(Dec. 14, 2012) Many people have photographs they or others have taken displayed in frames in their homes. Some also have them printed on canvas. But how often have you seen those images printed on wood?
Ocean City resident Wyatt Harrison is providing that service through his business, Plak That.
While visiting his brother in California in April, Harrison, who graduated from the University of San Diego in 2010, saw a promotional “drink specials” sign at a bar printed on wood that piqued his interest.
“You don’t come across products very often that are new. When I came across the idea, I thought it would be cool in beach-oriented places or bigger,” Harrison said. “It was very detailed and digitally printed on wood. I wondered what it would look like with photos.”
Harrison experimented with the product this past summer at Malibu’s Surf Shop, on the Boardwalk at Eighth Street. Owner Lee Gerachis’ photographs were printed on wood and sold at the store, where Harrison worked.
There were a number of requests from people about the ability to personalize the product with their photos. That was when Harrison said “a light bulb went off.”
He created his company, Plak That, in July and launched his Web site, www.plakthat.com, last month.
The response and demand from people has been overwhelming, the 24-year-old said.
“New York, Montana, I’ve been getting orders from everywhere,” Harrison said. “It’s a new application, a new way to show your photos … I think the attraction is that most people haven’t seen something like this.”
A number of photographs Harrison has taken have been printed on wood and are for sale on the site. They can also be purchased at The Nest and Burley Oak Brewery in Berlin, Ish Boutique on 34th Street in Ocean City and Studio S in Rehoboth Beach, Del.
Or, people can upload their own images — original files work best — and have them custom-printed on wood in one of four sizes. Currently, pinewood is being used. Customers can also add text to their products or create collages.
The ideal size for Instagram photos is the 7.5 inch-by-7.5 inch piece of wood, Harrison said, while the most popular piece is the 10.5 inch-by-16.5 inch plaque. Other sizes available are 14 inches by 10.5 inches and 18.5 inches by 27.5 inches.
“What’s neat is that you can print 10 of the same photo and each will look different,” he said. “When you’re working with wood, it’s never the same [because of the grain].”
Once the order is complete, Harrison will send it to his manufacturer in Salisbury. It typically takes about two to three weeks for delivery once the product is ordered. Pieces come wired or with wall hooks and are ready to hang. The “Plak That” logo is laser etched into the back of the wood.
To receive by Christmas, orders must be placed by Sunday, Dec. 16.
The wood is sourced locally. The farthest place wood has been used from is Virginia, Harrison said. All of the wood is sustainably harvested and certified by the Forest Stewardship Council, whose mission is to promote environmentally sound, socially beneficial and economically prosperous management of the world’s forests.
“People can buy this and feel like they are not destroying the environment,” Harrison said.
Plak That recently joined “1% For the Planet,” a growing movement of companies donating 1 percent of gross revenue to environmental organizations worldwide.
For more information or to design and order a photo printed on wood, visit www.plakthat.com. Plak That can also be found on Facebook. Wholesale orders for photographers or businesses who want to re-sell pieces are also available.