This whole adventure started with a commitment to make some thank you cards for a friend’s business. It’s turned into much more than that with several images created, a new blog started, visions forming and learning a whole new language …of digital image technology and printing.
Once the images were finally complete, I still needed to get them into a format for quality printing and reproductions. That turned out to be more challenging that I realized. After a couple of weeks of trying, and three print runs, I have some finished product.
Here are the three print runs. These were taken quickly with my iphone, but you get a good idea of everything. Which option do you like better?
- The first is from online printer moo.com at 3×5”
- The middle is from my home printer. I made a template in Word and printed on 5×6.5” note cards purchased from Hobby Lobby, a local art & craft store.
- The third is the same template and notecards, but printed at a local FedEx/Kinko center.
Interestingly, most online printers only offer 3×5” notecards. I’m sure there are ones who can print the ~5×7”, but I have not found them yet. That led to some interesting challenges and key differences:.
Size: 3×5’ vs 5×7”. Larger size gives opportunity for border. I think it feels more special and it looks great in a frame. My vision was a border.
Cropping: Because of the smaller size, they had to crop the images by ¼” all the way around., that means all my signatures are cut off. I have to figure out how make the images smaller when I put them in their template. That’s been trickier than I thought and I need more help with this new language of digital photography and image editing.
Words: ‘Thank You’. With my template and larger size, I could add it easily and adjust the image easier. Other online themes and templates were not easy to edit – or if they already had it, it wasn’t quite what I had in mind. Cheri specifically asked to have ‘Thank You’ on the cards.
Paper: They are both nice and good quality. The moo.com ones are strong and they are a good quality card, but the notecards from Hobby Lobby have a slight ‘tooth’ to them and I think they feel a bit richer.
Color: Notice the difference in color for all of them. Different printers print differently. If you saw each of them individually they all work fine, but it’s very noticable when they are side by side.
I’ll definitely use moo.com again. They were easy to use, good paper, best professional look/quality and you can order ‘packs’ of different images. But, I have to figure out the cropping and word issue. I want the images to be ready, fit and work nicely when people download them. They should not have to mess with the sizing…they should be ready to go.
But, whenever I’m printing for myself I’ll use my 5×7″ template. I just like the border – especially on the other images without words, like below. I’ll also continue to look for a printer who can do this.