Where graphics production is a family affair
By Lori Leaman
The new facility's bigger space allowed Advanced to add equipment that would help it grow. The company added an electric dryer line, and over the next few years, brought in two Parapress graphics presses, a Tektronix Phaser printer, a Douthitt exposure unit, an M&R Eclipse press, and an HP 1050 digital printer.
Advanced made a major change in its printing processes in 2000 with the switch from solvent to UV inks, which necessitated the purchase of a UV dryer line. Later, the company added an American M&M Daytona press, an HP 5000 inkjet printer, a 60-in. Seal Laminator, and a Mimaki JV inkjet printer. Other equipment purchases included an Eclipse press, another UV dryer line, an Encad Novajet Pro 750 inkjet printer, and an M&R Renegade XL graphics press.
In 2002, Ramsey expanded his team of employees with a salesman. He also recognized the skills that his own children could bring to the business, and in 2003 hired his son Chad to handle information technology. Ramsey also hired his daughter Alyson the next year to serve as the office manager.
Ramsey admits that bringing family members into the business can create friction now and then. Ramsey and his children—and their spouses who work at Advanced—are a tight-knit group inside and outside the office, which means they must take extra care to respect each other's opinions and decisions. They also make a concerted effort not to discuss business while at family gatherings, which may take place two or three times each week. Ramsey says keeping these family relationships solid is important to him, especially because one of his goals for the business is a successful transition of ownership and management from the first generation of the family to the second and beyond.
It all begins in the prepress department, where Susie Basso does her magic designing and preparing image files. Several pieces of the company's equipment call the art department home, including the Mimaki JV4-130 plotter and HP 5000 proofing device. Basso uses the Mimaki printer (Figure 1) to produce film positives and the HP 5000 to generate proofs for use in house and as a backup for the company's flatbed inkjet printer. She uses Adobe Creative Suite programs to prepare artwork.
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