Movie Poster Production Life Cycle
Raw Materials for Movie Poster Production
In today’s society, we are constantly bombarded by excess forms of media whether it be social networking, radio broadcasts, or television. Popular forms of physical entertainment items in the past such as magazines, novels, and newspapers have already been converted and processed into a more easily accessible version of itself at the touch of society’s fingertips through modern technology; the online community can now download and read eBooks or skim through the daily paper through the World Wide Web.
Advertisement for society’s most popular form of entertainment, cinema, has also slowly converted from solely movie posters to increased production of trailers, movie websites for interviews or movie specials, and online advertisements. However, dating back to it’s predecessor as a form of advertisement for circus events, movie posters serve as cinema tradition to promote for widespread entertainment. Posters serve as a way to view social history and thus have become iconic in representing the cinema community and preserve tradition by continual production. Thus, in order to convey the appreciation of this classic form of art, this research paper will address the material life cycle production of the movie poster. The process includes raw material acquisition, manufacturing, distribution, recycling, and waste management.
A Short History of the Movie Poster
The movie poster is a descendant of a form of advertisement for circus events which utilized the press-printing process of using carved pattern wooden blocks covered with an oil “grease-like” ink displaying a date on a piece of parchment known as stock posters.
Acquisition of Raw Material
The paper used for movie posters is alpha cellulose based; alpha cellulose is the major component of wood pulp although the paper itself can be made from a variety of plant sources such as bamboo and rice. Wood pulp consists of 50% cellulose, 30% lignin, and 20% carbohydrates. The alpha cellulose fibers are then separated through chemical processing and becomes the physical paper form. Although cotton is a high contestant for durability and longevity with a majority of the components being 99.8% cellulose as opposed to wood’s 50% cellulose, cotton is less economical and lacking in quantity.
Electrostatic ink is the next main component of the movie poster for inkjet printing. Primary colorants for inkjet printing comprises of mainly pigment-based inks which require the thorough combination process of the pigment itself with a form dispersant and additional water.
Processing and Manufacturing of Raw Materials
Movie poster production begins with the paper itself, and that stems from the harvesting of tree wood. Trees are cut at wood mills and transported via tractors to the respective processing factory. There, the trees are stripped of their exterior and processed through water and thermal energy processes. Thus, the Kraft and sulphite chemical processes allow for the separation and cleansing of all three elements of wood pulp. The Kraft chemical process simply converts wood into mainly cellulose wood pulp. Contained within high pressure vessels and combined with a water solution consisting of sodium sulfide and sodium hydroxide, unprocessed wood chips taken from the wood mills are chemically processed in order to dissolve lignin that acts as a binding agent for cellulose fibers. It is imperative that these processes are done in order to extract the alpha-cellulose fibers required for the paper construction. Addition bleaching processes are necessary to remove the residual lignin left; lignin inhibits the lifespan of the paper and results in the browning colour that occurs after a few years.
Filtering for ink jet ink is necessary to remove larger particles and prevent the clogging of printheads. There is a three step process to allow for fine filtration of the electrostatic ink: particle removal, prefiltration or gel removal, and the final filters. The unprocessed pigment basically goes through three different filtration chambers in order to become refined enough for printer usage.
Other materials and machines require for the poster production process include the inkjet printer or electrostatic ink jet recording apparatus which utilizes electric energy and electromechanical transducer for heat resistance. In order to create an image, a printhead drops ink as it moves and generates graphically designed pattern on the paper used. Multiple nozzles are typically linearly arranged and move perpendicularly to the paper moving down the length . Electrostatic force causes the surface tension of the ink to break, hence resulting in the ejection of colorant from the printhead onto the intended print media.
Transportation and Distribution
The production of the physical movie poster itself is done at a designated movie studio and collaborated on among a group of movie artists. It is unclear as to how movie posters are now distributed as the process is becoming increasingly decentralized as the need for movie posters is declining; online movie trailers and websites are now easier to access. However in the past, the movie studios would ship off the finished posters to movie halls for display and advertisement purpose.
Use, Reuse, and Maintenance
Old or unused movie posters are then sent back to the movie studios for storage or reusing purposes. This is where the deinking process is used in order to strip the paper of the inking on the facade of print media and transformed into a residual pulp can be utilized for alternative uses. There are three different methods used for stripping the colorants from the posters: flotation deinking, bleaching, and washing. Flotation deinking is a chemical process in which surfactant chemicals remove ink from paper into reusable pulp. Bleaching is the next process in hydrogen peroxide and sodium dithionite extracts ink colorants and whitens the reuseable pulps as much as possible. Washing removes any residual inks.
There are three main elements of waste that are produced from the production of movie posters: greenhouse gas emissions, carbon sequestration, and avoided emissions. Within the alpha-cellulose fiber extraction process the resulting waste includes additional carbohydrate and lignin which become detrimental to the total lifespan of the paper material itself. However, the use of wood pulp as opposed to the use of cotton pulp proves beneficial to the environment as wood is comparatively easier to reuse, recycle, and mass produce.
Additionally, there is an amount of pollution released into the air during the purification of wood pulp, Kraft and sulfite processes, due to the conventional industrial boilers use thermal energy (through burning of oils and coal) and inorganic waste matter as carbohydrates and lignin pools at the bottom of the pressure vessels with the water solution of sodium hydroxide and sodium sulfide.
