Saturday, December 8, 2012

Should You Print Your Own Business Cards?

I recently had to have new business cards made. I could keep using the same ones over and over but I get bored easily and like to keep designing new ones....I guess it is my idea of a hobby...well that and old movies. 

 "Fairy Tale Eggplants And Mushrooms" 10 x 20 Oil on Panel

I meet alot of other painters and can tell a great deal about them by the type of card they hand out. It seemed to be a perfect topic for a blog post.....

The first thing I thing about when thinking about business cards is will the image fit well. The number two mistake I see (we'll get to number one later) is the wrong size image for a card...or worse, no image on your card. I know a very famous artist who has no image on his card, just a design. Looks like a card an accountant would give you. In my opinion, the image on your card should fit the size (standard is 2 x 3.5), and should be a good example of the work you do. If you love painting nudes, but make all of your money painting's probably a good idea to put your best dog painting on the card. Sounds like common sense right? I can't tell you how many times I have been out and heard "Well this is my personal card, I ran out of cards with dogs on them" and guess who just lost a sale.

The number one mistake I see is an amateur trying to make their own business card. Unless you are a very skilled graphic designer, NEVER make your own cards. I am constantly laughing at bad home printed cards. I love the ones that are so thin they look like they were printed on a paper towel. Any professional will look at the card and think, "Oh, a homemade business card.....and toss it in the garbage. On the other hand, I remember and save really nice cards. There are so many companies offering great deals on Business cards. Some as low as twenty dollars. Think about it, why look like a fool for twenty dollars....but it happens. Vistaprint and Modern Postcard are just two that I have used. Vistaprint is cheap but tricky. If you upload the entire image yourself you have to get the entire thing inside the white dotted line or it will crop too close. Make your border around the card just a little thicker just to be safe. It will look deliberate, and save you alot of hassle. The thicker paper alone and glossy finish are worth the money. I pay extra to have my blog, website, phone number, etc printed in B/W on the back. Your business card instantly tells someone how professional you are - keep that in mind.

Above is my new card. It's a bit more whimsical then the one above it which was the most recent. I'll probably go more traditional on the next one, or maybe even a light card as opposed to a dark one. I order 250 at a time and change the image often. Every image I have put on a business card has sold from someone getting the card and asking "Is this for sale?"

I would also suggest keeping the size standard. I once had someone give me a slightly oversized card thinking that it would stand out. It did stand out, but it also didn't fit in my wallet nicely so I threw it away.....

Happy Carding!!


  1. Your new card is whimsical, and masterful, at the same time! I really like it Clint. Just want to mention: as another fine site for business cards ... you can even order a selection of images, to represent a collection.
    ~ M xxo

    1. Thanks so much!! I'll have to check out moo, never heard of them.

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