Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Stocking Stuffers, A Treasury

One of my scrap packs was featured in a lovely treasury on Etsy today! :)
The lovely Alphabulous chose some really great items!  The task of finding fun & enjoyable items for stockings has always been one I haven't enjoyed, so I was thrilled with the selection!
Go take a look! :)

Monday, October 20, 2008

Moving

My Etsy shops may look a little different lately.  I've emptied out (well, kind of) while I get ready to move!!

The short story is this...

My husband and I have lived in North Carolina for the past four years while he went to school.  He's finished now and so we'll be moving back home to Maryland around the first of November.  We're absolultely thrilled to be going back home!

Anyway, while I've been packing, I've listed some of my supplies on BitsyCreations.etsy.com.  They're terribly on sale!  Be sure to check them out.  And if you're dying to have me design a logo, business card, banner, etc. for you, just let me know!  I have a waiting list going. ;) 

I'll be up and running again--hopefully--by November 5th.

Friday, October 17, 2008

By Popular Demand...

In case you missed it, a few weeks ago I put together a little holiday promotion postcard. I love to spread the word about Etsy and thought the holidays would be the perfect time!
I offered to put a photo of your products on the postcard, print them, & send them out with my orders.
I also made it available for download so you could get them printed or print them yourself!

Well, the response has been incredible! I have had numerous inquiries about how to get on this postcard! The idea has been loved! So I'm doing it again!

Unfortunately, I can't print many of these as I did get a bunch of the last batch printed & am still handing them out, but I'll absolutely make it available for you to print. Plus others will see it here on my blog when they stop by.

So if you'd like to be included, just give me a shout & let me know which item from your shop you'd like on the card. I have space for
7
shops (and this is FREE!). Here's what the card looks like. (It's a 5x7 inch front & back.)

Or maybe you want a postcard all to yourself? I'm now offering to customize this one-sided postcard with six of your own product photos! For $15, I'll put in your photos, change the etsy web address, and send you the high resolution file ready to have printed (or print yourself)! Just e-mail me the photos or tell me which ones from your shop to use & I'll pull them from the web myself. You can purchase by checking out below. (Simply choose Paypal or Google Checkout with the buttons below. (I also RME, but of course, couldn't figure out their buttons. Bah!)  This is also available in my Etsy shop, BitsyCreations.etsy.com.


Friday, October 10, 2008

Understanding Graphic Design

For any small business owner, pricing is of great importance!  I've had quite a few potential clients e-mail me to discuss pricing.  So I thought I'd take a few moments to explain just what goes in to designing a logo and why design work is priced the way it is!

Logo design is a process.  You may be looking at some logos out there that are quite simple and think it takes the designer 5 minutes to complete.  Take a minute.  Think about the logos out there that stand out the most.  A very simple apple.  A giant yellow 'M'.  I "heart" NY.  Simple, simple, right?  And it's true--if I were to copy one it WOULD take a matter of minutes.

But that's not what logo design is!  Let's look at the process.  (I know many designers who would do this differently, but this is how I do it.)

#1--A discussion with the client.  This is generally just a get-to-know-you session so I can understand a bit more about my client and his or her company.  What does she sell?  Who is his target audience?  Does she have ideas for her logo?  What inspires him?

#2--Brainstorming.  This often includes some pretty extensive research about what my client actually does.  This is a lot easier when my client has given me as much information in our discussion as possible.  But often clients don't know exactly what they want so the designer does a lot of brainstorming.  Personally, I LOVE this part because I can think, think, think & plan in my head.

#3--Sketching.  Now that I have ideas in my head, it's time to sketch them out and see if they'll actually work.  Truth be told, I don't always do this.  I'm absolutely in love with my brain (well, not absolutely) because I have the sketch right up there!  I do tend to "sketch" on the computer, though, instead of free-hand on paper.

#4--Actual design work.  Pretty self-explanatory.  I just sit down and create the actual design and then send to you for review!

#5--Edits.  Depending on how much you are in love with the initial design, this could take moments or months!  No joke.  I've had clients where we've worked for months.  Now, I'm not working on the design every day during that month, but this is more thought on the part of the client now.  Color changes, font changes, placement, adding more detail, etc.

#6--Final Files.  At this point, I take the time to save the file in a variety of formats so my client can use them wherever and whenever she needs--web and print use in a variety of formats.  I also have started putting together information files that include the colors and fonts I used in the design.  This all takes time.

#7--Other designs.  Most of my clients don't order *just* the logo.  You need more for your business, don't you?  Web header or banner, business card, stationery/letterhead, web ads, product tags, etc.  Of course I charge more for these items.  Each one takes time and more effort.  Logos are generally very simple.  That's how they should be--eye-catching, easy to remember, etc.  So when designing the other items such as a business card or web header, I need to bring in more detailed design work for backgrounds and such.

If I've designed for you, you know I practically bend over backward to help ensure you're 100% happy with the end result.  I offer help wherever I can.  I keep all my files so if your e-mail address or phone number changes, I can edit that quickly.  Some designers charge for this, others include it in the initial design cost.  Again, time and effort.

If the process wasn't enough, you do need to understand that when you have a logo designed for you, you have the rights to the design when you're through.  You can use the logo OVER and over and over.  This may be obvious, but that is why a logo costs more than a web banner/header design.  This is also why designers are careful to mention that if they design a web banner for you, you are only allowed to use it as a web banner.

I hope this helps understand design work a bit better.  I adore what I do.  I love getting to know new people and I thoroughly enjoy creating an image for their companies.  It's such an exciting process.  I'm a little saddened, though, when clients expect me to create, create, create and edit, edit, edit without taking the time to understand what is involved on my part.  I'm sorry if any of this sounds a bit defensive.  I read a little blurb earlier today where someone had very openly and clearly announced that she thought design work was an easy and simple project worth only pennies.  I'm thrilled that this isn't the normal reaction.  Many out there know that you pay for what you get & as an artist, I appreciate that greatly!

Sunday, October 5, 2008

Birthdays

Well, my birthday is in about a month.  I won't tell you which one... it's a big one--Ha!

Anyway, I don't know what I want.  I've always loved birthdays but haven't had the best luck in actually having a good birthday!!

I'd love for this birthday to be enjoyable.  I'm definitely a "it doesn't matter what I get" kinda gal, but I think my hubby is getting sick of trying to figure out what I'd like.

Our conversations go a little something like this:
"What do you want for your birthday?"

"I don't know."

"How about a ......?"

"No."

"How about.... ?"

"Mmm... no..."

"So what do you want?"

"I don't know."


So what do you think?  What do I want for my birthday?
Ha!  Just kidding.
I do want to know what you've purchased lately that you love, though.  Etsy or anywhere else.
Share!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Meet Buster

Meet Buster the Dog! He is a sweet little guy I designed for the lovely lady at ChearieFaerie. I've wanted to make paper dolls from my designs for quite some time, so when I saw an alchemy request on Etsy for this project, I litterally jumped at the chance!
The best part about Buster is that he's a MAGNET doll! He comes complete with food & water, treats, collars, a dog bed, a leash, and--my personal favorite--a froggy Halloween costume! Hooray!
Buster is available for purchase in ChearieFearie's shop for $10: http://cheariefearie.etsy.com. Make sure to take a look around while you're there--she has some really great products including other magnet dolls featuring artwork from other Etsy artists.

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