Thursday, February 24, 2022

Plymouth library Creative Lab reopens to public

The creative lab at the Plymouth District Library has reopened for visitors.

The lab currently features two 3D printers, a large format printer, a Cricut cutter and six computers with the Adobe Creative Suite. Additional tools will follow on a rotating basis, said Library Director Shauna Anderson. The library envisions this space as an ever-changing place of exploration and creation, with new tools and experiences being featured at different times, she added. 

The creative lab first opened in February of 2020, shortly before COVID-19 required the library to temporarily close and it had remained closed due to distancing requirements. With the return of in-person programming, the library has once again opened the space to the public with a re-imagined purpose.  

 “In our current climate, people want to get out of the house, explore new interests, and make something tangible. We are so excited to reopen this space to help our community do all of that and more.” Anderson said.

The Adobe Creative Suite is a collection of more than 20 powerful programs for graphic design including Photoshop, Illustrator, and Lightroom. Students and designers can access these typically subscriber-only tools for free in the  creative lab.  

The 3D printers are Prusa MINIs that can print objects up to 7 inches square. The library will be using PLA filament/plastic in the printers. 3D printers will be operated by staff. Patrons can submit items to be printed anytime by emailing their design to People who do not know how to design a 3D object can use a free software available online at Print rates will be 10 cents per gram of filament plus $1 per hour of printing. 

The large format “poster” printer is an HP Designjet T930 with a 36-inch-wide paper roll and 1200 inches in length. The cost for prints will be 40 cents per inch for color and 20 cents per inch for black and white prints. Patrons can submit designs to be printed on the large-format poster printer to Staff will advise patron of the cost of the job before printing. Patrons can pick up the poster once completed. 

Currently, the creative lab will be open for the public to use on Thursdays only. Additional days and tools will be added over time as staffing allows and new tools become available, Anderson said.