Frequently Asked Questions About Trade Show Fabric Graphics

If you have attended a trade show, convention, or event in the past four years, you have seen large, colorful fabric graphics. Fabric graphics have become the standard for most large format images. They are lightweight, vibrant, and durable, and are the perfect medium for trade shows, where every exhibitor wants minimal weight but still wants to make a big splash.

The options can be a bit overwhelming and getting more varied all the time. But for most of us, fabric graphics can be lumped into two categories: tension fabric or pillowcase graphics. The following is a convenient FAQ to get you quickly up to speed.

What is a tension fabric graphic?

Tension fabric graphics attach to a frame so the fabric is taut edge-to-edge, creating "tension." Typically, the graphic has Velcro hook sewn along the border, usually top and bottom, and attaches to Velcro loop on the frame.

What is a pillowcase fabric graphic?

Think of a printed pillowcase with zippers. A pillowcase graphic wraps around a frame structure and the inner and outer sections zip together along the least obvious edge. This creates a tailor fit. Almost all hanging sign structures are wrapped in pillowcase fabric graphics.

How does a tension fabric graphic differ from a pillowcase fabric graphic?

Tension fabric graphics attach to the frame, leaving the frame exposed. The fabric is held taut by attaching it to the frame using Velcro. Pillowcase graphics slip over the frame and hide the frame structure. The fabric is secured by a zipper (s).

What are the benefits of fabric graphics vs. traditional first surface graphics?

  • Flexibility . An array of fabric options and finishing exists. Fabric graphics can be adapted to just about any hardware
  • Storage and Shipping . Fabric is lighter than many other graphics. Fold your graphics neatly when in storage and take up much less space.
  • Care . Fabric graphics can be washed and steamed and are just as durable and long lasting as traditional graphics.
  • Lightweight. Larger graphics weigh less, perfect for draping or creating space definition.
  • Cost . More image bang for the buck!
  • Green . There are the obvious transportation and storage benefits. Even more exciting is the growing list of fabric options created from recycled materials.
  • No Glare . Fabric is the perfect choice for media walls or any background that is photographed or filmed.
  • Versatility . Fabric can be applied to most display and hardware options and is perfect for skinning or covering displays or objects. Custom covers can be created to drape over objects, wrap, or completely pillowcase them!

Do fabric graphics offer the same color saturation, vibrancy, definition, and overall image quality as other graphics?

Fabric not only matches other graphic options, it often excludes it. Dye sublimation equipment is more advanced than ever offering near continuous tone (limited by the texture of the material you choose) and exceptional detail created from high dpi outputs and sophisticated image patterns. Color is permanently dyed into the fabric creating a deep saturated image.

How do tension fabric graphics attach or hang on the frame?

Tension graphics will typically have Velcro sewn into the perimeter, although there are other options such as a pole pocket connection with a spline or a silicon edge. The finish used is dependent on the frame system requirements and or customer preference.

How do pillowcase fabric graphics attach or hang on the frame?

Pillowcase graphics are sewn a seam along the bottom edge of the frame to attach the inner and outer sides of the pillowcase. The top has zippers to secure the two sides with slots made to accommodate eye-bolt or hanging hardware. Depending on the size and shape of the frame, vertical zippers may also be necessary. The seams are sewn to the inside of the pillowcase to create a smooth, fitted finish.

What is the maximum size of a seamless tension graphic? Are there limitations to the maximum print width?

The maximum size depends on the fabric and printing process. In general, the maximum width varies from 118 "to 58" depending on the process.

What is the maximum size of a seamless pillowcase graphic? Are there limitations to the maximum print width?

All pillowcase graphics have seams, usually just at the top and bottom of the structure. However, some frames are too large to cover without a seam. Frames such as a tapered circle need to be pieced because the shape of the print is an arc, making it too large to print in one piece.

How should tension fabric graphics and pillowcase graphics be cared for?

It is recommended that graphics be zipped up, folded, and stored in a bag. You may spot clean by wiping with a damp cloth. If it is necessary to wash the graphic and it is small enough, use a commercial size front-loading washing machine. Wash on the gentle cycle, with cool water. It is VERY important that the graphic be ZIPPED during washing. Dry cleaning is not recommended.

To limit getting the graphic dirty during installation, keep the set-up area clean by using a drop cloth and wash your hands prior to set up. You may want to consider purchasing inexpensive white cotton gloves. Weaving the gloves while handling the graphic will minimize the transfer of dirt and oils to your graphic.

What is the preferred file set up for tension graphics and pillowcase graphics?

Files should be set up with at least 1 inch of bleed on all sides and marked with guides or crop marks to indicate art area versus bleed. The best file formats are Photoshop layered files, InDesign, Illustrator, or Quark documents. Files need to be set up as close to 100 percent as possible with a minimum resolution of 100 dots per inch.

Other things to consider are the live area, the diameter of the frames poles, and borders. If your critical art is too close to the edge of the frame, it may disappear as the graphic bends around the frame. Try to keep critical information 3 to 5 inches from the edge and either make borders wider or do not use borders.

