Designing Business Cards for Artists
As I’ve mentioned, I have a couple of openings coming up soon, and one of the goals that I listed for this year was to produce new business cards. I had made some a couple of years ago — printed them on my inkjet printer using tear-able sheets — and comparing them to the professional ones that several artists have given me & I’ve saved for posterity — they are truly tear-able / terrible.
With literally a week to go, I needed to come up with something fast. I had been toying with the idea of using a non-standard size. I googled best cards for artists and came up with oodles of original ideas. The biggest take away from that was that one of the easiest ways to make your card stand out was to either make it a different size from a standard card — or make it out of non-standard materials. Knowing the enormous amount of time that could go into making cards out of fabric — like mini Artist Trading Cards — I decided that the mini-moo’s were probably the best way to go with my limited time table.
The mini moo’s are from moo.com — they are half the size of a typical business card (in length). I debated using someone local — but in the end, I was able to design a card using their template in a short amount of time, upload it, and still get them back quickly.
I knew that one side would have my information. I debated adding a QR code — I had actually convinced someone else to use one recently & researched how to make one — but it just didn’t make sense in terms of size on the mini-moo.
The other side would essentially be part of my brand — so I had to think carefully about what I would use. It would stand for my work as a whole — but it had to be small enough to look good on a mini-moo.
In the end, I went with a small closeup shot from a piece I made a few months ago — an eyeball. I am fairly proud of this eyeball — I love the color and it gives you an idea of the depth that I put into my pieces while still being small enough to fit on the card. I did end up trimming the sides with black to even it up with the template and help make the picture pop.
I’ll concede that I also used an eyeball on my last business cards. The majority of my work in the last few years has been portraits so it makes sense to me to use an eyeball. A full portrait would not have stood out on a mini-moo — the eyeball seems just right.
I used rush printing but regular shipping. I was ordering on a Thursday & moo.com printed them on Friday & shipped them out. I received them, surprisingly, on Monday.
The picture is dark — but I expected that. Monitors use the RGB (red green blue) color model — and printers use CMYK (cyan magenta yellow key or black) — and my Photoshop Elements isn’t advanced enough for me to use professional printing standards. I still think it looks fine.
It is also matte. I wanted gloss — but that isn’t available with rush printing. C’est la vie. I still think they look professional.
Notice I used different fonts. I think that mixing fonts can be an effective way to draw the eye. The font for “textile paintings” is more drawn out than the one above it. My name at the top is in bold & in a larger font. The combination draws the eye to the name.
The email address & website are variations on the name so they’re in the same font as the name at the top. The phone number is in the same font as the subtitle “textile paintings” — I think it makes the numbers easier to read.
For a long time, I had “Fiber Artist” as my subtitle — both on my cards and on my website — but I’ve come to see that that is not as accurate a description as I should have. I work in fiber as a medium — and I am an artist — but my pieces have a strong relation to paintings and I think it’s important to acknowledge that. I am often told by people that glance at my pieces that they think that they ARE paintings. “Textile Paintings” describes my work better.