5 Ways to Animate Your Brand
News Views & How-To's
Anime Impulse display with the artist and others

Ask Angelyn 5 Ways to Animate Your Brand

Showcasing your brand with a variety of print products is an important step in getting your company’s offerings noticed. Recently I worked with a small-business student artist along with a member of Impulse MGS to help the artist showcase her brand. We developed merchandise and arranged a photo op and activation set at the Anime Impulse show held last September in Orange County, California.


Jennifer Lee of Cloverleaf Pie, and Ryan Field, a member of Impulse MGS, Anime Impulse’s team, worked with me to help set up the activation. Using digital printers from Roland DGA, we were able to bring her illustrations to life.


I’ve listed below some of the elements we included in this activation that you may be able to try with your own brand or small business.


Merchandise that speaks to your brand


To showcase Jennifer’s brand, we made prints, stickers, sticker books, and even coasters. We printed the covers of the sticker books, testing both a vinyl application from the VersaSTUDIO BN-20A desktop printer/cutter, and a direct-to-object print on a Roland DG UV benchtop flatbed printer, in Roland DGA’s Irvine, California, demo room. 



Jennifer’s comments: Personally, the coasters and large prints were my favorite! Being able to see the process of the coasters being made was super cool. In fact, getting a sample acrylic plate from Roland DGA at the Bay Area Anime Impulse in July was what got me so interested in their printers in the first place! Seeing the cut acrylic being printed using the benchtop UV printer with colored and white ink was inspiring.


As for the large prints, I loved feeling the textures created with the gloss overlay. These were produced on the TrueVIS LG-540 UV printer/cutter by layering embossed gloss ink. It really brought the illustrations to life and made them feel extra special.

Large-scale cutouts

We printed out the large-scale cutouts on a VersaOBJECT CO Series UV flatbed printer. To ensure that the characters wouldn't lose resolution, they were all drawn at a relatively large scale (35 x 35 at 300dpi). Jennifer had considered creating them in vector but felt that drawing them manually allowed her to keep the hand-drawn quality she enjoys in her work. 


The cat was too big to be drawn in one file, much less be printed properly on one panel. To combat this, the cat was drawn separately from the rock he was sitting on so we could tape them together, which created more of a 3D effect as well. 




Jennifer’s comments: To create even more depth, I proposed that the fishing poles be made from actual sticks, so visitors could fish with the animals. We even matched the color of the fishing line to the dark blue of the character outlines. The magic we created in this project was a result of excellent teamwork and coordination throughout the process.


Interactive and immersive experiences

We really wanted to create an immersive photo booth experience for Con-goers, so Jennifer and her partner Austin proposed that we turn the set into a fishing experience. We also had an instructional floor graphic on the booth’s carpet so that attendees knew right away how to interact with the booth. We used Wall Flair Vinyl, which we carry in the Rolanddga.com store. This vinyl is perfect for temporary applications.



Jennifer’s comments:As mentioned earlier, visitors were given fishing poles to use to fish with the rest of the animals. A stool was also hidden behind a printed rock standee allowing people to sit with the animals. Austin and I would take turns carrying an ice box around filled with a variety of printed vinyl fish stickers that we produced on the BN-20A for people to choose from after taking their photo so they could take home a catch of the day.’


Of course, it wasn't required for people to use the fishing poles if they didn't want to; some larger groups would sit in the pond and be the fish for the animals instead.

Floor and wall graphics


During Jennifer’s first visit to Roland DGA, we created a miniature mockup set printed on the BN-20A to get a feel for the scale of each cutout, the background, and the floor graphics and adjust accordingly. Jennifer was also very impressed with the vibrancy of the colors. She mentioned that in her past printing experience, green and blue had always been hit or miss, but with Roland DG’s expanded color gamut, the colors came out really well.




Jennifer’s comments:For the floor, it was extremely important that we were able to create a feeling of depth with the pond, even though it was a flat surface. To do so, I mocked up several drafts to make sure the perspective would work and added an edge to the back of the pond to create that illusion of depth. For the rocks and grass from the original illustration to stand out, we cut them out as smaller standees and placed them around the booth. 


For the wall, different colored leaves were layered on top of each other to make it seem like a dense forest background. We also added several inches of light green grass to the bottom of the wall that matched the color of the grass on the floor to eliminate the harsh crease that would have been created if the grass had abruptly ended at the wall.


Banners and signage


We did not have printed materials displayed outside the booth but were situated in a prime location where the booth could be seen from many angles. To attract attention, we designed an eye-catching backdrop that was colorful, vibrant, and dimensional


To show attendees how the various elements of the exhibit were created, we also brought in several Roland DG printers. These versatile printers ranged from desktop to wide-format devices. The machines were printing during the show, demonstrating to Con-goers how easy it is to use digital printing to bring designs to life.



Overall impressions


The activation was a huge, engaging success – from the professional quality displays to the carefully considered guest journey through the booth, and highly personalized to Jennifer’s theme and vision.


It was such a pleasure working with a very talented artist who really wanted to see her work come to life. Jennifer did not shy away from creating additional elements to really make it immersive, including the “catch of the day” stickers. The activation attracted many people who were not familiar with the print industry but were impressed by the technology and eager to learn. Both attendees and vendors came by to check out the booth out of curiosity. 


Jennifer’s comments: I hope the attendees enjoyed the event as much as I did! My gratification came from seeing the Con-goers' excitement when having their photos taken at the booth and from being a part of the process of having my art come to life. I really appreciate how supportive Roland DGA and Impulse MGS teams were with my artistic vision, and it really sparked in me a new passion for set design! 


Overall, it was a wonderful experience and the endless possibilities the printers offered gave me complete free rein over how I wanted the project to turn out.

Angelyn Cubacub

Angelyn Cubacub

As Roland DGA's Small Business Segment Manager and a seasoned entrepreneur with a successful print-enabled business, Angelyn Cubacub seamlessly combines hands-on years of experience with a strategic approach to business growth. Her unique blend of practical insights, inspirational guidance, and technical expertise aids small business owners at every stage of their journey.