Digital Infrared Photography Pictures Made Easy

Digital infrared photography is a fairly basic photographic technique that yields amazing images. There is a spectrum of light that can not be seen with the human eye, but it can be seen and captured through the lens of your digital camera.

Images captured with this technique have a surreal dreamy look. A picture of a green leafy tree against a bright blue sky taken with digital infrared photography becomes a picture of a brilliant white tree against a dark foreboding backdrop of sky.

This happens because visible light is ignored and only infrared light (light from the spectrum we can not see with the naked eye) is captured. The resulting compositions are stunning. However, the technique is not difficult.

Digital Infrared Photography Equipment

Infrared pictures can be really unique. Here is a resource to learn more about the technique and see samples of what can be done with inferred photography.
A digital photography course is a great way to learn this technique. There are even free digital photo classes offered online [http://www.mydigitalphotoclasses.com/digital-photo-classes.html].

Modern digital cameras differ in their ability to capture infrared light. To test your camera's infrared capabilities, point your television remote control at your digital cameras lens from 6 inches away and press a button on the remote. If you see a light in your camera's LCD coming from your remote, you're in luck. Your camera is capable of digital infrared photography. If you saw no light being emitted from the remote, your camera probably has an internal infrared filter installed by the manufacturer to preserve the camera's ability to focus on images in the normal light spectrum.

Now that you've tested your camera, you need only two additional pieces of equipment: a filter and a tripod. The purpose of the filter is to "filter" out visible light and only let infrared light through. Filters are fairly inexpensive (approximately $ 20). The Hoya R72 filter is one of the more popular filters and can be obtained from your local camera store. If your camera has a thread adapter (most digital cameras do not), you'll also need to purchase an adapter. If your camera does not have a thread adapter, you'll have to get creative to attach the filter. With gelatin filters, it's as simple as cutting the filter to size and taping it to your lens. Your local photography store should be able to help here, too. While you're at the camera store, pickup a tripod also. These are needed due to the increased aperture and reduced shutter speed required for infrared photography.

Shooting Techniques

Once you've got your camera outfitted with an infrared filter, you're ready to go out and shoot. Landscapes with green leafy foliage and a bright sky make the best subjects when starting out. Portraits of people in sunlight also make interesting compositions. Every camera is different so you'll want to experiment with various settings and their effect. Some cameras are capable of taking good digital infrared photography in "automatic" mode, so try that first. However, if "automatic" mode does not yield good results, the following is a list of manual settings to use as a starting point:

  • Flash Off
  • Black & White Mode On
  • Film Speed: ISO 400 (or the highest available)
  • Shutter Speed: 1/15 of a second (slower is better)

Digital infrared photography opens up a whole new world to photographers. With just a few relatively cheap pieces of equipment, you can create stunning compositions from the world of the invisible light spectrum. This article just scratches the surface of what you can do with digital infrared photography . There is so much more that can be done within this area of ​​photography and there is a whole array of other basic photography techniques that yield amazing results. The best way to learn how to take full advantage of your digital camera or expand your photographic skills is by taking a digital photo class. They are a lot of fun and with just a little instruction you can learn how to take amazing pictures.

The Most Important Components of Physical Fitness

There are components of physical fitness which insurance companies and trainers take into account as they are significant to the overall evaluation of health. Basically it is similar to a fine-tuning a racing engine, you would never add diesel to an engine that requires high octane.

When physical trainers measure the fitness of a person they use some components of physical fitness to test against a set standard and to develop goals for further improvement. By incorporating these components of physical fitness you can not only improve your health but also lose weight.

The first of these is muscular strength. This measures the ability of the muscle to exert a maximal force through a range of motion or to a given point. This is measured for a short period of time and usually incorporates the use of weights for evaluation.

As muscular strength varies through the body, you might for instance you have
high muscular strength in your arms while having weaker legs, this component is related to the amount and type of exercise that your body undergoes. Weight training or strength training is the only method to improve strength. One principle of increased muscle mass is that that a larger amount of muscle consumes a greater number of calories, even at rest. By increasing mass you effectively increase the amount of calories needed for your body at rest and will reduce your body fat ratio. Another benefit to strength training is that it will help to maintain your bone structure and decrease your risk of osteoporosis.

The second component is muscular endurance. This reflects to your muscles ability to work through a range of motion over a specific amount of time. This can be measured by the ability to hold a weight for a specific amount of time – say 20 pounds over-head for 5 minutes. Many times this component is measured through push-ups as these are exercises that exert a specific amount of pressure over time. This measures the upper body muscular endurance.

Muscular endurance is often confused with muscular strength because they are related. However they offer different benefits, while using muscular endurance an athlete is able to shovel snow for an hour lifting and moving a sub-maximum amount of snow over a specified amount of time. Muscular strength would have been the ability of the arms and shoulders to lift the maximum amount a couple of times.

