When Macro Art decided to break its own 2010 Guinness World Record for the largest film poster ever made, it looked to Caldera to provide the key ingredients.
Creating the 3234.31sq m poster required the use of the company’s EFI VUTEk GS5000 UV-curable 5m roll-to-roll engine in order to print the 4.8 x 18m panels. Caldera’s GrandRip+ software played an integral role in this, splitting the artwork – for Akshay Kumar’s Bollywood film ‘Boss’ – into 36 different sections before being sent to the printer.
“The software has an excellent tiling module and can intelligently nest multiple jobs for efficiency,” states Adam McMonagle, technical advisor at Macro Art. “We have six workstations running the software so that Pre-press departments can operate identically to each other.
“We originally had a series of RIPs from a number of companies and realised that there was no consistency. By implementing Caldera as our main RIP we not only have more control but colour consistency and a workflow.”
As an earlier effort for the Paralympic Games, which measured 90 x 60m, was disqualified due to being assembled from smaller panels, each section had to be printed separately and then welded together.
“Guinness required that the print was an advertising poster and was in one piece when finished,” McMonagle continues. “Our Fiab highfrequency welding table, at 28m long, is perfect to handle very large prints that need welding together.
“In reality, size is not an issue until it is finished into one piece. Floor space is required, as well as manpower to lift the material, but in the end it wasn’t much more of a challenge to produce than the first one.”
The poster was edited at 10 percent of its actual size using Adobe Photoshop, before being scaled up 1,000 percent using Caldera’s software. Macro Art were able to print the poster in 30 hours on the GS5000, meaning that the record attempt did not interfere with the company’s regular work.
“We use all of the software and hardware that was required for the poster every day for all of our projects,” explains McMonagle. “Our previous World Record was printed on our HP Scitex, which is much slower and outputs at half the resolution.
“The five-metre GS was chosen for this attempt as it could handle the printing over one weekend. Time and logistics were a vital consideration, as we had to allow for the machine to be free to print the panels alongside our busy day schedule.”
When it came to materials, the company opted for a PVC mesh, which allowed for welding, as well as retaining air flow – a necessity for work designed to be displayed outdoors. “A PVC mesh was the only choice due to weight considerations and strength,” says McMonagle. “Once the pieces are welded together it can be strong enough to hang from a building if required.”
The poster weighed 1,270kg and required 40 staff to transfer the printed poster onto a pallet for transportation. The poster was held down with 250 pegs, ensuring that the poster remained at its full size for the verification, with an independent surveyor as well as the Guinness representative required to ensure that the size claimed by the company was accurate.
Following its acceptance into the record books, the poster was shipped to Akshay Kumar’s Indian fan club, who had commissioned the poster to help promote the film’s release.
While the project might have led to the company might have broken its own record, McMonagle remains unsure as to whether Macro Art will make another attempt in the future: “We don’t actively look for these projects, but people are aware that we are probably they only company in the country capable of doing this – so watch this space.”