was to measure and quickly sketch the general layout of the icons. Once we had our rough blueprint sketch, it was a process of knocking out each item on the list one by one and working them together with some Jakprints logos to really fill the space.
Once all the icons were in place, a texture was applied using an opacity mask.
Step 4 : Applying an Opacity Mask (Texture)
An opacity mask is essentially a combination of a layer mask and a clipping mask. It allows you to control the transparency of a shape based off of a black and white gradient or in this case texture. You can use an opacity mask in place of a vector texture to cut back on your file size.
How it works:
- Group all of the elements you wish to apply the opacity mask to and make sure they are set to 100% opacity.
- With your group selected, click the drop down menu in the transparency palette and select ‘Make Opacity Mask’.
- A mask is applied to the image like you see here, click into the mask.
- With the mask selected, you can now file > place your texture.
You’re Done! Depending on the texture you selected the result might be very subtle or rather extreme. Because the one we are using here is primarily light the outcome was very subtle. You can also check the ‘Invert Mask’ box to get a different effect, but for our purpose this subtle texture was just right.
Step 5 : Teaming Up with Jakprints
Now we had a graphic proof and were ready to sit down with Jakprints and go over our options. We knew we wanted to do banners for the windows but weren’t quite sure how we were going to tackle the doors. JakPrints was able to provide us with a list of options to consider. Some of which included:
- Vinyl Banners
- Vinyl Mesh Banners
- Poly-Banners with Stitched Hems
- Window Clings
- Vinyl Decals
We ended up up selecting a lightweight stretch banner for the main windows. This material is wrinkle resistant, and because we know we will be swapping out banners over the years this works out best in terms of storage. JakPrints also offers a wide variety of substrates (eco-friendly, economic, or synthetic for maximum durability).
For the windows we decided to go with a clear vinyl application. This was adhered backwards to the inside of the windows, a non-permanent short term option that prevents weathering of the graphics. JakPrints also has long term outdoor durability options as well as many more solutions for just about any application. Some others include: Wall, floor, posters, trade show displays, indoor/outdoor signs, back-lit material, yard signage, even vehicle wrap.
Step 6 : The Printing Process
After rounds of revisions, swapping icons in and out the design was done it was ready for the printers at Jakprints to work their magic.
Step 7 : Installation
Before we were ready to physically install the banners we needed to think through the logistics of the space. We created a mockup of our hanging system and had Jakprints sew in hems to match.
When the banners finally arrived we were all anxious to get them up. So we gathered our team and got to work.
The window vinyl for the doors was a slightly more complicated installation, not one we were willing to attempt. But we need not worry because Jakprints has access to a nationwide network of certified 3M installers, so they set out one of their guys to finish the job.
Step 6 : Conclusion
So there you have it, after all that hard work we are proud to reveal our beautiful new store front and our very first set of window graphics!
A big thank you to JakPrints for working with us on this project!
Want to work with us to create something beautiful? Contact us here.
We’ve got the goods!
That’s right! We’re back once again with more awesomely updated mockup templates from the Arsenal! Say hello to the Poster Mockup Templates! Now with smart object functionality, these templates allow you to view that artwork you’ve worked so hard on realistically creating, in the perfectly right perspective, with just a few clicks! Yep, it’s that easy! Never heard of a smart object? It’s okay, we’ll get you up to speed!
And why are they so good you ask?
Well, for starters we’ve taken all the hard work of creating the perfect clipping mask and turned it into a simple double click process. You click twice on the smart object, add your artwork, hit save and just like that your art adopts the perfect perspective, highlights, shadows and everything else!
Wait, there’s more!
We didn’t just add a few smart objects and call it good; we did a complete and total file makeover.
- We’ve got cleaner and more precise clipping masks.
- We’ve reorganized the layers for a better ease of use and a more realistic end result.
- We’ve loaded a variety of prepared colors for the poster backgrounds.
- We made sure the backgrounds of the files were all of the same color and easily removable to allow for transparent PNG exports (when applicable.)
- We fine-tuned so many more little details here and there.
Now, after all that we can call it good! I would even go as far as to call it great!
So, what will I get?
The pack consists of 9 PSD files, four of which are smart object enabled and one display scene template!
All of this for just $34.99!
Because we’ve worked so hard on this and because we’re very excited to share these with the world, we’re announcing a discount coupon for the customers who will purchase this new version of the mockup templates. Use the code smartobjectposters at checkout for $9.99 off when buying the pack. The code is valid until sometime around the end of the day on June 21st, 2013.
Now that’s a good deal if I do say so myself! Better snatch it up before it’s gone!
But wait! If you think that’s a good deal you’re going to love this…
It’s bundle time!
With the re-release of our poster templates, our object mockup collection is fully updated. We’re partnering up with the good folks at MyDesignDeals to offer that object mockup collection for at an AWESOME VALUE, for a limited time only!
The deal will go live on June 18th, 2013, and will be live for a week. It’ll include the record mockup templates, the CD mockup templates, and the poster mockup templates, all in their updated versions.
Oh, and why did we choose to work with MyDesignDeals you ask? Well, John, the guy that runs MDD, blew us out of the water when he showed us that he created a video tutorial on how to use the CD mockup templates for his customers. That guy cares about doing things right. Check this out:
He absolutely convinced us. In order to know when exactly the deal will go live on the 18th, you should subscribe to the Arsenal’s newsletter, as we’ll send some reminders about when it’ll go live and when it will be taken down.
Once the deal is over, the collection will be available on the Arsenal.
And that’s it for today. Until next time, cheers!
I’d like to introduce to you the newest member of the Arsenal’s smart object family… drum roll please… let’s welcome the CD Case Mockup Templates! These templates have nifty “magical containers” in them. Call them “smart containers” if you don’t want to play along. Don’t know what a smart object is? Well then before we get started let’s go back in time and fill you in on the total upgrade! Now, take a seat and enjoy the show!
So, What’s new?
Not much, what’s new with you? Oh wait, you meant with the product! Well for starters with this specific pack we worked to incorporate the smart object function twice into one file! For example, in file n°12 (see above), with just a double click on each of the smart objects, you’ll be able to realistically customize the entire product by inserting your artwork into both the CD label and case cover art. Just hit save and tada! Just like magic your art adopts the perfect perspective, highlights, shadows and everything else!
That’s not all folks!
We said total upgrade, meaning every file got a face lift!
- We’ve got cleaner and more precise clipping masks
- We’ve reorganized the layers for a better ease of use and a more realistic end result
- We’ve loaded a variety of prepared colors for the cases, booklets, and discs
- We made sure the backgrounds were all of the same color, and easily removable to allow for transparent PNG exports
- And we fine-tuned so many more little details here and there
Finally after all of that we are most excited and ready to present them to you!
So, What will I get?
The pack consists of 14 PSD files, 7 of which are smart object enabled.
All of this for only $34.99!
Because we’ve worked so hard on this and because we’re very excited to share these with the world, we’re announcing a discount coupon for the customers who will purchase this new version of the mockup templates. Use the code smartobjectcds at checkout for $9.99 off when buying the pack. The code is valid until sometime around the end of the day on June 14th, 2013.
So what are you waiting for? Better catch this deal before it disappears! Poof!
And now for our next trick!
That’s right, the show’s not over! We’ve got other updated mockup templates on the way! Keep an eye on this space for news about what’s next!
Until next time, cheers!