Minion Yellow is the latest Pantone

Bappales. Bannnnnanasssss. And a love for all things despicable. If you are a fan of Despicable Me, as The Guru is; or at least a fan of the greatest genetically modified little helpers ever, again, as The Guru is, then I’ve got huge news for you! For the first time in their history, Pantone has announced a partnership to have their first character branded official Pantone color. If the opening to this little tale of greatness didn’t already give it away, here’s another little clue…


The Pantone Color Institute announced via their official Twitter account that they are including Minion Yellow in their next color release. To say The Guru is excited is a bit of an understatement!

You can read more here.

Guru of Wide
The Odee Company; est. 1923


Shopping for Custom Canvas (CanvasKick.com)

Fans of the Guru of Wide, I come to you with wisdom. Wisdom pertaining to The Odee Company’s custom canvas portal and shop. Many have asked, “Guru, where do we create and buy our custom canvas”? Well friends fans, follow my instructions below:

1- We’ve already discussed how to make your picture look more like art. I suggest heading over and following Travisodee‘s lead.

2- Once you have your art, head over to Canvaskick.com

3- Follow the CanvasKick steps by choosing your canvas size, uploading your image and entering your ship to address. You’ll have your Custom Canvas hanging on your wall in no time!

Guru of Wide
The Odee Company; est. 1923

How Should I Decorate My Wall?

Your options for covering your walls with art are virtually endless. Art is subjective. Beauty being in the eye of the beholder and all. My job today, is to give you not only options, but hopefully a better understanding of what you are getting when you purchase some of these items. Seeing as how it’s my blog, I want to focus on my favorite option, large wall murals. And when I say large, I mean LARGE. I’m talking let’s cover a whole wall, maybe even a whole room full of walls.

Imagine making your kid’s room look like an enchanted forest. Three walls covered in trees full of magical fairy tale creatures. The fourth wall, where the doorway is, is a fantastic castle, with the door lined up to make you feel like you are walking into it each time you leave the room. Remember, we live in the realm of anything you can imagine! As I talked about here, there are several types of materials to consider when you think about your wall covering. Even in the adhesive backed vinyl “family” there are a ton of choices. When deciding on which material to print one very important consideration for me is who will be installing the finished product, and how long will it be staying up.


We have some materials that are very aggressive in terms of adhesion. This material has a stronger hold, though technically still considered removable, but is very unforgiving when it comes to mistakes during the installation process.  You also need to remember, if it is aggressive going on, it will be aggressive coming off. It is not uncommon for customers to have to literally redo sheetrock and paint if they decide to remove the covering. With this information in mind, I would really recommend this type of product be professionally installed. If you are just putting up a single piece, a two person team may be able to handle it on their own. However, if you are doing a large area that needs to have several pieces lined up and put together, call in a pro. If you are wanting to save on installation, and do the work on your own, a fully repositionable material would be ideal.

Watch as I show you how quickly I can install wall graphics here:

These materials are designed to go up and stay up, until you take them down. The great part is, after you take them down, you can put them right back up in another location. This is great for people who like to change things up by simply rearranging without having to buy all new decor for the home. It also helps in the installation process. If it’s not straight, just pick it up and try it again. The trade off here is that the product is not designed to last as long as some of the other adhesive products we have for home use.

This brings me to my personal choice. A happy middle ground between these two products are adhesive vinyls that have “air egress channels”. Sounds fancy, huh? These products are also known as pressure sensitive adhesives. The product will stick to the wall as soon as it touches it, but only lightly. You can easily lift it back up and lay it down again. This is a huge benefit when it comes to wrinkles and bubbles. Once you have the product in position where you want it, you apply pressure. There are thousands of small peaks of adhesive on the back of the product. These peaks create channels for the air to escape and allow you to move the product around a bit during installation. Once you apply pressure, these peaks rupture and spread the adhesive across the back of your wall covering. I would still recommend a professional install if you have several pieces to get lined up, but if you are putting up just two or three panels, or if lining up the image is not crucial then give it a shot. I know when I did my very first install using this type of product, not only was it doable, but it was a ton of fun too!

With any of these products, I always recommend an over laminate. Laminates are available in a matte or glossy finish to fit your needs. Laminating your finished wall print will help to protect it, as well as make it easier to care for when it comes to spring cleaning time.

Well, I hope you have found at least a little bit of useful information here. Remember, I’m always happy to answer questions as best as I can. Coming up next I think we shall take a look at indoor VS. outdoor products. In the meantime, as always, if there is anything you would like information on send me a message or leave a comment and I’ll work it in sooner rather than later.

Thanks for reading,
The Guru of Wide

How Long Does It Take To Print a Wall Mural?

When it comes to wide format printing, I have a simple mantra (get it, mantra, Guru…These are the jokes guys!) I give clients two choices. You can have it right, or you can have it right now.  Generally speaking the set up time needed to start printing in wide format is fairly quick, assuming the art files are all in order. However, that is not always the case. And even after you have art all ready to go, print times may be longer than some people expect. For example let’s take a look at a recent job I completed.

