All Posts By

Jackie Atkin

ArtPrize Eight: A Story About Color

We’re intrigued by color, and that’s no surprise. From starting conversations to subconsciously moving people to make decisions, color inspires and motivates people on a daily basis. As a company, we want to help our customers understand this impact. Through our work with artists, designers, brand owners, and manufacturers, we define and control color, and this event was a great opportunity to showcase this passion.


That’s part of the reason we get so involved in ArtPrize as sponsors, volunteers, and visitors. ArtPrize always brings color to the forefront by executing it in unique, functional, and interesting ways, and this year was no different.

Once again we were on the scene, offering fun ways to explore the role color plays in all of our lives. Here are some of the ways we observed, discussed, and interacted with color at ArtPrize Eight.

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Managing Background & Substrate Color in Production

Artprize Eight PosterPassionate about color? We are too.

As a company that prides itself on its color knowledge and enthusiasm, X-Rite Pantone is excited about the various ways ArtPrize showcases the power of color.

Each fall, ArtPrize installs over 1000 works of art in downtown Grand Rapids, attracting thousands of visitors. By using consistent colors in its guides, signs, banners, flags, and merchandise, ArtPrize creates a colorful map that helps both visitors and locals see the city through a different perspective.

For most companies, this color consistency doesn’t come easily. Whether you’re color activating the most attended art event in the world, printing labels for a major brand, or mixing plastic pellets to manufacture a toy car, inconsistent color can cause consumers to question quality and can affect brand integrity.

Today we’ll look at why background and substrate color matters, and how ArtPrize successfully managed this variable in production.

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X-Rite Pantone Sponsors ArtPrize Eight

ArtPrize®, the nation’s largest art competition, begins today. As a leadership sponsor and a proud Grand Rapids-based company, we are honored to contribute to this creative and inspiring community event.

ArtPrize attracts artists from around the world who use a mix of colors, textures, and substrates to express themselves in unique ways. Their creations, often demonstrating the color challenges that color professionals have in their plants or print shops, are installed indoors and outdoors throughout Grand Rapids venues. ArtPrize then engages the public by including them in the voting process – a concept that has been recognized as the most-attended public art event on the planet by The Art Newspaper, and was recently highlighted in The New York Times’ 52 Places To Go in 2016. The fact that it all takes place just steps away from our world headquarters makes ArtPrize even more special to us.

Guiding attendees to over 170 venues in downtown Grand Rapids, the 2016 Pantone Pathways act as a colorful roadmap for color-loving attendees.

Guiding attendees to over 170 venues in downtown Grand Rapids, the 2016 Pantone Pathways act as a colorful roadmap for color-loving attendees.

Color, a key ingredient in art, creates both conscious and subconscious emotional connections. It affects how we select the products we buy, the foods we eat, and the even the venues we frequent. As the global leader in the art and science of color, it’s our responsibility to deconstruct this connection so we can understand how color (or the lack of) inspires us.

Every day we help artists, designers, brand owners, and manufacturers define and control color. From our presence at the largest printing equipment exhibition in the world, Drupa, to our upcoming involvement the world’s premier fair for the plastics and rubber industry, K 2016, we’ve had the opportunity to present our leading innovations to many countries and industries.

As a sponsor of ArtPrize Eight, we’re thrilled to share how this passion for color extends further than tradeshows and office walls. We’ll be on the scene, offering fun ways to inspire and explore the role color plays in YOUR life.

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Even graffiti removal needs a little color measurement

Walking through the streets of Los Angeles, it’s no secret that graffiti is a huge problem. According to LA Weekly, graffiti-removal requests have increased by 64 percent in the last five years. City Administrative Officer Miguel Santana says that by June the Board of Public Works had already recorded 141,000 requests for the 2015-16 fiscal year, compared to 86,000 in 2010-11.

Image courtesy of

Image courtesy of

Graffiti a big problem that is continuing to grow, but color measurement solutions from X-Rite are helping.

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“Meet our Color Experts” Series… Tim Mouw

Tim Mouw is our Manager of Applications Engineering & Technical Support for the Americas. Tim is so knowledgeable about the impact of color in many industries, and his stories always intrigue us.

Tim has authored many X-Rite Pantone blogs, including:

What is metamerism, and why should you care?

Effective ways to measure reflective surfaces

What’s sabotaging your sustainability efforts?

5 color evaluation pitfalls to avoid

Why is controlling color so hard?

