When we moved to Chicago, our apartment overlooked the Chicago Sun-Times building on Wabash Avenue alongside the Chicago River. This plot was sold off for development with a large tower being built on its site. The construction that followed will be another post but this one relates to the demolition process. The view from our window provided a great view of the tearing down of the old building. It didn’t hurt that much of it was done during the Chicago winter, but I could watch from the comfort of our living room.
The building came down pretty quickly. Crews were using jack hammers to drill out the concrete flooring of each level and the machines that these were mounted on could also pull over the wall sections once cutting torches had taken out key elements of them. There was plenty of cutting going on with torches taken out structure and piping. This didn’t always go smoothly with more than one occasion when the cutting set fire to something and the fire department came to deal with it. A lot of water from the hoses would pour out of the spaces in the walls and, given the low temperatures, lots of icicles would result.
There weren’t too many floors in the building with the lowest levels being where the printing presses had once been. The whole thing came down quickly. It wasn’t an attractive structure so we weren’t so sad to see it go. However, since it was low, it gave us a good view across the river. The new building would be 92 floors tall and was going to take out a chunk of our view but such is the way of things when you live downtown in a city that is constantly evolving.
I do like to experiment with
alternative printing options and, when I heard an ad on the radio for
FractureMe, a company that prints on glass, I was curious as to how it would
look. I decided to make a print with
them and to see how it came out. Their
approach is pretty much how it sounds. A
print is created on glass with a what backing sheet to provide the base and
that is it. Nothing tricky about
preparing the files so I uploaded an eclipse shot I had and placed the
order. I did this just before Christmas
and the lead time was three weeks, probably as a result of a bunch of holiday
I sort of forgot about it for a
while. When I got the shipping
notification, I was quite excited until I realized it would be a week for the
package to make its way across the country.
When it did arrive, I was quite impressed with the way it had been
packed. The image was recessed into a
cardboard mount that was supported by a thick sheet of corrugated card. All of this was wrapped together and then
slotted into mounts on the edge of a far larger box. It was stable and well away from potential
dings. It arrived in great shape along
with a mounting screw for the wall.
The image looks great. The eclipse shot is not a standard type of
image so I haven’t tested color reproduction with this but it does look nice
and the darkness of the shot seems to work with the glass well. The first thing I had to do was clean
it. It seemed to have acquired a lot of
dust – presumably in the packaging phase.
Now it is time to find a spot to keep it long term. For now it is sitting on the mantelpiece.
One of the things that I am always experimenting with is the alternatives available when it comes to reproducing the images I produce. I am always a fan of printing things. My home is full of prints that I have made on my printer or I have bought from MPix. There are far more of them than I will ever be able to hang or frame. However, while it is nice to see pictures on the monitor, I find a physical print to be a lot more satisfying.
Recently, though, I have been trying out various different methods of printing. I have blogged before about my experiments with canvas prints and I have previously tried some metal printing on tiles to make up larger images. I was introduced to another company that prints on metal via a couple of fellow ISAP members, Bill Fortney and Moose Peterson. They have used a company called Image Wizards. I decided to give them a try.
The website provided all of the image requirements for setting up the file for them to use. Unlike my previous experiences with metal printing, they wanted a high pixel per inch count for the file. I have no idea whether this is really necessary or not but I followed their guidelines which obviously increases the file size. I contacted them about the order and took some advice on what the different finish options would be. I uploaded the file through an FTP upload and they also had a discount from my NAPP membership.
About a week later a very large box showed up. They certainly pack the print well for shipping and buried in the middle of the protective material was my print. I have to say that I love it. It was an image I was already pleased with and the metal finish both looks great and also is very accessible to the viewer since there is nothing to get between you and the lovely print finish. The metal base gives it a very attractive look.
My problem, as with all of my printing experiments is what to do with it. Where I live does not have a huge amount of wall space and my wife is not keen that what space there is gets filled up with my aviation prints. Storing them is possible but still takes space so this one is actually going to go to the guy whose plane is featured. I just hope he likes it as much as I do!
I guess the title is a bit of a lie in this case as the alternate is actually canvas. I haven’t done any canvas printing for a while. I used to have some canvas that printed in one of my previous Epson ink jets but I haven’t used that stuff since changing printers and haven’t ever found profiles from the manufacturer so they must have disappeared not long after I bought the stuff.
I have experimented on printing on a number of finishes in recent times with some printing on metal that has come out well. However, I gently had a client who was interested in a large format panorama. I was hunting for a good printer for this since my regular print outlet does not cater to large format panos at all. I had used another place as a trial but they had produced a really crappy result. While searching for an alternative, I mentioned to the client that I had heard good things about a place that specialized in canvas prints including larger format panos and was he interested. It turned out he had already been wondering about a canvas print.
I prepped the files and sent them off to the place. I told him to hold off paying for it until I had seen whether it was worthwhile. If I don’t like the result, I am not going to have a client paying the price if my name is on the work. The turnaround was really pretty speedy.
I received the canvas and I have to say I was impressed. It was mounted on a wood frame ready stretched. The finish was excellent and the colors looked very vibrant. The packing was also good and the whole product was well protected. I will certainly use this place again if I have anyone after a similar product and I now find myself contemplating some panoramic options for myself to justify a print for home.