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Archive for the ‘Branding for Wedding Photographers’ Category

The two most-asked questions I get from email inquiries are what you see in the title of this post. The answers depend on so many things that it’s almost impossible to pin it down. But I want to address these questions because having these cards is a kind of spendy proposition, and it takes more time than most printing, but it can be so worth it because the cards say such good things about you when you are out of earshot.They tell a big story about your talent, your attention to detail, your fabulous aesthetic and hipness quotient. They get more attention and they get more jobs. They are audacious and they are convincing. They are worth it, in other words.

As beautiful Lara Rios said the other day…”Everything goes up and nothing ever goes down.” That is too true. Paper costs have been out of sight the last couple of years. And we use such extra-special papers that it’s even truer for us.

So, what does it cost to get your hands on some of these fabulosity-drenched business cards? Let’s say you already have a logo that you love. Let’s say it is a two color design, which can translate to two ink colors or two foil colors or one of each.

If you get 1000 cards made up with two color runs, printed front and back, on super thick 600 gram Lettra or on even thicker black or colored Museum Mount, it will usually come in around $1100 or $1200. Adding a third color run will add about $225 to $250 for extra dies and printing to that price. Edge painting is additional too.

Yes, I know. It starts around one dollar per card, plus. If you think you would like to save money by getting fewer cards, it is something you need to think hard about because, in printing, it’s always “cheaper by the dozen.” I mean, cutting the quantity in half does NOT result in half the price. This is because the prepress things are in that price no matter if you get one or ten thousand. In the end, getting MORE cards actually saves money in the long run.

Five hundred of the same sort of card will not be $600, but will be more like $800+, so the unit price, in this case, goes up to $1.60 per card. This will make you really think hard about giving your cards away, which defies the whole concept of getting your name out there. So we recommend doing more than less, if you possibly can.

Now, the question of how long it will take: I have done cards in one day, in five days, and I have taken a YEAR to get cards out the door. This usually depends on the customer’s ability to make a decision and we were not working on the card every minute of that time. I promise.

We usually like to say it will take between two and half to four weeks, depending on what is lined up on our press schedule and what processes have to be done to the card, how long it takes to get paper and dies lined up and so forth. If they will be edge painted, that adds one and a half to two weeks to the timeline. Sorry this is so nebulous, but it is the truth. We can really go fast if everything is in place but sometimes it is not so super fast.

If you need a new logo, that too is not easy to pin down. Everything is custom, so we would need to talk about your needs before venturing an estimate. But we do logos and branding and websites here, too. Just ask.

I hope this is helpful and that you will call soon. 707 964 2522 We would love to work with you on your next business cards and stationery, your invitations or announcements, your website or branding.

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Ben and Rebekah Hood of West Palm Beach, Florida named their photography company for the Greek word that means “Beautiful”: KALLIMA. They brought their BEAUTIFUL, edgy logo design to Studio Z Mendocino to transform it into a business card that would further intensify the branding for what they do: Beautiful Wedding, Engagement and LifeStyle photography.

We printed the image and contact information in black ink onto extra-large (a four inch square), extra-thick Cranes Lettra 600 gram paper. Here are their own words about the process and finished product:

It was a three or four-month process…getting everything perfectly designed and laid out, uploaded, ordered…and working with Studio Z Mendocino out of california was so easy. They were so helpful and really aided us in coming up with our final product…our new business card. Studio Z does business cards for some really talented people: Ben Chrisman, fred egan, and Poser Image to name a few. When Erik Clausen of Poser Image referred them to us, we were immediately hooked.

Introducing the new, fabulous business cards for Kallima Photography!

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Jessica Chapman of Brio Media wanted business cards with a very big WoW factor. Here are Jessica’s own words:

I absolutely had to do a quick post about my new business cards from Studio Z Mendocino!  Zida did such a wonderful job guiding me to finalize the design for the most “moxie,” getting them to print, and even getting some edge painting done!  These are certainly not your typical, cheaper business cards for sure, so I will be hoping on a good Return of Investment as I start to WoW people I will pass them out to!