We recently sat down with him to learn more about his background in color and his insights about helping our customers control it.

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Interesting Things our Customers Measure with Spectros

Whether it’s using Munsell Color Standards or one of our many color measurement devices, X-Rite helps manufacturers around the world achieve accurate color. We talked to our support team to learn about some of the most interesting ways people have used our equipment to measure and control color. From archeologists to fur traders and gastroenterologists, here are a few of our favorites.

In 2014, the city of Los Angeles used one of our handheld spectrophotometers to help remove more than 37 million square feet of graffiti. Instead of chipping a paint sample to take to the paint supplier or warehouse, contractors measured the color of the background and used the color data to mix the perfect color to repaint the surface.

LA Graffiti

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A few of our favorite experiences from drupa 2016

drupa 2016 was such a success! It’s not often we get to spend so much time talking one-on-one with our customers from around the world, and we enjoyed every minute!

drupa 2016

We met so many wonderful people and learned so many things. Although it’s hard to pick, here are a few of our favorite experiences from drupa 2016.

drupa 2016

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Color As You Imagined It: drupa 2016

Drupa starts tomorrow, and we couldn’t be more excited!

This year X-Rite Pantone is teaming up with our partners Esko, Enfocus, and MediaBeacon to showcase a number of innovations around digital color communication. The move to digital can make a big impact on a company’s bottom line… read our recent blog to learn how.

Covering 900-square meters in Hall 8b, stand A23, our booth includes six print and packaging inspiration zones that walk visitors through an ideal color workflow, from color inspiration through final product. Each zone features innovative solutions and practical applications that demonstrate the easiest and most effective way to manage color.

Read on for a sneak peek of our booth so you know what to expect, and can plan your visit accordingly.

The main part of our 900m2 booth will consist of eight Inspiration Zones that will take you through each step of a typical print and packaging production workflow.

The main part of our 900m2 drupa booth will consist of eight Inspiration Zones that will take you through each step of a typical print and packaging production workflow.

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Pay attention to color innovations. It’s important!

From May 31 to June 10, nineteen exhibition halls in Düsseldorf, Germany will come to life for the print industry’s leading global trade fair – drupa. Those who are lucky enough to attend will get to see and experience new color technologies and innovative concepts. X-Rite Pantone will be among the exhibitors, showcasing our latest print and packaging solutions. Since we know not everyone will be able to attend this event, we’ll keep you updated on what’s happening here, on the blog.

Digital model of X-Rite Pantone’s booth at drupa.

Digital model of X-Rite Pantone’s booth at drupa.

Digital color is one of the key innovations that will be highlighted at drupa. Making an impact on your bottom line is only one of the benefits to this technology – buzzwords like, “faster – cheaper – more efficient – less waste” are also becoming easier than ever to attain.

We’ve consulted our color experts to understand the key benefits of moving toward a digital color workflow. Read on learn whether it’s time for you to make the upgrade to better color.

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How to Combat Counterfeiting with Color Control

Real or fake? When it comes to medicating children, consumers need to know the products they choose are genuine.

Real or fake? When it comes to medicating children, consumers need to know the products they choose are genuine.

When you hear the word counterfeiting, do you automatically think of counterfeit money? Unfortunately counterfeiting goes much farther than that. It’s impacting just about every industry worldwide. It is a huge problem for product integrity and results in financial loss. Estimates put counterfeited and pirated goods at some 2 to 2.5% of world trade, with a value of $600 billion or more.

Counterfeiting can damage a brand’s image. Apparel, pharmaceuticals, pesticides, electronics, cosmetics, tobacco, sports merchandising and footwear have all been subject to counterfeit activity over the past few years. Not only is the rate of counterfeiting growing each year, so are the number products involved.

Counterfeiting can also lead to health concerns for consumers. Foods like cooking oils, olives, and baby food, wines and spirits, healthcare and personal care products, medicines, aircraft and automotive components, and critical electrical safety components are all targets. Some products have even been found to contain injurious or toxic components.We heard of one case where counterfeited tablets were actually coated with road paint to achieve a similar color!

As you can imagine, the Internet marketplace is making counterfeiting even easier. Luckily, there are a number of other ways packaging design and color management technology can help. We had the opportunity to sit down with Cliff Crosfield, an independent, freelance consultant in brand protection, anti-counterfeiting and packaging, to discuss these issues.

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