Illustrator gets creative at Hybrid with new Mimaki UV flatbeds

Illustrator and University of Huddersfield Graphic Design Course Leader, Brent Hardy-Smith has a raft of Mimaki technology at his hands when he needs to assist students with bringing their creative concepts to life through the medium of print. A devoted fan of the innovative brand’s LED UV technology (read more here) he uses the university’s UJF-3042 A3 flatbed to demonstrate everything from core colour principles right through to empowering students with competition entries, portfolio pieces and artistic work that helps them push their creative boundaries.

Keen to trial Mimaki’s latest 2.5D printing capabilities, Hardy-Smith visited UK and Ireland Mimaki distributor, Hybrid Services for a workshop session with the company’s showroom technician, Ashley Carr. “The opportunity to put the new JFX200-2513EX through its paces was too good to miss,” claimed Hardy-Smith. “I’d always wanted to see how my designs worked at a larger scale, so having an 8’ x 4’ flatbed to play with allowed me to think bigger than ever before.”

Utilising fine details, splashes of highlight colour, intricate patterns to be picked out with Mimaki’s clear ink and complex textures, Hardy-Smith’s designs offer the ideal test bed for putting the new flatbed through its paces. “We used a range of substrates, from metallic vinyl to clear sheets of acrylic to print to and with the new 2.5D feature, found the software easy to build up multiple layers to create textures,” he stated.

Brent Hardy-Smith’s Mistlethrush illustration printed directly to brass makes great use of the multi-layer capabilities of the Mimaki LED UV flatbeds as well as the clear ink.

“It was a pleasure to welcome Brent to our showroom and see how formidable a creative tool the new Mimaki printers are,” said Hybrid’s Chief Operations Manager, Brett Newman. “Ash’s ability to get the most out of the printers combined with Brent’s stunning artwork delivered some spectacular results.”

The new Mimaki JFX200-2513EX is a powerful addition to the market leading JFX200 Series, offering new workflow and performance benefits in the popular 8’x 4’ bed size. With increased speed when printing with white ink and new creative tools, such as the 2.5D print workflow for easily creating complex textures that make use of Mimaki’s clear ink, the ‘EX’ model is the most adept flatbed in its class. The University of Huddersfield’s art, design and architecture faculty has recently moved to the striking new £30million Barbara Hepworth building on its Western Campus, with a suite of Mimaki UV and textile printers that serve students from a range of courses.

“Being able to take print samples back to my students that further demonstrated the power of print made the day especially fulfilling,” concluded Hardy-Smith. “Without great output, designs will forever stay in the software or on the sketchpad. We combined design, technical know-how and cutting-edge print hardware to deliver some really memorable work.”