Okay so you have your promo cards, or you’re skipping out on them. That’s fine.
Now it’s on to business cards!
There are several questions you have to ask yourself when designing business cards. Personally, I like business cards more than promo cards simply because of the size. Having all those postcards from other illustrators is nice to line them all up on a cork board for references, but at the end of the day too many postcards just means a bigger paper mass to deal with at the bottom of your bag.
The thing about business cards, the creation:
- WHAT IS YOUR ILLUSTRATION STYLE? I mentioned this with postcards as well, but there are a few elements that can make a style other than your drawing or painting. Your compositions can be just as important to style as the drawing. Do you want just one spot illustration of a funny character? Do you want some environment in there? Do you tend to add your font into the illustration or keep it separate? Do you illustrate your own font? And…
- ROUNDED OR SQUARE CORNERS? Yes, the physical appearance of the card is also part of your style. This year I want to pay more for rounded corners as rounded corners give a softer, “bouncier” characteristic that matches the shapes of my drawing style. You can also have rectangle or square cards. And…
- GLOSS OR MATTE? Matte is what I usually go with because gloss doesn’t work with my illustrations. Matte has that soft look that also works with rounded corners. If you think your illustrations would work best in gloss, like I can imagine a space scene looking pretty rad with a gloss layer, then go with gloss.
- NO MATTER YOUR STYLE, KEEP IT SIMPLE. A business card image is typically 3.5 x 2 inches so don’t add too much. Your information might get lost or someone is like my dad who can’t see details up close won’t be able to know whats going on haha. I kind of did this with last years business cards…
- WHAT’S ON THE BACK? Again, I would keep it simple. Last year I had a cute image on the back but this year I only have my illustrated font and type in color. This is the back of last years..
The thing about business cards, the distribution:
- WHO SHOULD YOU GIVE YOUR CARDS TO? Anyone and everyone! That’s the beauty of business cards, they fit in your wallet. You can just pull out the cards whenever you get a chance. Most likely you’ll be stacking up the cards next to your portfolio at a conference, but I’ve given my card while having small conversations with random strangers waiting in line at retail stores. I’ve given my cards to the women at the library whenever they give me that look while I go straight to the children’s book section and take a stack of picture books to the counter.
- SHOULD YOU HAVE A LOGO? I would say yes. Having a logo makes you recognizable if you continue giving out different business cards and promo cards with it on there. I’d say a logo is good business. I have my bee for b.handi this year.
- WHAT INFORMATION SHOULD YOU HAVE ON THE BACK? Instagram, Facebook, twitter, website, email. Everything you want, just make it neat and easy to read.
- And last, the friendly reminder to HAVE A CRITIQUE GROUP. Oh, and make sure whatever image you have on your business card matches the genre you’re going for of course.
And that’s all! I hope I’m more prepared for the conference this year. I like my business card much better this time around.