Saturday, January 2, 2010
Making note cards from your art -Part 3
So you've decided to make note cards from your art, you've decided whether you're going to make them at home or have them printed elsewhere, and you have all your supplies. You're ready to get started designing your cards. I think this is the fun part, and the easy part. (If you have not done the above steps, please see Making note cards from your art-Part 1 and Making note cards from your art-Part 2)
You'll need a computer program that allows you to create cards with images and text, like Print Shop, which is what I have, and I'm happy with it. I can select different styles of cards from a menu, so I don't have to worry about creating my own formatting. The program has many different templates I can choose from, and all I have to worry about is how I want to design them. Style your card any way you wish. You can make them in horizontal or vertical format, depending on the shape of your paintings. If you wish you may crop your images to make them better fit in the card shape. I have not found this to be necessary, but if I had one that was very square-shaped, or very panoramic I might do it if I thought it would improve the look of the card.
It is up to you whether or not to add text anywhere on the card. One suggestion is to add the name of the painting either on the front or back of your cards. I recommend that you at least add your name and some sort of contact information, such as your web address, on the back of the card, in the center, at the bottom. If you want to add the © symbol beside your name (you do own the copyright), and you use Windows, you can do so by typing 0169 while holding down the alt key on your keyboard. If you have a Mac, or it doesn't work for another reason, you could try copying and pasting the symbol from this article, as well.
When you have completed designing your cards, it's time to print! Save your work, and either print it from your home computer, upload it to the custom printing website of your choice, or take the files you wish to print to your local print shop. If you choose to have them cut and folded by the printer, you're done making your cards. Otherwise, you'll still need to cut each sheet of paper down the center to separate it into two pieces, and fold the pieces to make cards. The best way to get a professional look is to use a bone folder, or paper folder. Fold the card perfectly in half, then use the flat side of the tool to press it down and smooth it out. If the cards wrinkle at the fold, or don't stay folded well, score them before folding with the other end of your bone folder, or with a separate paper scorer. (Usually they're sold either as one tool with two different ends, or as two tools packaged together.)
Finally, you have your own note cards featuring your artwork! It's time to decide how you will finish them. You'll need envelopes, of course, which you can find at most office supply stores or online. You'll also need protective packaging, such as boxes or clear bags, if you plan to sell your cards. I use clear folding boxes, and sell them in packs of 8 cards and envelopes. Some are assorted, and some are packages that contain the same image on all 8 cards. If you wish to order packaging online, clearbags.com has an incredible assortment of different sized boxes, bags, and other packaging choices and accessories. There are also plenty of other choices out there that may have a better value for your location, so I recommend you shop around, but at least check them out, simply because their selection is really amazing, and may help you get a better idea of what you're looking for. If you do sell your cards, don't forget include an insert or label that tells the customer (very clearly) exactly what is inside the package!
So that's it! I hope you love your cards, as I do mine. Enjoy!
See more cards on my website.