We received an order from a large retail client. The order seemed straight forward. They were going to send us an art file they wanted printed and wanted multiple copies of it. They requested to have them printed on
one of our repositionable materials that a member of our sales staff had shown them. So far, so good. But then the file came in. They wanted us to duplicate a piece of wood tile that was 23.5 inches wide and 10 feet tall. The art file we got was a photo that they had taken of the actual wood panel. You could see the glare from the flash along one side of the piece. We spent some time debating with our client and ultimately decided to blow the art up about 10% and crop out the flash. Then, the client thought the proof we printed was a little too red. We scaled down the size of the file and printed several copies with different color corrections. It took some back and forth with our sales rep running copies over for approval, but we always go that extra mile to get it right. (see mantra above)

Printed Floor Vinyl

So with the art finalized, we were ready to go. The material we ended up using came in 100 foot rolls, 54 inches wide. My plan was to print two side by side, with nine sets per roll. The client ended up wanting
120 individual tiles! So we ordered in 7 rolls of material and got ready to print.

One thing we realized about the art while we were working on sizing and color correction, was that the file was HUGE!!! Because of the way I have my print software configured, and the fact that I
wanted to use my contour cutter*, I needed to load my files in individually so that I would end up with 60 files of 2 each to print. This would allow me to run them through my cutter in 10 foot sections, and
also allow me to leave the printer set up on automatic to print files overnight if I needed to. In the end, I was really glad I did. Because of the file size it was taking about 3 and a half minutes per file
to load. My software is set up to load no more than 2 files at a time. 60 files, loading 2 at a time, which brings us to 30 files, at 3 and a half minutes each, plus a little bit of slow down from
working it too hard, a little over 2 hours just to load the files. (Sorry if you are reading this early in the morning and I’m making you do math).

While my files were loading, I loaded up my printer and prepared for the first run. When enough files were loaded, I selected my first group of 9 and sent them to the printer. We use latex ink printers in
our shop so the warm up process takes about 5 to 10 minutes before it actually starts firing the ink. So I waited for the printing to start and then after the first few minutes of printing I checked the one thing I knew
would have the largest impact on my turn around time for this job. ESTIMATED TIME REMAINING! Each set of 2 ended up taking just over 30 minutes to print and dry/cure. 9 sets per roll (Sorry, here comes more of that math thing…), 4 and a half hours per roll, 7 rolls, 31 and a half hours in just print and dry time. 5 minutes to unload a roll after printing, 10 minutes to load a new roll, 10 minutes to get back to print ready adding almost 30 minutes to each run gives us another 3 and a half hours for a total of 35 hours just to print!!!!!

The Wide Format Printing Process Video:

My material came in late on a Friday afternoon (doesn’t it always?), and was only a partial delivery. The material we were using for this job is not one of the ones that I usually keep in stock. My local supplier said
they only had 5 rolls in stock and would send them. Remember, I needed 7 to do the job. When we received the shipment, turns out they could only find 4 rolls, so that’s what we got. The rest was to come the following Wednesday. I started the first roll printing late on Friday and stayed long enough to make sure the first set printed okay. One of the benefits of the printers I have the pleasure of using is that they are fairly self sufficient. I made sure there was plenty of ink loaded and no obvious issues and I headed home. Monday morning bright (or dark) and early, I had a full roll of printed material ready to be cut. I off loaded this roll, loaded another and started it printing another group of nine. It took me just over 2 hours to get the first roll trimmed out. No big deal since roll 2 was only about half way through printing at that point. A couple of more hours later and roll 2 came off the printer and roll 3 started up. Roll 2 was trimmed, and roll three finished printing a couple of hours after that. I waited around long enough to pull that off the printer and load roll 4 to print overnight
for me. Not bad productivity for a Monday if I may say so myself!!!

Tuesday morning rolled around and I came in for another fully printed ready to trim roll. I unloaded it and loaded up roll 5……at least I would have, but remember, my supplier only found 4 rolls. The other 3
I needed would not be in until Wednesday and I had everything I could print done by Tuesday morning. I was finished trimming before lunch. Now the wait begins. I took this golden opportunity to do a little maintenance
on my equipment. I’ll take a chance to write some maintenance  tips in a future post.

Wednesday morning rolled around and I was anxious to get started back to printing. I finally did, around 4 o’clock when my material finally showed up. I was not able to wait for a whole roll to print so I was only
able to print 1 roll on Wednesday and was not able to start another to run over night. That meant more down time for me on Thursday, but hey, whatcha gonna do?

