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Billboard Brings Home Gold For Nz Graphic Company

Lord Of The Rings Flying Boeing 747-400 Billboard Brings Home Gold For Nz Graphic Company

Air New Zealand's dramatic Lord of the Rings aircraft image has proved a winner for Hamilton-based graphic and signage specialist Admark Visual Imaging.

The agency's marathon task of reproducing the vast Frodo image and applying it, in 300 separate pieces, around the fuselage of a Boeing 747 in December has just won the Gold Award in the Digital Imaging Design Category in the New Zealand Sign and Display Association's 2003 Awards.

Stretching 36 metres along the fuselage from the rear door to over the wing, the giant decal reaches almost 8 metres in height and runs down both sides of the aircraft.

The image of Elijah Wood as Frodo Baggins and Sean Astin as the Hobbit Samwise Gamgee forms one giant jigsaw stuck to the curved canvas of the Boeing 747 fuselage.

Weighing 60 kilograms the decal, made of specialist aviation marking film, experiences temperatures ranging from - 60C through to +60C between high altitude cruising and sitting on hot airport tarmacs in mid-summer sun.

Tested by the US Air Force, the marking film is perforated to allow for pressurisation changes in the aircraft and designed to withstand speeds of up to 1,000 kilometres per hour.

The Boeing 747-400 is a quarter of the way through its own epic journey of almost four million kilometres during the 12 months it will sport the Frodo image - that's the equivalent of 96 times around the globe. It will visit London approximately 45 times during the year, Los Angeles 165 times, Sydney 50 times and Japan 56 times.

AdMark Visual Imaging also reproduced and applied a giant image of Lord of the Rings characters Aragorn and Arwen to a second aircraft, a Boeing 767 in January which is now flying on Asian, trans-Tasman and Pacific routes.

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