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In the Wink of an Eye

To produce retro pinup posters for Virginia beauty salon, Signmasters turns to its Roland printer.

The design for the new Wink beauty salon was unusual-think 1940s pin-up girls meet "a walk on the wild side." The brainchild of owners Debbie Glenn and Cheryl Griggs, the design would feature two diverse "personalities" that would appeal to a broad customer base. They turned to The Ludlow Group advertising agency to help them develop the artistic styles for each segment of the shop. The retro pin-up side would use vintage posters as its theme: three posters output at 6 x 8 ft, as well as four window graphics to add privacy for salon clients. For the funky street look, local graffiti artists would be brought in to create original art on the salon walls.

The Ludlow Group provided the circa-1940s pin-up girl posters, which Rick Ricketts of Signmasters in Virginia Beach scanned in using a Umax Powerlook 2100XL flatbed scanner. Once brightened and cleaned-up in Photoshop, the images for the three 6 x 8-ft wall murals were printed at 720 dpi using the shop’s Roland SolJet Pro II V SC-545EX onto MacTac Imagin JT5829p PVC film. Ricketts applied MacTac Permacolor LF6548 2.9-mil overlaminate with a Royal Sovereign cold laminator.

In preparation for installation, 6 x 8-ft panels of Alpolic Al-Leader composite were constructed and affixed to the wall using screw-in button caps around the perimeter, mimicking the look of rivets. The installation of the graphics was tricky and very exacting, says Ricketts. "The printed vinyl was installed top-to-bottom onto the Alpolic panels, unscrewing each cap as it was squeegeed down, then reinserting the cap to hold graphic in place." The four 6 x 8-ft window "splashes" were imaged onto Clear Vision ClassicVue, also using the shop’s Roland.

Since the whole shop was being remodeled, Signmasters had to coordinate graphics production and installation with the ad agency and metal fabricators, as well as the carpenters, drywallers, and electrical contractors. "Communication was paramount. You want to get in clean and quick with the install so that you don’t get held up-or hold up someone else."

Wink Salon (www.winksalon.com), Virginia Beach, VA

The Players
The Ludlow Group (www.theludlowgroup.com), Signmasters (www.signmastersvb.com)

Tools & Supplies
Roland SolJet Pro II V SC-545EX, Roland eco-solvent inks and VersaWorks RIP, Umax Powerlook 2100XL scanner, MacTac Imagin JT5829p PVC vinyl with a permanent pressure-sensitive adhesive, MacTac semi-matte Permacolor LF6548 overlaminate, Alpolic Al-Leader 3-mil aluminum composite, Clear Focus One Way Vision ClassicVue, Royal Sovereign laminator.