I came in Thursday morning and unloaded roll number 5 and got roll number 6 started. It finished up around lunch time and I pulled it off and started the glorious last roll. I finished printing roll 7 late-ish on
Thursday afternoon. It had been a hectic few days. Bare in mind I have not mentioned other jobs that came in during this time that had to be set up, printed, trimmed, and delivered. There were plenty. I talked with my
boss and he said it was okay with him if I let roll 7 wait to trim until Friday morning since it was so late on Thursday already. Grateful Guru was Grateful.

Friday morning rolled around, and roll 7 trimmed out nicely. This has now become a week long process. But of course we are not done yet. I mentioned this job was for a retail client. They needed 15 of these prints for
eight separate locations. And they wanted them packed that way. Up to this point I had been laying the prints out flat for storage. They would need to be rolled and boxed for shipping. The material we use for these types of
prints is somewhat fragile because we do not use an over laminate on it. It also needs to be rolled print side out when packing it to avoid “cracking” the print. So boxing was another challenge. I used some of the
laminate backer material left over from other jobs to lay on my table to avoid scratching the print since it would be laying face down. Counted out 15, and rolled the onto a cardboard core that had been cut to fit the
material. Most of my cores are 54 inches so I had to do some trim down work. I also had to build custom boxes to ship them in. Finding something 30 inches long was not an issue. But finding something 30 inches long that was large enough to fit 15 panels 10 feet long rolled up was a bit tougher. I decided to just cut down boxes to fit and they actually worked out quite well. I applied the shipping labels and was ready to send them out
into the world. Rolling and packing took almost a full day. I started around 7 A.M., and with a little trial and error to get it just right, I finished up around 3 P.M.

So all in all, 1 full week to print and trim, plus a day of packing. Flip side of the timing issue is this…While typing up this blog today, I received an art file for a job. I loaded it, printed it, cut it, and took it to the sales rep who was going to deliver it. Total time, less than one hour!
Banner stands odee company

So how long does it take to print a wide format job??? The Guru says “Time is relative, man”! Just remember my mantra, you can have it right, or you can have it right now. A wide format wall mural is a beautiful
addition to your home or business that is going to last for years to come. It’s worth waiting a couple of days to get it right!!!

Thanks for reading,
The Guru of Wide

The Odee Company; est. 1923

Custom Dry Erase Wall in Pediatrician’s Offices

Something The Guru has found very interesting…

There are laminates that are available that function as a “dry erase board” type coating for vinyl. I would enjoy seeing this material used in waiting rooms for pediatrician offices.
Imagine not only having a fully printed wall that is fun and full of things for the poor wee ones that aren’t feeling well to look at, but also having tic-tac-toe boards, mazes, stick figures with
blank faces to fill in! And the best part? It all just wipes away. Wait, that’s not the best part, the best part is YOU GET TO DRAW ON THE WALL WITHOUT GETTING IN TROUBLE!!!

Guru of Wide

No reason this would not work as giant “white boards” for a conference room. Or, even better, in your own home. Imagine a game/family room at your house with fun stuff printed to cover one
wall. All the same fun things I mentioned before for your kids, and right in the middle, a picture frame printed with blank white space in the center of it. Pictionary anyone?????
Word finds, hidden picture puzzles, nursery rhyme characters, “lions, tigers and bears, oh my”! As always with wide format, the possibilities are endless…….   

Dry erase wall wrap

What does everyone think? I would love to get some feedback on this. When The Odee Company starts putting some of this up, I’ll be sure to get pictures to all of you. In the meantime, as always, if
there is anything you would like information on send me a message or leave a comment and I’ll work it in sooner rather than later.

Thanks for reading,
The Guru of Wide 

The Odee Company; est. 1923

What is Wide Format Printing?

One of the most common questions people ask when I tell them that I am a wide format printer is, “What is wide format printing“? I always have a very simple answer. I tell them it’s a unicorn. It’s a leprechaun. It’s a chocolate porcupine taking a shower in a butterscotch waterfall.

What is Wide Format Printing?

Then, after I have enjoyed the look of confusion on their faces, I explain it is anything you can imagine, and more.

In wide format printing you can print on such a wide array of materials that you would be hard pressed to find a need that could not be matched. From small peel and stick stickers (printed on an adhesive backed vinyl), to posters (printed on heavy poster paper), to signs on foam core (adhesive vinyl again, then applied to foam), to complete vehicle wraps (vinyl again, but a permanent material designed for outdoor use).

We have temporary materials, permanent materials, canvas for portraits, repositionable materials that can be put up on walls, and then taken down later and placed in another location. From personal uses such as your kids name cut from vinyl to put above their bed to a family portrait printed large enough to cover the biggest wall in your house to retail applications such as perforated window film (print on one side, see-thru on the other) to backlit signage to banners advertising your big sale.

I will be touching more on these individual items in the coming weeks, so please come back often. If you would like for me to cover one of these topics sooner rather than later send me a message or leave a comment and I’ll do my best to move a topic up in my schedule for you.

Thanks for reading,
The Guru of Wide

The Odee Company; est. 1923