Updated: Mar 11, 2020
I’ve always been looking into how to maximise my artwork yield. Once an art piece sells, that’s it! It’ s gone, out of your control and all you have are the photos, you may or may not have taken, to remember the art. And that the problem with art. You are constantly having to produce more and more, especially if you specialise with physical and not digital painting While some artists opt to produce art prints of their original work, some, like me like to down the route of merchandise – greeting cards to be more specific.
Of course, I also produce my own art prints and you can check the out here, but I believe producing greeting cards remains a nice way to share your art, sell your art and showcase your brand as an artist. And it’s how I got started making my own collection based on my collection of artworks. It’s super fun and easy to make, and you feel so satisfied with the result and the pleasure of gifting it to someone.
I’m going to explain to you how I made my A6 Greeting cards. From how I packaged them to the things to remember when making cards like these. These work for photographers and illustrators too. Anyone who produces any form of imagery or graphic. Keep reading to find out more.
The way to make these are straight forward, even more straight forward if you have your own printer and card stock, quality of 300 gsm. Since I didn’t have those facilities, I outsourced the printing to a document printing service that would deliver the sheets to me, in the quality I needed.
300 gsm defines the quality thickness of the card and is the standard for most card makers . Any thinner than that, the card is going to look flimsy and cheap looking, and I don’t believe that's the look we’re after, right?
Begin my choosing your artwork. Ideally something quite captivating in your collection. The best way to do this is to examine you existing art, and image the art if they were on your greeting cards. Pick out the ones YOU would buy. Some art pieces lose their magic when reprinted. Ensure to gather a small, varied collection that you know people would be interested in, and defines your art to a T. Again, the point of these are to sell your brand and exposure your art capabilities – and of course earn a little pocket money!
Any good artist would scan their work to their computer. It’s a great tip to keep track of the art your producing and great to add to your online portfolio or social media. These days social media can be regarded as your portfolio. So naturally, you should have a copy of your artwork on a digital file. If you don’t, take a good quality photo or scan the art to your computer. If you have a good quality phone camera, that works too!
And at this point , you want to make sure the artwork looks authentic as possible on the digital copy. You can do this by tweaking your images on Photoshop, or an alternative photo editor. For this I used Krita. It’s free and has most of the Photoshop features! I was amazed with the tool available in the software, and that fact that its totally free to download.
The easiest way to produce an A6 greeting card is by opening a new file on your editing software. On Krita, there is already an A6 format image size that I can open in 300 dpi. Once I hit that button, a blank, white A6 page shows up and that’s when I want to introduce my art.
Open, or simply drag your stylised art on to the blank space. Depending on what size the art is, will depend on how much of it gets cut out. It’s recommended that a you use a tall rectangular sized image so it makes it easier to condense into the white space. Alternatively, you could crop out elements of the art and showcase the main bit. this is what I did with my art which was painted on square canvas. If it’s a pattern or continuous design, this doesn’t really matter.
What you should be left with is your art in the form of an A6 image like above. Simply export this file to JPEG or PNG, so you have a saved file that you can paste on to the A4 file. Simply go to File and then Export.
Open an A4 format image on Krita, and open or drag your A6 Art image over.
Do this twice so both are on the right-hand side of the A4 image, stacked on top of each other like so. This is important. If you choose the left-hand side, your artwork will display on the back of the card rather than the front! We don’t want that! I’ve made this mistake before and it was the worst realisation ever.
You’re now ready to export the A4 file. And the JPEG/PNG would be the file you would send to your local printing service or at home.
Once you’ve printed the cards, you want to cut them horizontally to separate the two cards. The easiest way to do this is with a craft knife and cutting matt – definitely recommended! If you paid to get the pages printed, bare in mind that the cost per sheet is the price you’ve paid for TWO cards.
Score a neat line between the art front and blank back. I used a blunt dinner knife. You could also use palette knife or the edge of something not too sharp. I would stay away from scissors and crafts knives. Remember to do this as neatly as you can. It’s best to use a ruler as a guide, you never know when your hand will slip.
And there! You have your cards. cute, small and striking!
A6 Plastic cello bags are incredibly cheap and are the perfect to make your cards look professional and stand out. Insert an A6 envelope and you’ve got yourself a great greeting card product.
You could even opt for A5 and A4 Cards too. In fact, those are much simpler to do, and there's less cutting involved. Of course the bigger card, the thicker it must be - so do bare that in mind if you wish to maintain the luxury feel.
Get creative! And let me know how you get on by hash-tagging us on social media! Like and share for more creative content like this! #vivekgreetingcards