As for the chemical filtration processing required for the electrostatic ink jet ink, the initial particle removal process removes larger pigment waste that may inhibit the inkjet printer from properly and effectively projecting an even layer of colorant onto the print media via printheads.
Although the popularity of movie poster production is dwindling, they remain iconic in their representation of history and cinema tradition. The amount of materials and energy put into this life cycle is worth understanding as the effects a largely sized, graphically designed paper in turn affect the environment as well as cultural society.
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Energy in Movie Poster
Movie posters are used to promote and advertise films. The posters are used to attract the viewers’ attention to watch a certain film. With all the colorful designs and graphics on the paper, there is a long process of manufacturing to produce such a simple item. In design production life cycle, there are many important stages that are involved to have a good complete cycle. Each stage has a critical role to move forward within the cycle like raw materials, the embodied energy, and wastes and emissions. There are many ways to create movie posters and it takes a lot of raw materials and energy to produce them. Like all objects created, there will be waste being produced along the process. Energy provide every stage in the design life cycle to work, and that involves being used in making paper or transporting them to another place to be process. Movie posters are made from ink and cellulose paper. Energy is what fuels the materials and the final product to be made.
Movie posters have a lot of components that made up the final products. The ink and poster paper are usually the main components and both have an origin with a lot of energy being used. Paper can be originated from trees and it takes a long process to get from tree to paper. It is also the same with ink, because ink is a mix of many chemicals to become the final product of printing ink.
Energy in Paper
For poster paper, it begins with trees. In order to make paper from the trees is to turn the wood into pulp. The raw wood is transported to pulp mills to be processed. Wood pulp is basically wood cellulose fiber. There are many ways of pulping. Mechanical pulping uses machines to grind wood chips into wood pulp. This process of pulping usually has the pulp retains its lignin, which is usually used for weaker paper like newsprint and phonebook pages.
For the more commonly used method, chemical pulp also known as Krafting uses chemicals to remove the lignin from the wood fiber. With the lignin removed, it allowed the pulp to be used to produce stronger paper such as poster paper or paperboard. Then the pulp is put onto moving mesh screens by big machines and it goes through several processes into mats to get rid of the water and dry. The mat goes through a heat roller to remove the rest of the water and compress into a long roll of paper.
In the end, the paper gets cut into various sizes for different kinds of paper. Then the paper goes through more chemicals to have special texture, extra strength, or water resistance. The paper goes through additional chemicals to become specialized paper such as poster paper.
Paper mills and pulp mills use up 4.89 TJ (terra joules). Creating these coated and laminated paper uses up 1.81 TJ. While, the other basic organic chemical manufacturing and plastic materials and resin manufacturing costs 0.794 and 0.668 TJ respectively.
For printer ink, it is an organic or inorganic pigment or dye dissolved or suspended in a solvent. Ink can be made from many different ways. Printing ink can be divided into two different types. One of them is the ink for the physical manual printing with the metal plates. It is transferred physically on paper. The other is the ink for digital printing, such as inkjet and electrostatic printing. For movie posters, it usually uses the latter technique to create multiple copies.
Color ink is usually made from soybean oil or a heavy petroleum distillate as the solvent combined with organic pigments. While black ink is made from carbon black. To produce soy ink, the soybeans are collected and cleaned. Then they are cut into flakes and goes through machines to be processed into oil. The soybean oil is refined, cooked and carefully blended with pigments, resins and waxes. The amount of pigments and chemicals used varied from different types of ink and manufacturers. Then it goes through more machines and it turns into printing ink.
Printing ink manufacturing usually use up 1.61 TJ. Organic chemical manufacturing uses up 1.57 TJ of energy. Color ink and black ink needs to go through synthetic dye manufacturing and carbon black manufacturing, which uses 1.19 TJ and 1.10 TJ respectively. Oil and gas extraction from the printer ink uses 1.04 TJ to create the ink.
Recycling of Movie Posters
The recycling of movie posters get split into three steps, because the movie posters first needs to be deinked. From there, the paper goes through a recycling process while the ink is biodegradable.
First the movie poster needs to be deinked and it is split into three steps: flotation deinking, bleaching and washing. In flotation deinking, ink first is removed through addition of chemicals such as surfactants into the recovered pulp. The hydrophobic parts of the printing ink such as ink particles are then selectively floated.These components are then removed in the resulting foam through machines. Then the next step is bleaching, which represents the colorants in inks and the brightening of the pulp being destroyed. It is destroyed by bleaching agents such as hydrogen peroxide and sodium dithionite added during the pulping step and sometimes in a separate bleaching step. Finally, washing is the removal of inks and other unwanted components in the recovered pulp by washing the pulp in a diluted form on a wire screen. The fibers are recovered on the screen and the filtrate is treated to remove the unwanted solid material. Washing is only effective in the removal of small particle size inks.
The paper is recycled through a long process. The paper will be put in a cylinder and be spun to clean it, and some ink can also be removed. The pulp would be sprayed onto a conveyor belt. Water will drip through the belt’s screen, and the paper fibers will start bonding together. Heated metal rollers will dry the paper, and would be put onto large rolls, which can be made into new paper products.
The ink, which is usually made from soybean oil, is very biodegradable. So even if it is not removed from the paper, it is able to be recycled with the paper without it being deinked. It decompose faster than petroleum printer ink.
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