Wednesday, February 27, 2019

Sue Bowler Reviews: Digital Balloon Images Magazine & The Very Best of 2018 Print Publication

My collection of Balloon Images™ magazines goes back as far as 1990! I have every issue from November/December 1990 to the last printed issue, October/November/ December 2018 - wow, an impressive twenty eight year collection! This fantastic free resource from Qualatex has helped me each and every day in my ballooning career. In my earlier days, it was an absolute life-line: we had no internet, YouTube or any of the other incredible resources that are available today. Even today it continues to be a fabulous source of knowledge and inspiration!

In January 2019, Balloon Images became an online publication and as much as I will miss my Images magazine dropping through the door, I am happy that Pioneer Balloon Company made this decision. 

As a QBN member, I have had access to the digital version of Images for quite a while. I find it quicker and easier to search through the magazines online, rather than trying to find the relevant hard copy in my large stack of magazines. When the new online version was launched, I was so impressed and excited by the content! Not only does the magazine continue to be a fabulous publication, it is also packed with many additional resources that would never be possible through a printed version like "How To" videos and direct links to other really helpful video resources as well as downloadable images that you can freely use! 

For example, did you know that you can trace a design directly onto an un-inflated Bubble balloon?  I will be definitely trying this out in the future - thank you Steven Shippy, Creative Art Director at Pioneer® Balloon Company for your awesome videos! 

NEW On-Images - with fabulous video step-by-step             

If you have not seen the online version of Balloon Images yet, click HERE - you will love it! 

Images™ and Balloon Magic® are available to read for FREE on The first issue of Balloon  Magic is releasing in March! This is really exciting as up until now Balloon Magic has been a paid subscription! Available on your desktop, laptop, tablet and mobile device, the online issues offer content like you’ve never seen before! With translation into 5 languages, the latest balloon news is now at your fingertips – anytime, anywhere.

So what is The Very Best of 2018?

The Very Best of 2018 - a new annual publication from Qualatex.

Now that Images is no longer printed, the general feeling was that it is important to encapsulate the important and memorable ballooning highlights of 2018, as well as future years to come in a one off annual printed publication. 

Firstly, I must mention the quality of this publication. It's impressive! It truly is a quality paperback, worthy of any coffee table for sure! I might have to buy two, one to flick through and the other to keep pristine and to save as my "do not touch" special copy.  

Zivi Kivi, CBA, host of, referred to it as a "Yummy Magazine, that is a high quality production with a fabulous selection of images that is a celebration to the eyes"! 

Sarah Courtney, of Belle Balloons, Melbourne & Sydney Australia says "The magazine is beautifully presented and displayed a vast range of what the industry has to offer!"

There are fifty one pages packed with so much fabulous content! Here's a sneaky look at what's inside!

There are so many great features, one of my favourites is the Balloon Couture article, which profiles the stunning work of Pop Culture Sculptures, Derek Wong, Stacy Wheeler (aka, Stacy Pineapple) and Emi Jingu. My own ballooning skills do not extend to this incredible art form, their work is truly inspirational! 

Balloon Artist Emi Jingu of p0p0 balloon in Tokyo, Japan, designed these
air-filled works of art modelled in photo shoots in Milan, London, New York and Paris! 

I also loved The Power of Instagram and Decor Trends article - honestly, I loved them all! 

Zivi commented that "there is a really good representation of trends and photographs that show the levels of complexity and how the industry is progressing and changing - organic style decor is king and balloon art is progressing faster than ever visually."

According to the Chinese Zodiac, it was officially the year of the dog. However, it proved to be the year of the llama, mythical creatures, tropical scenes and so much more in the world of balloons! In this issue there is a great article on trends and Jackie Ochitwa, CBA, share's her adorable llama design. I've got to have a go at making one of those!

I would like to conclude by mentioning a fabulous new addition to this publication: Industry Influencers in 2018These influencers, totalling twenty people/businesses, were chosen by their peers through social media channels and surveys. They were selected for inspiring others and for using their keen sense of style and unique offering of imagination to push the industry forward. Being voted as one of the 2018 influencers was a huge honour for me. The balloon industry has grown and changed significantly over the past twenty eight years, and I am both happy and excited that I have grown with the industry and feel that each and every day is a huge learning curve. I am proud to be able to share my passion and what I know with my friends in the ballooning world! 

Each influencer was asked a series of questions, and I have loved reading each and every response and seeing a selection of their awesome work! I have snuck in one of the influencers pages featuring Mr. Rock & Roll of the balloon industry - the fabulous Chris Adamo! Let face it, Chris has helped so many people with his awesome Balloon Design Tools program as well as his incredible sense of style - who will ever forget the after-party decor at WBC 2018! 

I think it will be very interesting to see how the influencers will change each year. Everyone has their own personal hero's, or someone who has inspired them and helped them to grow. If your hero is not listed this year, make sure that you vote next time and explain why you believe that person should make the list.

I cannot say more without sharing the whole publication with you! 

So is this publication worth buying? Yes! Is it packed with design recipes - no, this is not a recipe book, but it is a fantastic annual publication that is a time capsule of the important highlights of 2018. The Very Best of 2018 is sure to educate, inform and remind you of all the exciting trends and world events the balloon industry experienced throughout 2018.

This publication is available for purchase worldwide through an online printer, called Lulu. The cost reflects the actual cost of the printing and shipping, Pioneer Balloon Company does not receive any income from sales. It truly is a gift to the industry, and we hope people will continue to look back on it in years to come as trends evolve over time. 

Click HERE for a direct link or follow this link:
Happy Ballooning!



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Nizam said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Nizam said...
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Nizam said...

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