Keeping in line with what we were taught in a recent workshop, I kept it simple, clean and classy by steering away from any temptation to do a card that included images.  Also, for the WoW! effect, I went with a square shape on thicker black museum mount with silver foil stamping and light gray edge painting (much of this thanks to Zida’s recommendation).

Needless to say, going with a classic black with the edge painting makes a statement!  So black that you won’t be able to write on it, and so classic and sturdy that even if you don’t book me, you’ll keep my card around for decoration!

The Wikipedia definition of MOXIE is: “courage, daring, and energy,”

I think this describes Jessica, her beautiful work, and her new business cards equally.

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Robert Wagner, a photographer from New York, had Ross Tanner of Flosites, a fabulous designer and photographer in his own right from Moldova, design his new branding. Robert ordered letterpress business cards from Studio Z Mendocino to arrive quickly for an event he had scheduled. We pulled out all the stops to get them to the east coast in time and they just arrived. Robert sent these gorgeous shots of the results of our fortuitous collaboration.

You can tell they were printed on Cranes 600 gram Lettra. Sumptuosity meets practical Art

meets minimalist aesthetic

meets a little bit of mind bending

equals a tool for business that engages and does its job with daring elan and perfect impression.

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Dallas photographer Lynette Johnson‘s business cards go so far beyond the beyond that it has taken me about a year finally to get them on my blog. They have EVERYTHING. Lynette specializes in photographing Southeast Asian weddings and her designers incorporated an updated Indian theme into her logo, website and blog. I wish I could claim credit for the logo work but I didn’t do it. I did work with her though to get the maximum WoW factor our of her business cards, which we produced here at Studio Z Mendocino. Her colors are a very spring-y green and deep navy blue. In order to do justice to this incredible design it was necessary to go a few extra miles in the production of her business cards.

The stylized, modern paisleys were stamped onto kiwi green paper in a pearlescent foil, then overprinted with her clever, dark blue ink “LynetteJ” logo. Put that aside now and imagine the other side… Well, actually, you don’t have to imagine it — here it is:

The contact information was letterpressed onto white paper. In order to get these two separate pieces of delicious paper to come together as a single business card it was necessary to send it across the continent to our edge painter’s shop back east. There, they sandwiched the two pieces of paper together, with an extra piece of chipboard between, to build them to the extra thickness we wanted, then edge painted them in the same, exact dark blue ink for a little flash/pop/WoW that conveniently disguised the sandwich along the edge.

Do they make some kind of explosive impact? mmm…hmmmm…

Do they represent the incredible and artistically iconoclastic work Lynette does? mmm…hmmm…

mmm…hmmm…you could not ask for anything more.

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Matthew Cotter, an amazing photographer from Southern California’s just got his black, super-thick, foil stamped letterpress business cards AND his complete stationery wardrobe of letterhead, envelopes and buck slips/thank you notes for his E-Ticket Photography business. We printed cards for Matthew and his business partner Patrick Hartson on black Museum Mount for a significant heft in the hand. We foiled his “EP” logo in black, glossy foil, and E-TICKET PHOTOGRAPHY, as well as the back contact information, went on in shimmery silver foil. The cards are the shape of a piece of chewing gum, long rectangles, which is a feature that sets his business cards apart from the crowd.

The black-and-white contrast of these cards against florescent white stationery is breathtaking. We used twenty-eight pound Cranes Crest letterhead paper, which is thicker and snappier than more usual twenty-four pound stock. Again, the logo is in black gloss and the type is in matte black ink. These textural contrasts have a subtle but undeniable impact. The impression that letterpress printing leaves, too, adds one more element to the overall experience.

The final fillip to this zesty package was Buck Slips (shown above), otherwise known as Script Cards. These are 4″ x 9″ note cards that can be used to paperclip notes to scripts (all directors, actors, producers, etc. MUST HAVE THESE) or other things, AND they fit right into the #10 Envelopes so you don’t need a dedicated envelope for your thank you notes. I recommend Script Cards whenever I make business cards for anyone. There is nothing like a hand written thank you note on a scrumptious piece of paper that will impress a client more. We printed their names (each got a clutch of these cards) at the bottom so they can “slash” through the printed name and pen their initials or signature.

