Thursday, October 30, 2008

MacBook vs MacBook Pro

If you are like me, you covet any new product that Apple releases. Unless you truly have expendable income, you have to wonder sometimes if it is worth the hefty price tag that some of their products carry.

The folks at Gizmodo did some independent testing to compare the graphic capabilities of the new MacBook Pro vs the standard MacBook. It looks like MacBook Pro blew away the processing time of the standard MacBook. As all you creative people know, nothing can stifle productivity better than slow graphics rendering.

MacBook vs MacBook Pro: Hardcore Graphics Death Match

Here they are, the MacBook and MacBook Pro graphics benchmarks you've been waiting for. Our basic Mac-only benchmarks used in our dual review were great at showing how close the CPU performance was, but not great at illustrating the disparity between chunky-hunky 9600 GT and the comparatively weak integrated 9400M that we saw firsthand while playing Spore. With a little time, we've been able to:
• Install Windows XP and run 3D Mark
• Play a little Crysis—yeah, Crysis
• Get ahold of Adobe CS4 and run some rendering jobs
The conclusion? If you're a serious gamer or work with graphics of any kind and you need an Apple laptop, you're gonna want the MacBook Pro. Here are the raw numbers to prove it.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Vinyl banners: High impact, low cost advertising

Large format vinyl banners are a great way of advertising just about any news you would like announce to a large audience. They are a versatile solution for creating an ad campaign that can convey a big message at a low price.

Banners can be customized any way you would like. With digital output, you have the option of creating your own graphics and layout design. Advances in printing technology now gives you the opportunity to use images with photo-like print quality, as well as text, to convey your message.

Many banners are used for indoor advertising or trade booth graphics, and may never see the light of day. Vinyl is a very durable and flexible material that can withstand heavy exposure from the elements, making them perfect for outdoor use. They can last for a very long time spanning from several months to up to few a years. One of the best features about vinyl banners is that they can be mobile billboards for your business - just roll it up and hit the road. They also do not require much space for storage, and can be easily kept on a shelf for future use at trade shows or for seasonal events.

In order to make your advertising more effective, consider using some of these printing strategies when designing your banner;

Where will your banner be displayed?

This is one of the first thing that you should ask yourself when you are creating your banner. It will tell you how large you can create the banner to maximize your given space, it will also help you effectively plan the right design to complement that space. For example, if you are placing your banner outside make sure the colors of your banner do not blend with the background. You need to use colors that will stand out and are easy to read.

You should also make use of the size of your banners. The bigger you banner, the farther your audience reach will be, and the more people you will be able to broadcast your message to. You can maximize this trait by making your banners carry a very large headline. A large headline plus the big size of the banners means that your banners can appear bigger than it really is.

Is your message is easily recognized

Keep your layout simple. Your marketing materials need to be easily understood. They should be grasped while the prospective customer is just passing by your advertisement. Since banners are usually large materials, you can exploit this characteristic by using bold colors, large images, or large headlines that will attract and hold attention.

Text or graphics?

Speaking of large headlines, while fonts are an important advertising tool, there are times when using the right image can grab your audience's attention and be just as influential. Imagery can also help convey and establish your company's brand. This should be considered during the planning stage of your banner creation. You may need to hire a photographer to shoot your product, or search through stock image agencies to find the right look for your ad. Keep in mind the target audience that you are trying to reach. If you do choose to use graphics, make sure that it helps the message to be more effective. Everything on your ad must help the message be understood clearly by your target market.

Will the call to action be heard?

Your call to action is extremely important in your every marketing tool, including this one. Tell your audience what you want them to do. Tell them how they can help in fulfilling the goals of your ads.

Most importantly, once you have grabbed their attention and motivated them to take action, be sure that your contact information is clearly displayed. Give them various ways to reach you. They must be able to contact you by whatever means that are available to them.

So if you have not yet utilized vinyl banners as part of your marketing strategies, now is the time to start. A well designed banner has a small impact on your marketing budget, and a big impact for your marketing message. Please contact a Mighty Imaging representative for more information on vinyl banner printing.

Friday, October 24, 2008

And the winner is...Christine Taft

Third time is a charm for Christine Taft. For the third year in a row, Christine has placed in the Arizona State Fair photography competition. This year, continuing the three theme, three of her images were selected. First Light, Living Water, and Signature Rose (seen here) each placed. The annual competition receives hundreds of submissions from all over the state. For Christine to have multiple pictures accepted three years in a row is a quite an accomplishment. Congratulations Christine! Your ribbon wall has to be getting full.

Christine's award winning photos will be on display at the Arizona State Fair Grounds through November 2nd (closed Mondays). You can own one of these winning pictures yourself, all the images seen here are also available for purchase on Christine's gallery.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Rick Scuteri Goes Nationwide...Again!

