The client approached Dublin-based Vinehall Displays with a brief to promote Coca-Cola's 'Holidays are Coming' campaign with a full wrap and the 'biggest bow possible' for the kiosk at the busy Europa Buscentre in Belfast. As an events and exhibition specialist with 20 years' experience designing, building and installing creative projects, Vinehall Displays duly delivered with a 2m-high bow with halo-lit 3D letters.
The Christmas campaign follows a Halloween project for the same client, which saw the Europa Buscentre kiosk turned into a spooky haunted house. Featuring a skull graphic that imitated a shelf wobbler with red eyes lit with LEDs, the project also included Fanta logos installed 15mm off the wall with an impactful halo LED lighting effect.
Both of these jobs were completed on Roland systems – the first SOLJET having been installed ten years ago and still going strong, as Gerard McElhinney Jnr, Director at Vinehall Displays, explains.
"We had been considering a flatbed printer but saw a demonstration of the Roland SOLJET Pro 3, and discovered it ticked a lot more boxes for us than the flatbed. We ran some sample files and found that the quality was very, very good," he says. "It was our first step into printing having previously outsourced everything, and as a result we now print almost all work in house."
The first job on the Roland SOLJET Pro 3, for Irish meat brand Denny, set the tone for ambitious print projects. "We turned a removals van into a house on wheels complete with brick-effect walls, customised internal wallpaper, front door, windows with trompe l'oeil views, furniture and a kitchen," explains Gerard.
At this stage, Vinehall Displays was run by Gerard's parents, with the current director working alongside his father Gerard McElhinney Snr until taking over its management six years ago. The family business has grown by 20 per cent each year and now employs 14 full-time members of staff including printers, carpenters, designers and administrators. Its blue-chip clients span multiple markets, and include supermarket chains, banks, phone companies, confectionery brands and Dublin Zoo.
The Roland SOLJET Pro 3 has been running for one-third of Vinehall's 30-year lifespan – a longevity Gerard says is down to using Roland branded inks, regular maintenance from Neopost engineers and weekly cleaning. This printer now works alongside a newer Roland SOLJET Pro 4 supplied by Sign & Digital Materials, a workhorse printer/cutter running GREENGUARD Gold Certified ECO-SOL MAX inks including metallic and white options. This popular machine is used by graphics companies across the globe to produce signs, posters, banners, vehicle wraps, labels, decors and even fine art reproductions.
Gerard explains that the Roland SOLJET's Pantone reference library was immediately a major draw for Vinehall's clients, adding that it has also been put to work printing a colour-accurate backdrop for a Dulux paint advert.
"Our clients trust us to deliver accurate colours, so the Pantone library is very important," he says. "The machines have been fantastic for us – the print is brilliant, sheer quality."
The Christmas display at the Belfast bus station will remain in the run-up to Christmas, with Vinehall Displays already looking ahead to 2019 – a year set to include further business growth, a potential new Roland investment and a possible visit to the Roland Creative Centre in Clevedon, where visitors can already see inventive designs printed by Vinehall Displays. In addition, the company has entered the Roland Hero Awards and will discover if it has been crowned the 2018 winner in January.
For more details on entering the Roland Hero awards, please visit rolandhero.com.
For further information on Vinehall Displays, please visit vinehall.ie.
For further information on Roland DG, please visit rolanddg.co.uk.