Kili Arts has installed an Epson SureColor SC-F6000 44-inch digital dye sublimation printer to produce its new range of high quality ChromaLuxe photographic prints. The company has owned an Epson Stylus Pro 9890 44-inch large format printer for 2 years, which it uses to print its fine art, photographic, canvasses and Giclee prints. This latest SureColor investment has enabled Kili Arts to expand its product range into metal HD prints, which has resulted in a significant increase in production and overall profit of 60% since installation earlier this year.
Specialising in bespoke large format printing and framing, Slough-based Kili Arts produces acrylic and canvas prints, Gicleé Fine Art prints, metal HD prints, multi canvasses and collages, and also offers custom-made cut mount, framing and lamination services. The company is owned by East West Photography Ltd, an Asian wedding and events photography company founded in 2001 by Gurwinder Singh Soor & Jagdeep Singh Panesar. It is through the photographic side of the business that Kili Arts has developed.
Photographer and Director, Jagdeep Panesar says: “We used external suppliers for all East West Photography’s printing needs for a number of years but were often disappointed with the inconsistent results. We are extremely passionate about delivering the highest quality service to our clients so we reviewed our options and that’s where the idea of starting up our own printing side of the business came from.”
The company purchased its first large format printer – an Epson Stylus Pro 9890 - in 2013 to print its clients’ photographs onto fine art paper and canvasses. It was a visit to Photokina in 2014, where they saw the Epson SureColor SC-F6000 dye sublimation roll-fed printer demonstrated printing onto ChromaLuxe metal panels that persuaded them to look at further investment in the print business. Jagdeep says: “Epson were printing images on the SureColor SC-F6000 dye sub printer that were then infused directly into the ChromaLuxe specially coated sheets of metal to create the most vibrant and stunning photographic prints. The detail and resolution was exceptional and we could see that our images would be perfect for such an application. We were convinced it was something that our customers would be enthusiastic about.”
Kili Arts bought its SureColor SC-F6000 from large format print solutions specialists and approved Epson reseller Perfect Colours in January 2015. “Perfect Colours were great,” says Jagdeep. “They gave us a lot of advice and support and handled everything before, during and after installation. Their training, support and aftercare is invaluable.”
Durable and robust, the SureColor SC-F6000 is ideal for low-to-medium volume work and has been developed to support an extensive range of applications such as soft signage, interior décor, textile and garment printing. It offers a low total cost of ownership and, with every component designed and manufactured by Epson, quality, performance and reliability are all optimised for maximum productive uptime and profit.
The company also invested in a Sefa 1510 heat press to print onto ChromaLuxe metal panels. Jagdeep says: “We started off printing small 6 x 4-inch prints at first and sent them out to our clients as gifts. They loved them and were blown away by the colour quality and detail.” Shortly after, the orders started coming in for larger sizes and the business took off.
Jagdeep says: “The printer installation went very smoothly. The SureColor SC-F6000 is exceptionally easy to use, with fast media loading and easy set-up and has proved to be an extremely reliable piece of kit. We can’t fault it.”
Kili Arts has recently been commissioned by local schools to produce new imagery for its healthy eating campaign - images have been printed onto 60 x 40-inch metal panels using the SureColor SC-F6000. Jagdeep says: “We took in a few sample panels to show the print quality. When the schools saw the exceptional colour and the sharp detail of the images and realised how long lasting and durable the prints would be, they asked us to replace all the original canvasses which were poor quality and faded.”
Although still early days, Jagdeep is delighted with the SureColor SC-F6000: “This investment has opened up a whole new creative market for us - not just new business, it has also enabled us to expand our service offering to our wedding and event photography clients to give them a truly bespoke service. I’m certain we couldn’t have progressed the print business in such a short space of time without the SureColor SC-F6000 dye sub printer – we wouldn’t be without it.”
With an eye to the future, Kili Arts is looking to expand its service to offer customised textile printing with items such as t-shirts, bags, promotional products and interior décor items, to the consumer and commercial markets.
[Image shows: Jagdeep Singh Panesar, Kili Arts, with his Epson SureColor SC-F6000 dye sublimation printer]