I recently had the privilege of attending the Color22 Conference. In my opinion, this conference is the premier event of its kind. There is always an amazing amount of quality information and it doesn’t hurt that it was held in La Jolla, CA (I live in Minnesota. On the day we returned, it was 0 degrees here). I have been attending this conference since 2009 and even though I have gone from attending to presenting, I never fail to gain new insights and valuable information that can help me every day.
This year had an impressive line-up of keynotes and breakout sessions. There were seven keynotes and 22 breakout sessions including a number of color tools sessions. The vendor area had numerous companies represented. Lunch offered a great networking opportunity every day, and we also had the opportunity to get together and talk over an adult beverage. This event was cancelled last year, after all of the upheaval in the world, it was nice to be able to get together and hang out with other friends in the industry. Let’s take a look at the topics covered by Color22.
Breakout Sessions Deliver a Wide Range of Knowledge
The 22 breakout sessions this year were divided into three different “tracks”: Print & Production, Brand & Design, and Not on Paper. Sessions were also color coded by knowledge level: Fundamental, Intermediate, and Advanced. There is always a plethora of great information, with inkjet well represented.
The sessions covered a range of topics:
- Pat Herold’s session “Shhhh – it’s a Secret” was an entertaining look at some of the “secrets” that maybe aren’t common knowledge to people working with color management.
- “Saving Time and Money in Wide Format with Process Control” was a great session on the importance of monitoring your process.
- Don Hutcheson’s “Perfect Color: What’s Possible and What’s Not” was an informative talk on managing customer expectations.
“Not on Paper” Track Expands Conference Focus
One of the innovations this time around was the Not on Paper track. Most of these sessions focused on garment and textiles, and inkjet was well represented. Some of the highlights were:
- “Tame the Color Management and Sublimation Printing Lions!” was an excellent session which covered both transfer and DTG Dye Sublimation. Mike Motter (in full lion tamer outfit) presented lots of practical information and some very cool hacks for getting things right. Mike is an old colleague from my dye sub days, and it was great to see him share his knowledge at the conference.
- “Color Management in DTG Printing” covered a very difficult subject in an easy to understand manner.
- Bruce Ridge of Nasdar’s “Achieving G7 on Direct-to-Garment” was another great session on a mystifying and sometimes controversial topic.
Keynotes Highlight Both Brand and Production Topics
There were a number of excellent keynotes this year. From Gerry O’Brion of What Big Brands Know, who was instrumental in the Coors Light “blue can” campaign to Kevin Laurino from Netflix, great information was delivered in a thoughtful and entertaining manner. I gave my first Keynote this year on Color is Everyone’s Business, which covered color and process control across our large inkjet fleet as well as litho. It was an honor to be able to stand in front of a large number of colleagues and friends and showcase some of IWCO Direct’s accomplishments.
From designers to brand managers to print production, there is something for everyone at these conferences. No matter where you are on your Color Management journey, you will learn and grow and network. I highly recommend it to anyone who wants to understand color better. Be sure to flag me down at Color23.