Artsy and Hip
The Geisha House lets in the light in this P-O-P series installation
Sometimes, P-O-P graphics are capable of more than purely selling products. In the case of The Geisha House restaurant, graphics produced by Zing Graphics of Santa Fe Springs, California, express the restaurant's artsy, hip Japanese-inspired atmosphere without a single printed word.
The owner of the restaurant re-connected with Zing Graphics owner Kristina Maez after the shop wrapped a vehicle for him four years earlier. For the restaurant, Maez says, "They wanted graphics on the inside and outside of the window while still retaining some of the natural light, but without it being washed out." After conducting media tests and a site survey--and visiting the owner's other restaurant to get a feel for exactly what the client preferred--Maez and crew proceeded with production.
The job comprised covering the inside and outside of 18 windows in all: two windows measuring 112 x 76 inches, eight measuring 113½ x 9 inches, six at 69 x 72 inches, and two others at 107½ x 122½ inches. Printing for all 18 windows took about two days to complete.
Images were provided by the client, sourced from Getty. Using its Mimaki JV3 with Onyx RIP and Bordeaux solvent inks, Zing executed the output on Read & Co. Pressure Sensitive Translucent Vinyl.
"It was definitely a delicate project because they were done in panels." Maez says, "We trimmed by hand and there was no room for error because they were going back to back."
Installation was done in two parts by a single Zing installer. The interior window graphics were installed before the restaurant opened (and an inside counter was placed), while the exterior window graphics were installed the following week. "We had to be sure that the images would mirror each other, Maez says, "So that when they were essentially mounted to each other with only the glass in between, it would reflect the same image."
"The challenge was making sure we got exactly what the client wanted. The result was almost an etched glass look," Maez says. After testing regular calendared vinyl, translucent vinyl, as well as a clear laminate, she decided that the translucent option would make the images pop the most.
Most of Zing Graphics' customers are event-based but Maez says the shop's specialties include fabric printing as well as large-format printing. "I'm humbled by what I do, I love print and dealing with my customers, and I love the satisfaction of a job well done." Maez says. Zing employs seven and runs two EFI Vutek printers, a Mimaki JV4, a HP 5000, and a dye-sub printer in the shop's 10,000-square-foot workspace.