I have been working on creating new stationery for my photography business. It also meant new Business Card too. Being an independent photographer, I decided to create things on my own. Then I realized that there were shortcomings in my business card design. I am a professional photographer but not a professional graphic designer☺. So, why not ask my friends, clients, fellow photographers, and followers of my work on social media for their inputs? And what followed next was a fabulous creative process and a crowdsourcing exercise, the lessons of which I will remember for a longtime to come.
I used Vistaprint for making my business cards. But, I didn’t like their off-the shelf designs. Hence I designed my own business card on Photoshop using Vistaprint’s psd file template as the bottom layer in my Photoshop design to able to get the correct size and specification they’d print on.
How it all started – Social Media.
I did the right thing by sharing the probable designs of my business Cards on social media (Facebook mainly), and requesting for feedback. I didn’t expect the number of feedbacks that I would eventually receive for it. From my spouse, to some old friends, to former colleagues, to clients, to photographers, and to handful of graphic designers, everyone chipped in with their inputs and suggestions for improving the design of my business card.
To begin with, the photograph and the logo used in this business card were appreciated by almost everyone. The logo for my photography business was designed by Rhea Carvalho, a young graphic designer from Bombay, India (Do get in touch with her if you want some logos designed too).
Later, I found all the issues and shortcomings in my initial design that needed to be worked on. The end users told me that my contact details were not readable with the font that I had used. And some talented creative professionals explained how my original fonts did not complement my logo. And some people suggested how better it would be to reduce/remove the text overlaying the image.
As the day progressed, I was receiving major help and lessons in graphic design. One of my friends, a copywriter, found a set of better fonts to blend with my logo. I picked one (Pistara Regular) from this set after a lot trials. By the end of the day, I received messages from an old friend, a graphic design guru, on how the center alignment of contact details was not the best option for business cards that have horizontal orientation. I was suggested to try out left alignment or a different structure and arrangement of details. There was lot of brainstorming sessions over chat windows and finally a design emerged which I found to be much better than where I started off.
The story of the card.
How the card evolved is captured in the above GIF animation.
My Business card is a dual side printed card. The front side is designed to show one of my photographs and let the user know that the card belongs to a photographer. The reverse side of the card is designed to have all the contact details.
There were 3 main iterations in the design with taking inputs and feedback at each stage. The above looping GIF image begins with showing in chronological order how the front side of the card evolved in three stages followed by how the reverse side of the card evolved in three stages too.
Creative Exercise on Photoshop
Apart from learning good principles in design, this activity also let me explore Adobe Photoshop a lot more. For most of my commissioned photography assignments I use Adobe Lightroom almost 95% percent of the time to post process the images. I use Photoshop very little for my daily work. After switching to Adobe Creative Cloud plan for photography (Lightroom+Photoshop bundle subscription), I have been exploring Photoshop a lot more. So, right from using complex Photoshop features to creating this GIF animation, Photoshop was used extensively for this project 🙂 . A well spent Tuesday, I must say!
Facebook’s loss is Google’s gain
Crowd-sourcing is a great creative exercise. More power to people and social media! Though, the major ideas for this business card design project were discussed over Facebook, unfortunately the platform doesn’t provide native support to upload, and display GIF images. That’s why I decided to write this article to let people visually experience, the evolution of my business card design, through a GIF animation.
Facebook’s loss is Google Plus’s gain. Google+ has long supported display of GIF animations. I have uploaded the GIF on my Google+ profile. Click here to see the GIF on Google+.
Before I end this article, I want to take a moment to name and thank some of the people who offered feedback and help, because of which while I was able to come out with a good business card design for myself. Many thanks to Swapna Pratap Jathan, Kritika Sathish Chandra, Saina Jayapal Sushmita Chatterjee, Adittya gupta, Sreelesh Kumar and Kshitiz Anand (last, but not least). Thank you guys! I owe you one.
Thank you for visiting my website. I am a Bangalore, India based documentary Photographer specializing in Editorial, Wedding and Portrait photography. I use this website to showcase my projects and also for sharing my knowledge on photography though my blog. Join me on Twitter, Google Plus or Facebook, or write to me via this Contact Form link for any assignments or for conversations on photography. To follow my work specific to wedding & portrait photography, do like & follow Embedded Eyes on Facebook.
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