Let Your Pictures Do the Talking - part 2 of 1 2 3

by David Simm Published 01/08/2002


Nowadays it is such a breeze to make fabulous photo cards that really command attention, moreover people will not throw away a photograph, quite like they would, a plain old letter press business card. That is not speculation, but a proven fact, again back in England during the seventies and eighties, I would run Bridal Evenings in collaboration with other wedding vendors.

We would all put our business cards out around the room and on all the chairs. Come the end of the night and the time to clean up, mine were the only cards conspicuous by their absence, all the plain printed flyers and plain business cards were strewn around the room all over the floor, but more than 90% of my cards had gone.

OK so the cost is a good bit higher than the uninspiring plain old "one minute" business cards, but the investment really is worth it. Whatever you spend on Yellow Pages, newspapers and other forms of print advertising, it is just a shot in the dark, but what better way could there be than to let your best work be your ambassador. Every time you give out a photo business card you run the serious risk that you are going to impress the recipient, you may even be in danger of selling something.

Make a good job of your own cards, and who knows? The idea could take off. Perhaps a local businessman or professional, whom you know well, might even help you get the idea off the ground as a commercial proposition. Suppose you give (yes give - you have to speculate to accumulate) a well known local personality a set of cards for their own use. As those images are circulating they could also be doing some selling for you. Of course you need a pretty charismatic person who is hot on promotion or the idea will fall flat.

The cards you see illustrated here are, with one exception, all from recently shot digital images, all produced with the Olympus E10 and E20 cameras, the occasional torn edge border was added in Professor Franklin's Instant Photo Effects, but most of the work was put together in Photoshop.

The digital files can be output directly to photographic paper by your lab, or using your ink jet printer onto pre-perforated card stock. I put 10: 3.5" x 2" cards onto a 10" x 8" sheet so that I could get the price down for printing. I am now looking into four colour printing to see which will in effect be to most economical. With four colour offset, there is likely to be a minimum of 500 impression run, so I narrowed down my selection to just five of the images and ordered a total of 2,500 cards.

You could probably go to a local camera store that has instant imaging stations and run your own off, some machines print only 6" x 4" amateur size, but you could put three images up onto one file and trim them off, back at the studio.

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