January 22, 2012

Look ma, real rock!

Working at Spangler Associates, I had the opportunity to design one of my favorite collateral projects ever. In a time when printed communications were a priority and budgets high, this collateral suite for Metlife Capital was a case-study in printing bells and whistles. The front cover of the folder was a photographic image of a section of stone, embossed with a sculptured die that followed the actual surface features of the photograph. It felt like you were touching a rock surface, the craftmanship was quite amazing.

Sculptured embossing dies are created partly through a chemical etching process, but the artistry is achieved through the work of an engraver, who creates the relief by tooling the metal by hand. It’s almost a lost art in the digital age.

Aside from 4-color process printing, other effects included silver metallic and dark gray Pantone inks, spot gloss varnish and a dry trap dull varnish. The images were printed with silver and gloss varnish in the highlight areas, 4-color process, dark gray and dull varnish in the shadow areas, which made for a beautiful, rich effect.

Metlife Capital brochure