Card Therapy

Feeling Blue, Need a chuckle? Here's a crash course in making your own cards.

Things to avoid in Card Design Tip 2



Black and White Cards

Black and white cards, with no other colors, can be difficult to sell. Unless you are using block prints or paper with a deckled edge, your chances of selling a card with these two colors can be limiting. Black and white cards don't always jump out at customers on the store shelf. Remember, you are competing with all the other multiple colored cards.

If you add color to a predominantly black and white card, you can use colored paper with a colored envelope. You can also try unusual patterns or textures. Be creative and throw a splash of red or orange onto the card by using a rubber stamp.

3 Things to avoid in Card Design


Faces

There are a few things you might want to think about when it comes to making the design. Putting realistic faces on cards can be risky. You can run into legal problems if you print a photograph of someone who has not given you permission.

Also, customers often have a specific person in mind when they buy a card. If someone wants a birthday card for their mother and the picture on the card is of a young model, they may feel it’s inappropriate for their mother. A Hispanic or Afro-American customer may not want to buy a Caucasian face.

If you have to use faces, make them vague, so they don't look like anyone in particular. The only exception to this would be if you are specializing in a line of ethnic cards or are using caricatures in humorous cards.


Black and White Cards



Black and white cards, with no other colors, can be difficult to sell. Unless you are using block prints or paper with a deckled edge, your chances of selling a card with these two colors can be limiting. Black and white cards don't always jump out at customers on the store shelf. Remember, you are competing with all the other multiple colored cards.

If you add color to a predominantly black and white card, you can use colored paper with a colored envelope. You can also try unusual patterns or textures. Be creative and throw a splash of red or orange onto the card by using a rubber stamp.


Horizontal cards


Horizontal cards are a problem for retail stores. Although they might be more attractive and easier to design, they use up too much shelf space. Every square inch of retail space is worth money and horizontal cards take up more space than vertical ones.

This doesn't mean that you can't design this type of card, but avoid designing your entire line with horizontal cards, so the store has a choice.

Great Website for Free-Form Painting


This is a great, award winning website where you can paint like Jackson Pollock. Just click once and move your mouse around and make beautiful paint splattered design. It doesn't feel like you are on a computer at all!

Breaking into the Greeting Card Writing Market

Article and resources for greeting card writers.
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Books on Writing Card Sentiments ~




You Can Write Greeting Cards This hands-on guide features practical instruction and exercises that teach beginners how to survey the market, find their niche, and write greetings cards that say just the right thing.




A Guide to Greeting Card Writing All forms are discussed in detail: conventional verse and prose, personal relationship cards, humor, juvenile, inspirational, etc. Detailed info on how to submit and sell your work to greeting card markets. All the nuts and bolts of both the creative art and the publishing market.



Write Greeting Cards Like a Pro Moore knows the ins and outs of the greeting card business. In this hands-on guide, she offers practical instruction, idea joggers, and exercises that will teach you how to survey the market, find your niche, and write greeting cards that say just the right thing. From humor to inspirational writing, Moore profiles the special needs of each greeting card category and also shows you how to spot new trends, so you can write the cards publishers are seeking today.



The Freelance Writing for Greeting Card Companies This book targets important areas a writer needs to know in regards to being self-employed, as well as, how to own a small greeting card business. It covers Internet to explore the technology which has opened the door for freelance writers and artists. You will find web sites that will offer a variety of freelance writers opportunities never before known or unreachable outside the Internet world such as: chat rooms, bulletin boards, or forums so writers can communicate with other writers. This type of networking is ideal for finding answers or obtaining valuable information about a company, organizations, writing groups, and available resources.


How to Write and Sell Greeting Cards, Bumper Stickers, T-Shirts and Other Fun Stuff A successful freelancer shares her years of experience and advice in writing for the "social expression market".




Thinking of You: A Card Greeting for Every Occasion This little books helps to jump start your thinking to make messages for cards.




Finding the Right Words: Perfect Phrases to Personalize Your Greeting Cards More than three dozen ways to say "Happy Birthday” for new family members...even pets. Includes thoughtful condolences for personalizing sympathy cards and congratulatory wishes for weddings and anniversaries. There are helpful hints to simplify card-sending and a monthly calendar for birthdays and anniversaries. This is a book of phrases for all occasions.