The Chicness Factor is as clear as black-and-white. E-Ticket Photography looks great on paper!

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This is why I am in business: I get these incredibly talented clients; I get to work creatively with them on really fun, exciting projects; they come back for reprints and we get to connect all over again, over something even MORE creative and fun. Stephen Dohring is a case in point. A wonderful photographer from Tampa who had us do black Museum Mount business cards with silver foil the first time around. Now he wanted a different look, sort of a black-and-white different, and this is the result. Here in his own words is how he feels about the new cards, with their chic, understated, lightened up beauty:

This is my second investment in my cards with Zida and I am excited to hand them out. My first thick museum mount letterpress foil card was very unique in my area, wedding professionals would say things like “Oh you are giving me a stack” when it was only one card. or they would try and open it. Vendors at events would hear about my card and ask me for one. Of course I want people talking about my photography but when you network you can’t show your images, so giving them something to remember me by is the next best thing.

For my new cards I wanted them a bit more feminine with a softer feel and non-traditional shape.  I love the simplicity, the detail with the painted edge, and how the logo will look soft and elegant and then catch the light and pop with more impact. All of those are elements I like to see in my photography. My new cards are just one part of my branding that can say a lot for me all by themselves.  There is no way they will get lost in a pile of other cards and are unlikely to ever be thrown away.

Thanks Zida!

What more can I add to that? Thank you, Stephen. I absolutely adore how these came out. I think the lighter palette will appeal to brides and their moms even more than the black ones did, although they were also very amazing. These, though, printed on Cranes Lettra 600 gram paper, with gray ink and pearl foil are plainly The Bomb, as we used to say. Elegant, sexy, demure and commanding all at once.

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Mihai Serban is a fabulous photographer from Romania who, through the miracle of the Internet, came across this blog and had Studio Z Mendocino, on the wild northern California coast, make his fantastic business cards: 600 gram, super-luxe Cranes Lettra, black ink, silver foil, deep impression, very good impression.

It was a thrill to ship them off to their new home 6447 miles away. That is SO FAR…

Serban has this tag line: Photographic Influence.

What more can I say?

Here are Serban’s words:

Hi Zida
How are you?
I have started showing my business cards to other people and everyone was impressed.
I hope they are going to bring me alot of business.
Meanwhile, I have pictured one of them for your blog.
Thank you once again.
All the best.
Serban Mihai Popescu.

Here is how the front and back look:


Don’t you love the modern world?

Thank you, Serban, for finding us and for being such a fun client to work with. We all LOVE how they came out and the beautiful, mysterious photo you shot of them. You have to come to California one day and we will have a big party for you, our most far-flung customer ever!

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Newborn, Baby, Child, Maternity, Family photographer Angela Weedon, of Dallas, Texas, received her letterpress business cards from Studio Z Mendocino right before the holidays. She just sent me these beautiful shots of them, which, she says “are a hit!” We love the watery blue edge painting and the darling logo she brought to the project.

They are appealingly fresh, deeply impressed onto Cranes 600 gram white Lettra paper, which is made for letterpress especially, in the same soft aqua blue and medium gray inks.

The edge painting sends them right into the stratosphere for style, beauty and a surprise WoW factor.

This is the way to start the New Year: Branding that follows through visually as well as with the tactile flourish only letterpress printing imparts. Subtly three-dimensional, her new cards perfectly exemplify the artistry, quality and sensitivity with which Angela approaches her work and sweet little clients, and their families. You can see some of her beautiful work at weedonphoto.com

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Kristina Belkina just got her new letterpress business cards and sent me these wonderful photos. They are printed in black ink on Cranes 600 gram Lettra, with a whisp of pale pink pearl foil for the word “photographer.” She told me she can’t stop looking at them!

I’m so happy about them too. That one little spark of pale color changed the whole mood. They are beautiful reminders of the talented Ms. Belkina.

A wonderful pleasure to work with Kristina on these amazing cards!

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