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Posts Tagged ‘Silver Foil on Black Business Cards’

Carsten Mol Photography Business Cards

Carsten Mol Photography Business Cards

Danish photographer Carsten Mol found Studio Z Mendocino online and contacted me about a year ago. He wanted to have some really special business cards, and, of course, that is what we do here. We instantly felt a rapport, even though separated by many miles and much water and emailed enthusiastically about what he had in mind, ideas I had for the design and materials, colors, possibilities and his dreams. It was sort of like meeting an old friend I didn’t know yet. Carsten was rebranding and got back to me after several months when his website was completed, as he promised he would.

Edge painting put the icing on the cake

Edge painting put the icing on the cake

His website was the inspiration for the design we finally landed on. go see: Carsten’s website

The backs are equally yummy

The backs are equally yummy

When the cards arrived to Denmark, this is how Carsten started his blog post about them: “Today I got my brand new Business card! And what can I say more than, I just love them!!!! They are small pieces of art.” The nice things he said about working with me almost made me cry! He immediately sent me these wonderful shots he took of them and I feel proud to post them here today.

The first cards we have done for someone in Denmark!

The first cards we have done for someone in Denmark!

I often say, “I love the modern world!” and, really, I mean it. Never before have we been able to do business in this way, to connect with like-minded people in any corner of the world and relate to each other, feel into others’ lives in this marvelous way, affect each other and even affect each others’ friends and colleagues and, of course, clients, most importantly. It really seems like some sort of miracle, a miracle we take for granted every day, that allows unprecedented communication and relationship to occur regardless of geographical location.

Thank you, Carsten, for reaching across the ocean from Scandinavia to the USA, to California, to Mendocino County, to my little office at Studio Z Mendocino, and to my heart. It’s a beautiful miracle to know you.

 

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ProTalent Thick Black Business cards with three foils and green edge painting

ProTalent Thick Black Business cards with three foils and green edge painting

ProTalent Sports Group’s Sean Bertrand came to Studio Z Mendocino almost a year ago, inquiring about our deluxe, super-thick black business cards. Christopher and Sean work with big league baseball teams internationally, matchmaking players and teams, and they wanted a card that really stood out from the pack. Sean, having seen someone’s card we did knew down to his knees that we were the right printers to do their cards. There was, however, a small snafu.

Chris's business card backs

Chris’s business card backs

They had had a designer working on the cards but somehow something had fallen between the cracks and the design firm was no longer in business. They had a sort of half-done idea but needed it completed and made into a file I could use as a letterpress printer. No Problem! I redid the design using some of the original elements (the shields), changing up the typeface, and laying out the backs. All of this took some negotiating and time, but, by and by, we did arrive at THE design everyone agreed was IT.

Thinner black paper, edge painted

Thinner black paper, edge painted

Then, Sean did not want the super-super thick cards we are used to doing. He wanted cards that were about half as thick as our Museum Mount paper. So, a quest ensued, which also took a bit of doing but was very instructive for me and allowed me to find a thinner paper (also less expensive) that we like to work with. Eventually we did find a thickness and quality that everyone agreed was IT. To make the edge painting really do what it’s intended to do, paper needs to have some heft so the edges are not lost. This paper lets the edge painting shine without taking up major space in pocket or wallet (or chewing tobacco pouch).

Gloss foil, silver foil and grass-green foil

Gloss foil shield background, silver foil and grass-green foil

In the final analysis, these amazing business cards were worth the time and challenges that brought them into existence. Their impact cannot be measured nor can it be denied. They are certifiably Awesome, with three gleaming foils and green edges that evoke baseball fields and dreams, substantial paper with just the right heft, deep impression, and a moxie-filled attitude.

Sean's back

Sean’s back

Thanks, Sean, for coming to Studio Z and for being an awesome player agent. The whole process was made fun by working with you on this project that came out so very beautifully.

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A stunning business card carries the day when networking in Hong Kong, or anywhere

A stunning business card carries the day when networking in Hong Kong, or anywhere

 

The backs of the cards are as gorgeous as the fronts. Almost!

The backs of the cards are as gorgeous as the fronts. Almost!

Nami Lee, CEO and Founder of Tokyo Luxe, recently contacted me about doing business cards for her Luxury Concierge Services in Japan. She came with most of her logo completed — the design just needed a little fine tuning to adapt it for letterpress techniques. Because Nami wanted something that would stop traffic, we decided to print them on our super-thickest black museum mount paper with three foils: black gloss foil for the “T”, metallic silver foil and metallic gold foil. Then, after some consideration, I’m happy to report that Nami decided to go for the boldness of salmon colored edge painting.

Closeup of edge painting

Closeup of edge painting

 

When the cards were finally delivered to her in Tokyo, Nami immediately filled up her purse with them and flew out to network in Hong Kong. She emailed me that she has never had such reactions to a business card before. She says she is so happy we met each other online…one more miracle of modern life…she found this blog, called me, and the rest is history.