The trainer will test muscular endurance while he will also be testing cardiovascular endurance because these two components are closely related. Cardiovascular endurance will reflect how well your heart and lungs work together to supply oxygen to your body, this is also called aerobic fitness. Trainers may use long runs or swims to test cardiac endurance and test muscular endurance at the same time. This is the cornerstone to complete health and fitness. Without cardiovascular endurance you can not improve the rest of your fitness.

Another component is flexibility, this is the ability of a joint to move through its full range of motion and the elasticity of the muscles. Some refer to this as how limber or supple you are, this is a major component of physical fitness and one that is often over looked. Not everyone needs to be as limber as a gymnast but we all need a degree of flexibility to deal with the demands placed on us during our daily lives.

Stretching is associated with flexibility in order to maintain or increase the ability of a joint to stretch further. Maintaining your flexibility is important for protection of your joints and allowing you to strengthen further to protect your back and reduce the pain of arthritis.

The final component of physical fitness is body composition. This is the ratio of lean body mass to fat body mass. This proportion does not refer to your weight in pounds or to your figure but to a measurement against a standard. Women and men have different body composition ratios. Women carry a higher percentage of fat to maintain a developing baby. This does not mean that women are fatter – but that their fat distribution is different.

Your body composition is really more a consequence of your overall fitness. If you have a high body fat mass ratio you are more at risk for coronary heart disease, diabetes, joint and back pain, arthritis, stroke and tendon-muscle accidents.

These components of physical fitness are foundation to physical fitness and the ability of the human body to withstand external forces and internal stress while maintaining health and wellness.

What Can You Do When Your Mind Refuses To Write Your Sales Letter?

You need to write a sales letter but you can not find the words, the harder you try the less comes to mind. In the end you're left miserably staring at a blank piece of paper – What can you do?

Many people have told me that they face this kind of problem when it comes to writing their sales letter. No matter how hard they try and think about writing their letter they just can not seem to get things moving.

It's really frustrating and can happen to us all from time to time but there's a great way to get those ideas flowing and break out from the mental blocks. Let me ask you something first though …

Do you know your product?

I mean really know your product.

You see in order to be able to sell something you really have to know it in intimate detail. For instance how can you sell the benefits of Liposuction without you are a woman who's actually been through the process?

What do you know about it apart from heresay? You do not know whether there's any pain involved or whether there's a special diet you need to eat afterwards.

Do you know what feeling there is immediately after the operation? Do you look into the mirror and see the hour glass figure you were dreaming about before you went for the op, if not how do you feel deep down?

Are there feelings of anger and dismay or is there a deep sense of ecstasy as you look out and see the real you that was hiding inside that tired old body all the time?

Only someone who has really experienced those first fearful glances can honestly tell this with an emotion that rings true.

This is why you have to know every little thing that you can about your product before you sit down and try to write your sales letter.

Knowing and loving your product gives you the burning passion to tell all the world about it and is the first step in overcoming the dreaded blank screen that so many sit in front of for hours on end, unfortunately trying to write their sales letter.

So the first thing you need to do is to get hold of your product and fall in love with it – that means you actually have to go and buy, borrow or test drive it.

Look, you're going to be writing a story form your heart telling me exactly why I should buy your product from you. If you do not know and love it how can you in all truth and honesty tell me to buy it?

Ok, go and get your product, take it in your hands and start to use it. If it's a book read it, if it's a car drive it – Do whatever you have to do to get to know your product in the most minute detail.

Next list the reasons why it'll help me in my life – Will it help me make more money or will it help me get from A – B more quickly and in greater comfort?

How heavy is it? Is it easy to use? Does it have any weaknesses?

List everything down the good and the bad.

You need to understand why and how I will benefit from it, also why I should buy it from you instead of from somebody else.

An easy way to do this is by brainstorming.

The way you do this is to take a blank piece of paper and draw a small cicle in the middle, write your product's name in the middle of the circle.

Now it's time for you to get the magic going!

Look at the name of your product and write the very first thing that comes into your mind down on the paper.

Draw a line radiating out from the circle and write your thought at the end of that line.

Do not think or worry about spellling, just write. As Soon as you've finished writing one thought another will be there, draw another line and write that thought down also.

Soon you'll have so many thoughts hitting you that you will not be able to keep up – Just keep on going until you have nothing left inside your head.

This is such a stimulating exercise that it'll often leave you panting for breath!

Once you've finished all you need to do is look at what you've written and make a list of all the great ideas you have. List them in order of importance.

Now you have the outline for your letter.

Use the most important reason on the list, the main reason why I should buy your product (this is the largest benefit of your product) and turn this into a sensational headline.

Allow the ideas on the list to flow into your sales letter using sub-headlines when you need to emphasize a point, soon your letter will have almost written itself.

Finally, when you write your letter remember to only write it to one person at a time – make it personal!

That's it for now, go and grab your product, fall in love with it and start to list the reasons why I should buy it.

Go on do it Now!

Copyright 2006 Stuart Elliott