Making Business Cards

7 Aug

In the scramble to get ready for ICON8, I needed to create a business card. I’ve had a voice nagging me to make some for the last few years, but I could never commit to a design (I’m still struggling with creating a logo for myself).

Well, with less than a week until ICON8, I had to come up with something to give to people. Networking was going to be a big part of the conference.

I’m still unsure of what my personal “brand” is, but I knew these things for sure:

  • My own art should be on the card
  • The card shouldn’t feel too formal
  • The card needs to feel handcrafted/handmade

While looking through my sketchbooks, I came upon this sketch of a bear:


Original bear sketch.

I decided to use him for my card. He seemed a pretty safe subject that wouldn’t be too feminine or too masculine or (hopefully) peg me in some illustration category I didn’t want to be in. That, and he is easy for me to draw, so it wouldn’t take forever to recreate him.



Concept sketch

I made a sketch of the business card design. I thought of having two different designs, but then I realized that with my fast approaching deadline, I wasn’t sure about the logistics of getting two designs printed (and I didn’t have a big budget).



Second concept sketch

Here is a second concept sketch. This one is tighter. Those brownish blotches are actually gold paint. It was at this point that I realized that I wanted to individually color all of the cards and add some gold paint embellishments (apparently, I’m a sadist).



Line art

This is the final, cleaned up line art that I scanned in. I drew him on a page in my sketchbook.



Final design, ready for printing

This is the final design, created using Illustrator. I opted to leave my phone number off the card. I’m not a big phone talker, and I’m readily accessible via e-mail.



Home “proofs” of the card, with some color tests

I printed a few versions of the final design at home, and added color. I wanted to see how the size and proportions of everything worked together right in front of me, instead of trusting what I saw on my computer screen. Turns out, I had to make a few tweaks to the type. Once I figured everything out, I ordered my business cards through Staples. They have a handy dandy same-day printing option!



Finished product, after coloring and adding gold embellishments

After several hours of coloring (I used copic markers) and adding gold acrylic paint, this is the final product! To keep myself from getting super bored with coloring, I did them in batches – some blue bears, some red bears, some green bears, etc.



A closer look

Overall, I was very satisfied with the end product! I think it hit all the points I wanted it to make – has my own art, doesn’t feel too formal due to the organic shapes and lines, and it feels handmade due to the individual nature of the coloring. I handed out some at ICON8, and people responded well to them. I’m definitely pleased! I can’t say that these will be my go-to business cards for the rest of my career, but I can take pride in giving these to people when I network!

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