100+ Free Photoshop Frame Brushes To Decorate Your Designs

To see all 100 brushes go to DesignBeep...


On an artist's budget? 
Always check out the prices of used or discounted copies of the photoshop and other graphic software before investing in new versions.  Sometimes you can get an older version that works for your needs.

Ebooks 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. You can also view the list of all recommended greeting card books by a variety of authors.


Get Your Greeting Cards into Stores explains how to sell cards nationwide. Included are detailed guidelines on: How to price cards for a profit, get professional feedback, find sales representatives and follow industry standards. Information is also applicable to gift items, magnets, journals, calendars, collectibles, etc.

20 Steps to Art Licensing is a book about how to license your art to companies that publish greeting cards, or manufacture coffee mugs, magnets, wall hangings, kitchen items, and dozens of other gift items. Learn how to prepare your art, what companies to contact, how to find agents, and what trade shows to attend. Includes extensive resources on social media, copyrights, licensing community groups, and lists of interviews with professional designers.

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.

Unusual Ways To Market Greeting Cards, and 22 places to get your designs featured is a 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 a special feature in national publication. 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: 22 Gift Industry Trade Publications who seek out new greeting card designs and feature artists for free.

How to Make an EBook Cover for Non-Designers is an illustrated book will show you how to make your own e-book cover, even if you are not a designer. It is intended to help the indie writer who is on a budget and wants to publish and sell their own book in online stores such Amazon.com and the Apple ibookstore. Selling your book in these stores will allow readers to purchase your book and read it on multiple devices such as the Kindle, iPad, iPhone and many other electronic devices.


How to License Greeting Card Designs

Check out this great article on designing greeting cards from The Moon From my Attic Blog. Read complete Article...

How to get your art published (licensed or sold) on cards:

1. Choose a holiday (valentine's) or sending situation (birthday-feminine) to work on.

2. Design a dozen and include your best art skills, typography, color, sentiment, trends and just work on the cover - not the inside - for now.

3. Work to size (5 x 7 approx.), use your best paper, pens -whatever your medium is.



How to be funny: According to Bill Abbott

I know most of you have seen Bill's comics and have gotten a good chuckle out of them. If you are like me, you find humor can be difficult when it comes to creating greeting cards. I asked Bill if he would mind writing an article on humor and tell us how he approaches it. He was kind enough to contribute the following tips on how to be funny. To see more of his work, visit his website . -Kate


Writing humor, for me, is an absolute joy. To think that people pay me to think up funny stuff, then draw the scenario using my goofy-looking characters, never ceases to bring up a sense of extreme gratitude. I’ve been asked about the broad perspective and process of developing visual humor, so here goes.

First, there is no shortage of inspiration. Every day slices of life, when viewed from the right perspective, provide lots of potential nuggets of humor. Take your average husband and wife and the things we all experience in the course of time. Perhaps the thoughts that goes through a bride or groom’s mind just before committing to a lifelong partnership. Using this as a starting point, I came up with a couple standing at the altar, the groom asking nervously, “For better or worse? How much worse?” – a reasonable question when you think about it.

For those of us with children, the well of humor is positively bottomless. When my youngest son was in the midst of potty training, an event occurred that I have yet to capture in a cartoon – primarily because he may not wish to have it widely known once he’s old enough to begin dating. But it’s lurking in the back of my mind. As my little boy demonstrated some level of ability in using the bathroom, I would close the door to give him some privacy while I stood just outside. If the process took overly long, I would develop varying degrees of concern.

On this one particular day, based on the length of his bathroom visit, and on sounds that you don’t normally associate with such a visit, I became greatly concerned. Upon opening the door, I found my son standing facing the toilet, with his little hands on the edges of the bowl for support. I would describe his expression, but it was not visible to me. You see, he was dipping the top of his head into the toilet as though he was washing his hair. Upon hearing my gasp of concern, his head snapped up, flinging water onto the wall behind him, and setting his hair into a shark fin-like blade atop his head, wearing an expression of, “Is this bad?” on his little face. That moment will be forever transfixed in my memory. Yes, the well of humor runs deep indeed with children.

There are innumerable situations in the work place that, when you think about it, provide fertile ground for humor. I’ll bet that the policy manual for nearly any corporate entity in the United States and abroad could leave one in stitches when read objectively. And how about some of the topics covered in your typical corporate training programs? Fertile ground indeed.

In nearly any facet of modern life, whether it’s school, work, home, or the newspaper, there is a veritable cornucopia of humorous topics and events. How about politicians? Listen to them speak for just a little while, and you’ll come to appreciate how much humor they can pack into each and every sentence – not that that is their intention mind you. Even your typical news channel is chock full of funny events that the best humor writers in the world couldn’t come up with – ever watch Cops?

Whether you write, draw, or speak humor, you need only look around you for an abundance of possibilities. It’s not the event itself that needs to be funny – just the perspective from which you view it. Therein lies the secret.


Bill lives in beautiful western New York with his wife and two sons. He has served over eighteen years in the U.S. military, including service in Iraq, and other places. His art has appeared in Reader's Digest, in Mead Westvaco and American Greetings calendars, in greeting cards, books, magazines and a long, long list of other products and publications worldwide. Bill's cartoons have been licensed to numerous companies to produce everything from figurines, greeting cards, cocktail napkins - you name it.

WEBSITE: http://billabbott.weebly.com/index.html

BLOG: http://billabbottcartoons.com/



Free Book Today on the "Sharing Economy"

I just finished writing a book on Peer-to-Peer Sharing, a directory of new ways people use the mobile web to connect to each other in order to exchanges goods and services.

This ebook is available today for free at http://goo.gl/p9pci on Amazon. It can be read on multiple mobile devices and your computer.

For artists, some of these groups are quite relevant like Skillshare.com (for teaching art classes) and Kickstarter (for acquiring funds for art projects) I have collected over 100 unusual organizations I find personally interesting that are involved in this new emerging economy.

Book Description:
Peer-to-Peer sharing is happening all around us. By using the social web and mobile apps we can meet up with like-minded people all over the country to borrow items, save money, make money, or help out an organization. We can swap clothes, find a taxi mate, rent out parking space, or lead our own specialized tour that goes off the beaten path.

This guide is a list of peer-to-peer networks that:

-Exchange goods or services.
-Is conducted through a website or mobile app.
-Allows the recipient to save money, giver to make money from underutilized goods.
-In some cases items are free and can be borrowed.
-These groups encourage less consumption and waste, and have a positive impact on the environment.