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Creating with HP SmartStream Mosaic: Garden Journal

HP SmartStream Mosaic
Creating a Garden Journal & Planner with

HP SmartStream Mosaic

Acculink’s graphics department recently experimented with HP SmartStream’s Mosaic feature by producing 10 uniquely designed covers, spines, and edges for a series of journals. HP SmartStream’s Mosaic technology automatically creates millions of designs from just a few core pattern files. The application, HP SmartStream Designer, generates these random images by transforming patterns through Mosaic’s dynamic scaling, transposition, and rotation feature. Spot colors can also be arbitrarily shuffled or replaced to maximize design assets. The possibilities of what Mosaic can offer inspired Acculink’s designers to create projects highlighting the benefits and potential of this feature for their clients.

Job Specifications

  • 218 pages at 8.5" x 5.5"
  • Inside pages print full-color duplex on 60# Accent Opaque Text White
  • Cover prints full-color simplex on 110# Ultra Digital Pearlescent Cover Ice
  • Perfect bound finishing with a spine width of .5"

Cover Seed File Setup

Some considerations on the cover were made during the design process about how to create the pattern files (also known as Seed files). It’s recommended to use vibrant, complex designs with high contrasting colors for maximum impact. All Seed files are required to be in a CMYK color mode but can include Spot colors (Spot colors must be present to use the Shuffle Spot Colors option). Patterns should be optimized and use small design elements with chaotic, non-linear arrangements. File sizes can be up to 3MB, but smaller file sizes are ideal for rendering the HP Mosaic variations, especially when considering larger variable quantities.

Tip

HP's documentation recommends the following for optimizing Seed file size without reducing graphic complexity:
  • All Seed files must be Vector PDF
  • Art should be set to a square dimension (equal height and width)
  • Reduce the vector points; if using Adobe Illustrator use the Simplify command (Object > Path > Simplify)
  • Remove unneeded data; if using Adobe Illustrator remove hidden elements in the PDF file by selecting File > Save as PDF and then unchecking Preserve Illustrator Editing Capabilities
  • Manually combine vector elements and diminish the vector points in the document with Adobe Illustrator's Pathfinder (Window > Pathfinder)
  • If applicable, knock-out overlapping element's using Pathfinder's Merge or Trim tools
Our journal consisted of 3 Seed files for the top graphic and 3 Seed files for the bottom graphic at approximately 14" square. The bottom graphic didn't follow the recommended guidelines for a chaotic pattern which limits the unique amount of variables. This seemed to work with the layout and quantities we were doing.

Seed Files

Floral1

Top Graphic - Seed File 1

No Scaling with Random Position & Rotation
Floral2

Top Graphic - Seed File 2

No Scaling with Random Position & Rotation
Floral3

Top Graphic - Seed File 3

No Scaling with Random Position & Rotation
Pattern1

Bottom Graphic - Seed File 1

No Scaling with Random Position and 45° Rotation
Pattern2

Bottom Graphic - Seed File 2

No Scaling with Random Position and 45° Rotation
Pattern3

Bottom Graphic - Seed File 3

No Scaling with Random Position and 45° Rotation

Edge Setup

Setting the edge designs posed some cutting challenges with the recommended bleed area. We increased the bleed after our initial press proof for our cutters minimum tolerance of .125″. Also after reviewing the final product, we determined that our future layouts would include more of the edge artwork on the page to integrate it with the page design.

We additionally created a backside view with our logo. Our Acculink logo and tagline were added to this side and originally, it didn’t work well. As seen in the photo below, the copy was too thin and the impact was missing from the logo. During the final run, a pattern was created with just the logo and looked more appropriate.

The following outlines the recommended steps and our initial process. We found that some adjustments were necessary to adjust for bleed but others, like the height adjustments, just made the artwork compress to fit the smaller area.

Recommended
Setup

  • Edge Designs should be 2mm in width with 1mm on the page and 1mm in the bleed
  • For Right or Left Edge | Artwork should be setup horizontally and match the page size's height and book's depth
  • For Top or Bottom Edge | Artwork should be setup horizontally and match the page size's width and book's depth

Adjusted
Setup

  • Adjusted edge designs to 6.35mm with 3.175 mm on page and 3.175 mm in bleed (or .25" with .125" on page and .125" in bleed)
  • For Right or Left Edge | We set our width to 9" and height to 1.25" to incorporate bleed but found the height would have been best at .5"
  • For Top or Bottom Edge | We set our designs to 6" wide height to 1.25" to incorporate bleed but found the height would have been best at .5"

Edge Examples & Seed Files

Frontside Edge Printing - 1st Run

Frontside Graphic - 1st Run

This is with 1mm of bleed which was insufficient for our cutting tolerances.
Frontside Edge Printing - 2nd Run

Frontside Graphic - 2nd Run

This was with 3.175mm of bleed and met our recommended bleed tolerances.
Backside Edge Printing - 1st Run

Backside Graphic - 1st Run

This is with 1mm of bleed which was insufficient for our cutting tolerances.
Backside Edge Printing - 2nd Run

Backside Graphic - 2nd Run

This was with 3.175mm of bleed and met our recommended bleed tolerances.
Edge_Top

Edge Top Graphic

This Seed file was placed and divided into 109 cross sections for the frontside of the pages.
Edge_Bottom

Edge Bottom Graphic

This Seed file was placed and divided into 109 cross sections for the frontside of the pages.
Edge_Right

Right Frontside Graphic

This Seed file was placed and rotated 90° then divided into 109 cross sections for the frontside of the pages.
Edge_Tagline

Right Backside Graphic

This Seed file was placed and rotated 90° then divided into 109 cross sections for the backside of the pages.

Spine Setup

The HP Mosaic feature allows for spine printing where an image is able to span a set of books. For example, if you have 7 books in a set with a database of 70 records the software will create 10 sets of 7 books. We are currently working to achieve this with our future journal series. This journal was created with the variable artwork on each spine.

Finished Product

A look at the finished garden journal
Seed 1 Samples

Seed 1 Examples

Seed 3 Samples

Seed 3 Examples

Garden Planner - Front Cover

Cover Close-up

Garden Book - Pg 1

Garden Book - First Page

Garden Book - Planner

Garden Book - Planner

Garden Book - Journal

Garden Book - Journal

Garden Book - Garden Plan Cover Page

Garden Book - Garden Plan Cover Page

Garden Book - Garden Plan Pages

Garden Book - Garden Plan Pages

Garden Book - Plants Cover Page

Garden Book - Garden Plan Cover Page

Garden Book - Plants Pages

Garden Book - Plants Pages

Garden Book - Last Pg

Garden Book - Last Page

Garden Books

Garden Books

About the author

Art Director for Acculink | [email protected]