Mesmerized by the printing happening right before their eyes

Roland DG Spreads the Excitement of Creation at Maker Faire Kyoto 2024

06/14/2024 Corporate Activities, Events & Tradeshows, Digital Printing

Roland DG sponsored Maker Faire Kyoto 2024, held on April 27-28 at the Keihanna Open Innovation Center (KICK) in Kizugawa City/Seika Town, Kyoto. At our booth, visitors experienced the joy of creation using our latest desktop flatbed UV printer.

An event to enjoy, connect, and learn by making

Maker Faire is a festival where “Makers” come together, utilizing unique ideas and new technologies to create things that surprise everyone and fulfill individual desires. Makers exhibit and demonstrate their work, allowing visitors to freely interact with them. Originating from the United States, Maker Faires are held in various cities worldwide, including Tokyo and Kyoto in Japan.

Maker Faire Kyoto was first held in 2019. After being held online due to COVID-19, it returned to a face-to-face format in 2023 after a four-year hiatus. This year, approximately 130 groups exhibited, with a notable increase in participation from students and university laboratories.
Click here for more details about Maker Faire Kyoto 2024

  • A bustling venue filled with excitement

    A bustling venue filled with excitement

  • Various indoor and outdoor exhibits

    Various indoor and outdoor exhibits stimulated children’s curiosity.

The sponsorship began when a human resources person seeking to expand connections with students interested in fabrication attended the Maker Faire, which our internal fabrication club Yara:Makers had been exhibiting at for years. Feeling that the Maker Faire concept of “enjoy, connect, and learn by making” resonated with our company’s purpose of “empowering creativity and excitement worldwide,” we decided to sponsor Maker Faire Kyoto for the first time.
In collaboration with Yara:Makers, we set up a booth aiming to increase our brand awareness among makers and to attract students from the Kansai region (south-western Japan) as potential employees.

Visitors enjoy making with the latest UV printer and interactive art device

At our booth, visitors created original coasters using the latest VersaSTUDIO BD-8 desktop flatbed UV printer. Collaborating with Yara:Makers, we showcased the interactive art device “SPIRO MAKER UV,” allowing visitors to generate geometric graphics by operating knobs and to print them on coasters using the BD-8. Over 120 visitors, including families and students, enjoyed this experience over the two days.

  • The BD-8 UV printer

    The compact desktop-sized BD-8 UV printer can print on materials like plastic and leather.

  • Geometric design diatomite coasters

    Printing self-designed geometric graphics on diatomite coasters

  • Creating geometric graphics with SPIRO MAKER UV

    An interactive art device “SPIRO MAKER UV” allows anyone to create beautiful geometric graphics easily.

  • An interactive art device "SPIRO MAKER UV"

    Pattern and color variations are changed by operating three knobs.

  • Children experiencing printing

    Many children came to experience printing.

  • Visitors focusing on the BD-8

    The BD-8, unveiled for the first time at a maker-focused event, attracted attention from visitors keen on new technology.

  • Visitors observing the printing process

    Visitors observed the actual printing process.

  • Visitors observing the printing process

    Mesmerized by the printing happening right before their eyes

At the adjacent Yara:Makers booth, visitors drew geometric graphics created with the SPIRO MAKER on postcards using our 1986 pen plotter, the DXY-990. A pen plotter is a device that moves a pen horizontally (X axis) and vertically (Y axis) to draw diagrams. Visitors experienced the evolution of technology from the pen plotter in the Showa period to the latest UV printer, and the timeless concept of “enjoying creation easily.”

  • Experiencing the pen plotter

    First-time experience with the pen plotter; some visitors tried both the pen plotter and UV printer.

  • Drawing with the pen plotter

    The technology of using pens to draw on pen plotters led to today’s inkjet printers.

Supporting the next generation of student makers

Maker Faire is dedicated to cultivating future Makers by providing strong support to Young Makers (student makers) and extending the reach of the maker community. In a project where sponsors and organizing staff, including Roland DG, commend student makers’ works, we selected two schools: Kyoto Sangyo University and Seian University of Art and Design. Their pursuit of new expressions and possibilities while enjoying digital fabrication was highly appreciated.

  • Students awarded for their virtual fireworks experience device

    Kyoto Sangyo University’s Fab Space was awarded for their virtual fireworks experience device.

  • Making fireworks shells

    Integrating analog and digital methods, children can enjoy the process of creating and launching fireworks.

  • Students awarded for their costume

    Seian University of Art and Design’s “fabco” fab space was awarded for a costume combining mesh material and 3D printing.

  • Costume

    A costume beautifully expressing the flow of water on the body

Exploring Maker Faire’s potential through regional events

We spoke with Hideo Tamura, the organizer at O’Reilly Japan, Inc., about their efforts at Maker Faire Kyoto.
“While personal creation events are usually held twice a year in Tokyo, we actively host Maker Faire events in regional areas to make it easier for the next generation of children and students to participate. With support from Kyoto Prefecture and other institutions, Maker Faire Kyoto, held in the Keihanna Science City (Kyoto, Osaka, and Nara), stands out as a unique event compared to Tokyo. It’s easier for students from the Kansai region to participate and exhibit, and there has been growing interaction with exhibitors from outside the region. This year, innovative student projects caught the eye. Since Maker Faire does not follow a specific theme every time, it’s hard to describe its charm in a single phrase, but we encourage you to join and feel the excitement yourself.”

Spreading the joy of creation through digital technology

Roland DG has been developing products to make digital fabrication accessible and enjoyable for many years. Our compact and user-friendly digital tools like UV printers and milling machines are widely used in makerspaces worldwide.

We were overwhelmed by the passion of makers at Maker Faire Kyoto and are delighted that many visitors, especially children, enjoyed making at our booth. Our interactions with participating schools and schools using our products deepened, providing opportunities for them to learn about our business. We will continue our activities to spread the charm of creation in the future.

  • Children observing the printing process

  • Children observing the printing process