Cards of the Year Awards

Every year the Greeting Card Association chooses a "Card of the Year."
Here are some winners for the last several years.


2008 Tam Tam Design Studio:
Sweet Birthday Wishes, All for You.


2007 Jumping Cracker Beans:
Let's get together if you have the thyme.


2006 Great Arrow:
Happy Valentine's Day


2005 Meri Meri


2004 Up with Paper:
Happy Birthday


2003 Meri Meri: Wedding


2002 Marcel Schurman:
Happy Birthday Glamour Girl!


2001 Postcards from the Moon


1999 Origami Arquitetura


1998 Great Arrow Graphics
(upside down) Happy Halloween


1997 Silk Spiral Designs:
Get Well Soon


1994 Santoro Graphics

Accountant Becomes Card Designer

I really like this Sri Lankan Greeting Card Artist Segar who gave up accounting to become an artist. He started out by making cards and selling them in a bookshop. His style was based around his experience of living in cramped living situations. More about him in the Sri Lanka Sunday Times.



Homemade CD Envelopes for Art Submissions

The other day my husband brought home a CD from Ubuntu computer company, who made a nifty CD envelope for a promo. I thought it was a great idea for artists who are submitting art to companies. You can do it by just printing a 8 1/2 x 11 sheet of your artwork. It's more of an attention grabber than a traditional CD cover, and is more likely to be picked up out of a pile and opened. It sure got MY attention!

Step 1. Start With a sheet of paper printed on one side (if you have text, note text direction changes in each section).

Step 2 &3 . Fold bottom and sides, and make triangle fold on top.



Step 4: Tuck triangle flap into bottom.

Step 5: Note: Opposite side has an area to design also. Make sure to add your contact info.



Send Your Photos homemade CD covers.


Also See these Books on Art Licensing and Greeting Card Design



ART LICENSING


Booklet on 20 Steps to Art Licensing that is a list of suggested steps to to take for getting into art licensing. How to license your art to companies that publish greeting cards, and manufacture coffee mugs, magnets, wall hangings, kitchen items, and dozens of other gift items. This booklet covers 20 basic steps from how to prepare your art, to what companies to contact. It includes topics on: How to find agents, classes and what trade shows to attend. There are extensive resources on social media, licensing community groups, and lists of interviews with professional designers (5,200 words).








MARKETING CARDS

Booklet on Unusual Ways To Market Greeting Cards, and 22 places to get your designs featured. A 20 page booklet on how to get your cards noticed in non-traditional ways. Everything from why you should send cards to your dentist, to how to get special features in national publications. Great tips for designers who are starting out and want to get their cards into the hands of people beyond friends and family. Special Section: Submissions guidelines and contacts for 22 Gift Industry publications and professional gift industry blogs that seek out new greeting card designs to feature for free. (5,000 Words and 17 greeting card images included)








CARD WRITING


Booklet on 7 Mistakes Greeting Card Writers Make A list of 7 things to avoid when submitting greeting card verse to publishers.

Includes a list of card publishers and their guidelines, links to writer interviews, articles, card samples and other current resources. 20-page booklet and 2,300 words and 8 Pages of Card Samples.


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Greeting Card Tip Contest Book Winner!


Gail from Basin View, Australia was the winner of the book By the Batch by Judi Kauffman for her greeting card tip submissions

After reviewing the submissions, which were all creative ideas, I chose Gail's tip based on my years of teaching, where I consistently found one thing that helped students the most was to find ways to save money on manufacturing. Gail has a good tip on how to use alternative materials to save money, something that is important with handmade cards.

Here is her tip:

For Handmade Cards: Consider using fabric to embellish the card in place of printed paper. Fabric shops are full of all sorts of fabrics in a large range of designs for all occasions. You also get a lot more for your money when compared to the cost of a sheet of preprinted scrapbooking paper or other embellishments. Cut out the bits you want and attach them to the card. You can even machine stitch the fabric on for a unique look or consider fraying the edges a little. (Gail from Basin View, Australia)


Here are some other great tips that were submitted:

Royal Attitude:
Create each card as if you were giving it to royalty (Nancy H.)

Let's Get Medical:
What about designing cards based on someone's DNA? They send in a sample, and the resulting DNA chart is turned into very personalized art! It sure would be neat to receive! (Bonnie)

Start With Words:
If you are stuck for ideas on coming up with designs: first pick an inspirational quote or verse for the card and then let yourself be inspired by it to create the images for it. (Gail)

Speaking from Experience:
I created a template/frame with an open window 4" by 5 1/4". (Most of my A2 cards will have a 4" by 5 !/4" patterned paper layered onto a 4 1/8" by 5 3/8" mat.) I place my template over my paper and lightly pencil where the cuts should be made. This helps me envision how to cut the entire sheet of paper efficiently. One sheet will usually result into 5 cards with both portrait and landscape designs. I try to use glittered, flocked or embossed patterned paper as much as possible for my cards, incorporating the paper itself into the whole design layout. This reduces the number of embellishments and also gives a "cleaner" look to the card. (Linda)

Think of Playful Themes:
Focus on one object like "popcorn" or "puppy kisses." It's amazing what you can create. (Jeanette)

Keeping it Easy:
I discovered an internet-based greeting card company from Utah that allows me to create my own cards. They will print a real paper card, stuff it into an envelope, stamp it and mail it for you. All for less than you'd pay for a card at the store. I can upload jpeg photos and truly personalize the card. They also offer several ways for individuals to earn extra money on the side and try the system for free by creating a sample card. (Ron W)

An Artist Who Knows Retail:
A card tip that I’ve learned from selling to experienced boutique owners: Create cards with non-fade (white/natural) envelopes. Since they extend beyond the card, colored envelopes can develop a fade line (where they extend over the top of the card) over time when exposed to the bright lights in the store. You don’t usually see colored envelopes from the leading card manufacturers, except with seasonal cards, which have a shorter shelf life. (Jean)

Postcard Trick:
When making post cards, I like to provide a circle large enough to accommodate the address. (Sharon)

Think Alternative:
For Handmade Cards: Use seed beads in place of glitter or sprinkles. Seed beads come in a large variety of colors, sizes and textures. They also add a bit more of a 3D feel if that is the effect you are after. (Gail)

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