Hats off (or should we say helmets) to one of our favorite customers, Rick Scuteri; for his amazing shot of Georgia tailback, Knowshon Moreno. And, if you think we’re biased, just ask Sports Illustrated.

S.I. ran with Rick’s image, instead of their own, for a multi-page spread on the Univ. of Georgia football team as they defeated our ASU Sun Devils this past month. Rick captured the shot using the world class Canon Mark 2N with a 70 to 200mm lens. As the local Reuters photographer here in Phoenix, Rick doesn’t just pick a spot and stay there. Oh no, he is always on the move, going from end zone to end zone up and down the sideline, always near the action with a nose for the ball. In fact, his performance is no different than the athletes he’s covering.

This hundred percent effort has allowed Rick to capture images that often times are wished for but rarely photographed. If you’d like to see what real talent looks like then click on to Rick’s website and see the best of the best in front of, and behind the camera.

Way to go Rick!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Fall art festivals

Since the weather is thankfully out of the what feels like eternal triple digit heat here in Arizona, there are numerous art festivals popping up across the Valley. A perfect opportunity to get out and support the local art scene, and possibly find an excellent one of a kind gift for the holiday season that is rapidly approaching. posted a listing of some of the upcoming festivals through December.

Valley art festivals: Kellie Hwang

Shopping for holiday gifts is not always an easy task, which is one reason generic gift cards are often seen as a solution.

But if you really want to find something unique for your sweetheart or your mother (or yourself), while also enjoying a day out with the family, take in one of these Valley arts festivals:

Friday, October 17, 2008

Film ain't dead yet!

This month Eastman Kodak is doing the unthinkable; bringing to market a new and improved professional film. Now we all agree that digital photography is the coolest thing since canned beer, but there was a time when if you wanted to capture unprecedented detail with remarkably vivid color you just grabbed a roll of Ektar film from the fridge.

According to Mary Jane Hellyar an executive vice president with Eastman Kodak,
“This new film with ISO 100 speed, high saturation and ultra-vivid colors offers the finest, smoothest grain of any color negative film available today.”

We here at Mighty Imaging agree with Mary Jane when she says that photography has always been about capturing a moment or story and sharing it with just a few or with the world. However we have learned that when it comes to big prints or fine art it is often the smallest details that mark the difference between a good photograph and one that stands out and becomes memorable and more importantly sell able.

Ektar 100, scheduled for October availability, is geared for commercial photographers and advanced armatures for applications such as nature, travel, fashion and product photography where the emphasis is often on color and for photographers who need extraordinary enlargement capability when scanning and printing.

So the next time that you see a big print that seems to jump off the wall and capture your attention ask yourself, what’s film got to do with it? You just might be surprised.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Custom wall coverings make a big impact

Savvy designers are discovering the potential in custom wall coverings. Not only for corporate users, but also for home decor. The versatility of the product combined with the designer's vision make the possibilities endless.

This wall covering was designed by LA Digital Graphics for a Paul Mitchell salon studio in San Francisco. They used a self adhesive vinyl product for this installation.

Digital wallpaper also offers the same freedom for customization. Designers are able to work directly with their client to create a one of a kind setting that is unique to their taste.

Excerpt from the November issue of Digital Graphics magazine article by Sharla Sikes
Why Not Wallpaper?

Digitally printed wall coverings offer a lot of advantages over traditional wallpaper, which helps to drive their growing popularity.

"You can offer short-run customization without the huge expense of setup. Machine printing is extremely expensive in that world, and they have to do larger runs. It's more cost effective to do it digitally. With new technology we now have permanent inks and eco-friendly products - that's a big thing now," says Kirsh...[Aaron Kirsch of Aztek Wallcoverings Inc. uses a UV curable printer similar to ours at Mighty Imaging.]

Traditional wallpaper is more limited in terms of design. With digitally produced murals or wall coverings, the customer and designer can work together to create not just a design but an environment that reflects the look and feel the customer wants.

Monday, October 13, 2008

James Cowlin hits the road

For anyone who has had the pleasure of seeing James Cowlin's images of Historic US Route 89, then you know why Jim dedicates so much of his time to preserve the beauty and wonder that this 1800 mile stretch of road has to offer. James has spent countless hours bringing awareness to his project through his website, lectures, but perhaps most effectively through his stunning pictures. If a picture is worth a thousand words, then these speak volumes.

A new show featuring images taken during his 2007 trip will be on display in Salt Lake City beginning this Friday. Good luck to James! We were happy to help out.

