the big picture

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

peonies #1- 5x7 matted photo card with envelope

Well actually ... it's a 5 x 7 picture.

Yesterday I worked most of the day getting ready for my etsy shop opening. It seems what started out as a fairly straightforward idea of selling small high quality prints of both my photographs and some of my illustrations has turned into a job with many, many parts and components. Things have evolved as often these things do. The photographic prints will be printed using a process called giclee - on heavy archival matte finished paper and the illustrations printed on heavy bright white card stock on a big beast of a colour laser printer. I always knew that I would source both a cellophane sleeve to protect the prints and a heavy card mailing envelope - all relatively straightforward, especially now with the world at our keyboard and fingertips.

I first began getting bogged down in choosing a size for the prints - my thinking I wanted it to be easy for my customer to choose and find the ideal frame (please take note of the word ideal). In my picky, picky designer head - not at all an easy task. I'm thinking Ikea - Ribba frames, (because I like them) and oh no, they come in really weird sizes and they're not available to order online, you have to find an Ikea store. Sigh. So right from the get go I am way off course - I'm worrying about frames, molding, sizes, colours - I'm not selling these prints framed, yet I'm becoming way, way too hung up on the frame - not good.

Years ago I was the creative director for a large giftware company and I can remember saying many times in planning meetings to my co-workers. I know I'm way out there, big huge picture, blue sky and all - and it's your job to reel me back in. And they would. Thankfully. My opinion being you never want the creative crowd to feel confined in their thinking and brainstorming, you want them to have the ability to go wild & crazy with ideas. Works great when you're part of a team. When someone can hand you a nice box of parameters and say here you go - this is what you have to work with. It's why I've continued to thrive working for other people, instead of working toward building my own creative empire, it's so much easier when someone hands me the parameters of a project and I'm not left sitting at my desk all day dreaming up my most brilliant and perfect idea (please take note of the word dreaming).

MLou to the rescue yet again. We talked about it over the weekend, a lot. And because she believes in me and wants to see my big dreams come true she has taken on the task and role of parameter hander outer. Thank God ! Also of deadline giver. Merci Beaucoup ! I'm a maniac when a customer gives me a deadline I am extremely conscientious and pride myself on never missing even the tightest of deadlines - but Hello ! give myself a deadline and I will find a billion small, insignificant, unrelated and unimportant tasks that for some reason must be attended to first. What's up with that ? MLou is now my customer. Hallelujah !

I still don't have a final date for my etsy shop opening but I can tell you that the first shop update will include a series of photo cards 5 x 7, the front a small photographic print (3x3 and 3x4 images of life here at 29 Black Street), beautifully matted with an off white mat, ready for framing and the back side of the print opens like a card with a place to write a message. Each photo card will come in a cellophane sleeve, with a kraft colour mailing envelope. I will also have a group of illustrated cards (no mat), same packaging.

Is it a print ready for framing ?
Is it a card to mail to a friend ?
It's both !

and 20 different designs to choose from.
Please stay tuned for more details.


  1. G’morning S,
    Reading your posting this morning makes me think back to those days in the department. Smile. And wouldn’t it have been fun if we’d actually been able to imagine and create “possibility” with a RESEARCH & DEVELOPMENT TEAM rather than a product development department? Sometimes I wonder if everything became as did it because of the restraints put upon the creative team. I really think we could have all soared had we not had our wings clipped regularly by “you know who”.
    Anyway, don’t limit yourself too much my dear. It’s that boundless creativity that brings to the market the new and innovative items that make their own mark in the world. Deadlines and parameters = good
    Restraints and limits = bad
    Glad to hear about your etsy endeavors. Hope to see them soon. If you’re wondering where to get some of these services, printing, cellophane packaging, etc. we really need to have lunch soon. I’ve got some suppliers that may be helpful and save you time in sourcing. Also, maybe we could even inspire each other to finally “get our groove on” and get these ideas materialized, because I too suffer the “big huge picture” syndrome.
    Luv V

  2. I will be watching for your etsy opening. Your offerings sound wonderful, and I am sure from reading your blog regularly that your work will be creative and beautiful.
    They just opened an Ikea store about 45 minutes from me in Cincinnati, in case you need someone to go and place an order for you.

  3. This is so exciting! Can't wait!! :)

  4. Exciting.All the very best for this venture.

  5. I can't wait to get one of your wonderful illustrations on my wall or sitting on a piece of furniture.

    I was creative director of our company for many years and you described the process of hatching the great ideas so perfectly. I used to love those sessions. I didn't execute the final ideas, my artists did, but I could get into the far out zone with the best of them. I'm the one who finally reeled us all in but I felt strongly about nurturing those guys and giving them a lot of room to move around in.

    I can't wait to see your shop. Will you have some illustrations of the pups? That one of...was it Bleet and Jake? was so cute.

  6. Sounds wonderful! I love the idea of a card/print, since that's what I like to do with certain cards anyway. It's good that you have a friend like Mlou, who's willing to help keep you on task, definitely an asset. Can't wait to see what your Etsy shop holds!

  7. Hi Susan.
    First, thank you for stopping by my site to say hello. And thank you for your continued prayers. It means alot to have people you know (and don't know) caring and praying hard.

    Secondly, please keep me posted on your Etsy shop. I'd love to stop by!


  8. Beautiful peonies...don't they photograph well? I even think I got some great shots of mine and don't consider myself a great picture taker....

    I'm so happy that you are going to get the etsy up and running... looking forward to all the goodies...

    I found this cute blog about amazing cats the other know I love cats...perhaps you can check it out some time.


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