News From the Foil Stamping Front
Monaghan also notes the increase in using holograms on paperback covers. "With the cost of holographic paper coming down so dramatically," he offers, "it is more economical in a lot of situations to mask out the hologram with printing inks and just let the hologram shine through in certain areas than it would be to foil stamp."
"We've been making more holograms for book covers in the past year and a half than we have in the past three years," says Glazer. That's good news for publishers who are facing the issue of returns, he explains, since, with the reduced cost of technology, it is now possible to manufacture more of them and still make a profit.
Another trend, according to Richard Zeller, product manager at Foilmark, Newburyport, MA, is overprinting done with four-color transparent inks on top of foil. Zeller also observes an increase in use of the rotary hot stamping process and diffraction and edge-guilding foils.
Monaghan adds to the list the implementation of digital technologies in manufacturing holograms for the book industry. Where a typical hologram or foil stamping process would involve one to seven days to produce a 6 x 6' hologram master, he says, with digital technologies, it is possible to produce a 30 x 40' one in a matter of hours. The whole process is faster, he notes, and renders perfect registration. Typically, in the past, he says, to make a hologram, one had to make a small prototype conventionally and then copy and repeat it to create a pattern. With digital technologies, all that can be done electronically, saving both time and money.
All three companies have new products. Within the last year, Crown Roll Leaf has come up with Retail Vision, a combination of hologram and surface-diffracting design which works in any lighting conditions, even the fluorescent lighting usually found in retail stores.