View Full Version : Printing maps on different Medium

12-12-2013, 07:46 PM
Hello everyone,

Long time reader but never registered until now. My question is simple and one I could not find in the forum search.

Has anyone had success printing some of these detailed maps, including the 3D ones, on anything other than plain old paper?

1) Old "Antiqued" paper
2) Crumbled paper
3) Animal skins (Vellum).

Are there any types of printers that can handle that medium or do you pretty much have to hand draw on them?

The reason I am asking is because I have always wanted an old style map in my office, one on either antiqued paper or on actual Goat/Calf skin like back in BC days.

Any help would be greatly appreciated and I thoroughly enjoy your site!

Best Wishes,


12-12-2013, 09:39 PM
Welcome to the Guild Forums Planetnine. Sorry, but I don't know much about specialty printers.

12-13-2013, 04:32 AM
Honestly, while some forms of "antique-ish" papers and parchment exist that are printable (both fairly expensive), the 'skins' won't be accepted by any digital printers on the market. For crumpled paper, your best off to crumble the paper after it's been printed. Otherwise you can print to inkjet printable canvas and a few other odd mediums, but nothing reminiscent to old mediums. I've run a digital print shop for 20 years, and am knowledgeable about most digital printing technologies and media.

12-13-2013, 12:10 PM
You might consult with some fine artists. I know there were some at my college who were somehow printing on all kinds of weird materials. I have no idea how it was being done, but based on the gallery, they didn't seem to have much in the way of limits concerning media.

After a bit of searching, I ran across this company: Print to Anything Solutions (http://www.imagelab.co.nz/print-to-anything-solutions)
They claim that their flatbed printer can print on anything. If I understand the machine correctly, the printhead moves in 2 dimensions over stationary a medium instead of using a drive to move the medium itself, which should lend itself to printing on any flat material that fits in the bed. Whether or not the material can take the ink is another matter, of course.

12-13-2013, 02:56 PM
I've used heat transfer paper (like for making T-shirts), which you can print to, then subsequently transfer to a variety of other mediums, if you have something that can fit under a heat press and won't be damaged by the heat. I've done heat transfers to muslin cloth which gives a kind of authentic old medium for maps.

12-15-2013, 04:13 PM
Well, considering you have some video games that come with cloth maps, presumably there is some way of printing onto non-paper surfaces, but I imagine they use some specific service like Midgardsormr mentions to make them - not a regular printer.

12-15-2013, 11:09 PM
There's a place here that has a laser that they have hooked up to a printer. I've seen them use it to burn designs into leather belts and such. I'll bet it could be hooked up to burn a hi-res map into a goat hide or something. Sounds like a fun idea actually.

12-16-2013, 12:42 PM
I've seen print on cloth booths at the fair, where they take a photo of your kids and print it onto teacloths or aprons for grandma...

I'm sure you could find a printshop that can do that.

-Rob A>

12-18-2013, 12:52 AM
Wow thank you all for the replies. It is kind of funny that as far as our technology has advanced we actually have to work hard to find ways to print old school.

I found another possible way and I am going to be trying it soon. Involved using some type of paste, forgot the name but will post it later. Rubbing it on the skin then placing the picture on top and letting it sit over night. You have to reverse the image, then print it so it comes off the proper way on the skin.

Will post pics if it works :)

thank you all!