I am please to announce that I will be exhibiting recent photographs from the US Route 89 project at Saans Gallery in Salt Lake City. The opening of the show is Friday, October 17th, during the Salt Lake City Gallery Stroll from 6 to 9 pm. Included in the exhibit are eight large prints of the 2007 Pictures of the Year and four large prints from my travels in 2008. The show continues through November 15th.

If you live in the Salt Lake City area or are planning to be there next week, I would also like to invite you as a member of the US Route 89 Appreciation Society to a pre-opening event on Thursday, October 16th. I will be in the gallery to talk about the photographs and the US Route 89 project from 7 to 8 pm. I would enjoy meeting any of you who can be there.

Here are links to websites for more information:

James Cowlin's US Route 89 2007 Pictures of the Year: <>

Saans Downtown: <>

Salt Lake City Gallery Stroll: <>

As always, take the slow road and enjoy your journey as much as the destination.

Jim Cowlin

To see more of Jim's images you can also check out his gallery on our Shop for Art page.

Friday, October 10, 2008

Terry Connett and Michael Greene added to Shop for Art Gallery

We are pleased to announce the addition of two more very talented photographers to our Shop for Art Gallery.

Terry Connett has a background in real estate and commercial photography, but also found time to create some beautiful fine art photography on a variety of subjects.
After leaving the real estate industry a couple of years ago he formed Terry Connett Photography to continue his passion for photographing commercial and residential real estate properties, as well as corporate executives, brokers, and employees, for assignments that include magazine articles, advertising, brochures, company functions, and just about anything in the business world requiring a photograph.

Michael Greene has a passion for landscape photography. He captures the raw beauty that nature has to offer.
My motive as a photographer is to capture a fleeting moment in the mysteries of the wilds – when nature is at its most intimate and precious state – exposing it for its imperfections, complexities, and rugged power – all while embellishing it for its serenity and incredible beauty.

Both artists have beautiful pictures available for purchase. There are so many amazing images to choose from, any of them would be a great addition to your decor. Check them out!

Thursday, October 09, 2008

Neschen doubles down!

The Neschen brand name has been known as much for its innovation as it has for its quality products. If you have been interested in big prints, graphics for retail display, or fine art, then you surely are aware of their superior mounting and laminating products.

Neschen has just introduced an improved PVC-coated media for banners, trade-show exhibits and double-sided graphics applications. The new SolvoTex PVC Standard Blockout is a 100 percent polyester media with a PVC coating on both sides.

What’s really cool about this product is that it has a true 100 percent opaque block-out liner that allows for double-sided printing with none of the shadows or bleed through that we’ve all come to expect. Best of all, that disappointing washed out look is a thing of the past.

The next time you want your graphics to go BIG, double down with Neschen products. Exclusively found at only the best large format printers like Mighty Imaging.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Photographer's survival guide

The local ASMP chapter will be holding a seminar this Thursday that could not be more timely. The 3 hour seminar entitled The Photographer's Survival Guide (for Today's Market) will be given by portfolio and marketing consultants Suzanne Sease and Amanda Sosa Stone. They will touch on many aspects of what can make your photographic business flourish, even in times like these.

The seminar will be held at Legend City Studios at 521 West Van Buren Street in downtown Phoenix, this Thursday October 9th. Registration and social hour is at 5:30 PM, with the seminar beginning at 6:30 PM. If you wish to attend, you can see all the details for the event here.

This program is for all levels of photographers — those who are just starting and those who have been in the business for years and want to take it to the next level. The program is a 2-hour presentation and each participant will receive a "Survivor's Guide." The Guide covers everyday photography business basics to those uncomfortable "what do I do" moments in our industry.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Steve Ferguson's art at the Herberger Theater

The Herberger Theater in downtown Phoenix, besides being a haven for preforming arts, also promotes visual art through their Steel Pavilion Art Gallery. We had a small part in the latest exhibit Imprimatur opening up tomorrow evening. Steve Ferguson is one of the artists featured in the show. We made a large print of his image Restrained and then mounted it to plexiglas. The small thumbnail here does not do it justice. It is an impressive piece. The Steel Pavilion Art Gallery is open during the week, even if there is not a performance being held. Steve's piece will be on display until January 4th of 2009. Stop by the Herberger to see a great show, or just to see the art.

Arrive early for a performance and visit our Art Gallery. Each quarter we feature the creative and inspiring work of Arizona artists. A portion of the proceeds from each piece sold benefits the Herberger Theater Center.

The Art Gallery is open for viewing: 10am - 5pm, Monday through Friday through the Box Office, one hour before and during performances (including weekends), by appointment.

For information or to purchase a piece of artwork, contact Laurene Austin at (602) 254-7399 x105