DOCUMERICA is a multimedia program developed and presented by by the string quartet Ethel. It is comprised of images, commissioned by the United States Environmental Protection Agency program of the same name, projected on stage while the quartet performs music from a range of American composers.
In today’s economic climate, touring musicians now generate more of their income from merchandise sold at live performances. So the goal was to package the recording in as special a manner as possible — to make it a unique physical keepsake. Following the tone of the stage presentation, DOCUMERICA images were collaged and printed with a special ink set derived from Pantone’s proprietary Hexachrome process. This gave an otherworldly quality to the printed packages. Colors were unique, cleaner and more chromatic than their standardized CMYK counterparts.
Because printing with a custom ink set prevents other jobs from being on press at the same time, we were able to monopolize the whole sheet of paper. This gave us the option to produce four different outer sleeves, one for each region of the United States as described by the US Census Bureau: Northeast, Midwest, South, and West. The results sparked greater customer interaction (and sales) at the merchandise table.