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Hill Shorter Creative Print & Communications

Just as envisaged

Hill Shorter Creative Print & Communications contacted Reflex to assist with creation of a fitting finish to Jeff Wayne’s War of The Worlds Musical Tour programme.

Famed for their innovative design and production of supporting literature related to the music industry including Tour programmes, Brochures, Limited edition sleeves and publications, Hill Shorter were looking for a 3D lenticular cover mount and turned to Reflex for expert guidance and print provision.

As with most projects of this type, we had significant input on the design concept and creative elements. Our advice was based on our extensive experience ensured artwork was supplied in the best format for our studio to use.

Clear from the earliest scamped designs, we knew if provided with the correct artwork an incredible depth effect could be achieved and advised use of a 100 3D lens.

Specifically selected, the 3D 100 Lpi Lens performs very well for smaller sizes, particularly when viewed up close.  For a hand held Tour Brochure it delivered optimum depth performance, ensuring logos or copy remaining clear and sharp.

The initial artwork composition was an excellent starting point with a sense of perspective already in the image, the darker background, machines, bright flames, lights and lasers all in layers coming at you from distance and into the foreground.

Creating any 3D can take a huge amount of time and setting up the artwork correctly is a big part of that. When producing 3D ideally subjects should be separated, cut out on individual layers so any underlying image can be cloned or back filled so when you bring an item forward you don’t see a void or white gap.

The client’s creative team did a fantastic job splitting the file into layers, then we needed to take it to another level for the stunning effect we had in mind, and eventually a 3D rendered proof was produced using over 55 Photoshop layers.

We also configured a variety of depth maps that used in conjunction with our specialist 3D software adds volume and form to the finished article.  A depth map is a Photoshop layer made up of 100% – 0% black tones illustrated as a black and white image. Anything white (0% black) is the nearest point, while 100% black is the farthest point.

After many hours constructing and correcting the 3D map to a point where all parties were happy, we output an interlaced Epson proof and hand mounted to Lens.

The most economical manner of producing pre-production samples, hand mounted proofs offer an inexpensive preview to the highly accurate final production. This is due to differences in resolution, 1440dpi Proofing, up to 4800dpi for final printing.

We sent proofs to the client, after feedback and amending a few areas, then re-proofing to give a couple of different depth options.

To ensure our customer was 100% happy with the final print and performance and to fully appreciate differences in quality we advised a press pass. This presented an added benefit of opportunity for subtle on-press colour manipulation to match the brochure.

After some minor tweaks on press the final product was created and when assembled with the Brochure looked fantastic – just as they and we had envisaged.

Once again I have to say a big thank you to all the team at Reflex for a superb production. Overcoming numerous unforeseen creative challenges thrown in along the way with approvals coming a lot later than scheduled you have delivered on time and I am delighted to report the finished article has been very well received. Another fine job.

Alan Hill, Hill Shorter