Ebook by Kate Harper

You can support this blog by ordering Kate's e-Booklets starting at only .99 cents! They can be read on your kindle, ipad, ipod, cellphone, or your computer. Free samples and lending options available. 



7 Mistakes Greeting Card Writers is a booklet that explains what to avoid when submitting greeting card verse to publishers. Learn how to create a trendy card that reflects the contemporary world we live in, and how to use your own personal experience to create card verse. Topics include: how to avoid limiting your market, when to use adjectives, not creating card for enemies, write like people talk and a list of why card sentiment submissions are often rejected. You can increase your odds of success by 60% just by doing a few simple things. Includes a list of card publishers and their guidelines, links to writer interviews, and writing exercises for how to create good verse.

About This Blog



Editor

Kate Harper is a professional greeting card designer and has written for Lark Books, San Francisco Examiner, and National Public Radio, along with several independent publications. Kate cards designs have been published by Recycled Paper Greetings, American Greetings, Leanin' Tree, and Design House Greetings. She has designed hundreds of gift sold in Target, Cost Plus, Trader Joe's, Bed Bath & Beyond, Fedex, along with hundreds of independent retailers.


Guest Writers 

Kathy Krassner former editor-in-chief of Greetings etc. magazine, is the owner of Krassner Communications, a writing-services firm specializing in the stationery and gift industries, based in Ringoes, NJ. krascom@yahoo.com

Meryl Hooker is a manufacturers representative, writer, speaker, sales coach and all around Sales Rockstar. She is the writer of “Road Rage”, a blog about repping and selling and co-author of the forthcoming book, Pushing The Envelope: The Small Greeting Card Manufacturer’s Guide to Working with Sales Reps (Center Aisle Press, May 2010). She lives in Washington, DC and can be reached via www.merylhookersales.com

Mike Hartnett Creative Leisure News, serving professionals in the arts & crafts industry.

Tara Reed is very active online and using new internet tools in her business, Tara has also created a resource for artists looking for recommendations for learning and implementing their creative businesses online. You can see what she has discovered at www.ArtMarketingWithTara.com

Jim Marcotte and his wife, artist and author Ronnie Walter, founded Two Town Studios in 2000. Two Town Studios is a successful art licensing and brand development agency representing 8 experienced artists.



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10 More Days to Enter Free book Raffle

Submit your favorite Card Design Tip to be posted on this blog. Whoever sends the most unusual tip will receive a copy of the Greeting Card Book By the Batch by Judi Kauffman. Afterward, tips will be posted here. Deadline June 10th. Submit a many as you want. (All emails will be kept private) Email Submission Here.

New Art Licensing Info

Art of Licensing Magazine has new information on updates of Art Licensing Trends.

Greeting Card Award Winner Interview



What it's like to win the Louie Greeting Card Award

There's nothing more important in the greeting card business than winning a "Louie" Award, the academy awards for greeting cards. The annual Louie competition, which is sponsored by the Greeting Card Association, is open to all greeting card publishers, and each year the competition receives hundreds and hundreds of entries from all over the world.

This year, the National Stationery show was certainly more exciting for Mary Beth Cryan than shows in past. This year she won a Louie Award for her seasonal card she designed for the Museum of Modern Art.

I asked her what it was like. She said:

"The Museum of Modern Art nominated two cards that I conceptualized, illustrated, and engineered for them. When I found out that both of the cards were finalists for the Louie Award, I decided to book a ticket to the Award Gala.

The night of the award ceremony was very exciting. It was at Capitale which is a beautiful, historic, repurposed bank. The food was great and I had some very nice conversation with my table mates before the awards were announced.

My categories were among the last announced which was a bit torturous. As they presented my category a large picture of my card and the competition's graced the large screen above the presenters. As they announced the winner, time stood still. It sounded like, "And the winner is The MMMMMMMMMMUUUUUUUUUSSSSSSSEEEEEEEUUUUUM of Modern Art". That was my card!

The spotlights swirled around and stopped on my table. I stood up as everyone clapped. It was a very exciting moment. One I will not forget. After the rest of the awards were announced I collected my Louie, and it is now sitting in a prominent spot in my living room. It is wonderful to be recognized for my hard work in the field. I am so thankful to the MoMA and the greeting card industry for appreciating my work."

Go Mary Beth! An inspiration to us all.
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