Ricoh Canada is unleashing Ryerson’s creativity with the installation of their Ricoh Pro TF6250 printer at Ryerson’s Creative Technology Lab. The equipment will be accessible to students and faculty in the Graphics Communications Management (GCM) program and across the faculty of Communication and Design (FCAD) where the Creative Technology Lab is housed.
The Pro TF6250 is a wide format printer that is capable of printing on a range of materials like foam core, wood, metal, acrylic, glass and more. The printer will enable students and faculty to create and print rich course content, materials and samples. To learn more about this partnership, CJRU spoke with associate professor and chair of GCM, Jason Lisi and associate professor of Interior Design and director of Creative Technology Lab at FCAD, Jonathan Anderson. Lisi and Anderson both expressed the importance of academic and industry synergy.
“Within the field of creative technology, it’s evolving so fast that it’s impossible for any one person to keep up. By establishing these industry relationships, it’s not only vital for the future of academia and programs in my opinion, but it’s also vital for students to hear from industry professionals that are leading the way. Often they’re a couple steps ahead of us when we’re ahead in a different path … a research and experimental path, we may be a couple steps ahead of them and we add value to what they’re trying to do. Whereas in the industry and production, day to day operations, they’re a couple steps ahead of us. So there’s this natural osmosis that’s happening between the industry and the academy,” Anderson explains.
With support from Ricoh, students and faculty alike are able to reach new heights. Lisi mentions that professors are no longer limited to teaching certain concepts theoretically as the printer will be woven into the curriculum and create hands-on teaching moments. Anderson adds that students can still access the printer during the pandemic by submitting files for print and receiving their work through delivery or curb side pick-up. Not only does the presence of the printer enable new creations, they say it allows students to practice prepping files and effectively communicating with technicians which are important skills to develop as they enter the workforce.
For faculty, not only does it change their teaching but also their research. Anderson says that professors are already experimenting with the printer. Lisi adds that the essence of the Creative Technology Lab is elevated with this partnership with Ricoh Canada.
“When Ricoh first approached me about this idea about the printer, I immediately thought of the Creative Technology Lab because of all the other equipment that already existed in there. It made perfect sense, it seemed to close a circle if you will. You now have this amazing machine that can print on just about any substrate … and then you can take what you print, and just walk to the other side of the lab and do all the finishing work on it. It just seemed like the perfect puzzle piece that fit into place,” Lisi says.
To hear more, listen to the interview below.