 

Tokyo Luxe black business cards with three gleaming foil colors on super-thick black paper
Tokyo Luxe black business cards with three gleaming foil colors on super-thick black paper

The finished cards have a vibration of something like jewelry, something at once timeless, unique, and somehow managing to seem contemporary yet also classic. Incredibly thick, luxurious paper foil stamped in gleaming metals, and flicked with the understated-but-ever-so-THERE salmon color along the edges are a force of marketing to be reckoned with. You will not be forgotten when you leave behind something this amazing and beautiful.

This is the photo Nami sent to me from Hong Kong:

Photo Nami took when her business cards came
Photo Nami took when her business cards were delivered to her in Tokyo

 

 

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This is the business card we produced for New York City event company, Platinum Soirees. Nacole Powers designed the logo herself and wanted the major wow factor of a matte black, ultra-thick card with platinum and royal blue foils. I had adapt here existing logo into a two-color image that would work for letterpress. As you probably know, not every design is letterpress-friendly. The original design was not specifically created for this techniques; drop shadows had been applied to make it look like letterpress (kind of). Instead, Nacole got the real thing and no drop shadows were needed. The deep impression of letterpress achieves a little shadow around each image and letter — very beautiful, don’t you think? The registration of the two foils was extremely minute and required a great deal of skill to print properly.

The outcome, as you can see, is nothing short of spectacular. The message is clear, from the name of the company itself, to the execution of the intricate design, choice of paper and colors, the shape and the treatment: this is luxury, this is beauty, this is attention to minute detail and it adds up to a big communication.

 

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Mike Tseng‘s fabulous new black-on-black business cards take “basic black” to a whole new level. Super-thick black museum mount in a slim rectanglular shape provides the foundation for the black gloss foil-stamped swirling background pattern designed by Flosites, and matte charcoal ink for his name. Though everything is subtle, it is also somehow extravagant and ravishing.

Mike says, “Thanks again for the cards, people are blown away when I give it to them!” Well, ahem, I told you that would happen, Mike. Blown away is always the reaction we go for. We love that.

Perfectly yummy…

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Corine Tran of Studio Tran, in Louisiana, called me before Christmas with a vision and a hope to get some awesome business cards made up for her photography business. After a couple of emails she casually mentioned, “I can’t believe you’re in Fort Bragg.” Mystified, I asked her why that was amazing to her — had she been to Fort Bragg?? — and she answered that she’d lived and gone to high school here! The Small-World connection and her warm personality made this one of those jobs that seems a little bit magical the whole way through. Right off the bat, she won me over completely be sending us a King Cake — the most scrumptious, sweet, way-too-tempting Louisiana Mardi Gras confection we ever tasted. OMG is all I can say. Also, YUM. I never even heard of a King Cake before and could not believe she did that!

Corine had to be veeerrrrry patient with us because, as some of you know, we were in the throes of moving out of our shop after twenty-seven years (more on this later, I promise), which took the better part of two months, but the upshot for the Transes was that it took a ridiculously long time to get the cards done despite the cake. Honest, we are not usually like this, but that move was taxing even our most angelic customers!!! Luckily, she was not in a huge hurry. We did send a few to her after they were printed but before they got the final embellishment, hot pink edge painting, so Corine and Beebe could attend a convention with some cards in hand (which, we hear, went over big anyway).

Her husband Beebe had already designed the truly inspired and beautiful “BC”monogram for their logo, and the vector files for the cards were all ready to go. All it needed was what Studio Z Mendocino does so well: letterpressing colored foils onto super-thick black Museum Mount paper and turning a lovely dream into an even lovelier reality.

The hot pink edge painting finished them off in the spectacular way that that one small detail can. The cards are completely off the charts in terms of beauty, charm, WoW factor and amazingness. Corine says, “We absolutely love the business cards. They are everything I wanted and had in my mind when I first set out to find someone who could make this happen! Thank you Thank you Thank you!  Everyone just ooohhs and ahhhs over them and asks where we got them.”

It was, may I say, my very great pleasure to work with Corine and Beebe and to produce these amazing little pieces of art. I am sure that anyone who works with them will feel that same way. I know the cards will bring you new and exciting clients. They are kind of magical like that.

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Enchanting Planting, a garden and landscape design company in Orinda, California, has been my customer for decades now. I designed their logo back in the 1980s and we all have really loved it through numerous reprintings. Recently they came to me for a reprint of their business cards and also needed new stationery and envelopes too.

Prepared to reprint with minimal changes — adding the URL and email address were all they wanted added — I sent some new paper samples down to them because their old paper had been discontinued from the mill. While I was at it I threw in a few other samples of business cards and other work we have been doing at the shop, just to let them in on what we have been up to recently, which, if you follow this blog, you know has been pretty thrilling.

Well, imagine my surprise when they called back completely gaga over everything, especially the very thick black cards with foil stamping. They didn’t even know anything like that existed in the world. WELL! You have to know how I love to bite into something like this. A complete updating of their look was in order all of a sudden, yet they did still lovethe motifs I had used initially, which you can see below.

This is, you know, a conversation. To redesign or design from scratch a new logo and branding requires some introspection…What do you love? What do you want to ditch? What’s different about what you are doing now as opposed to what you used to do when the first logo was created. What is the mood you want to set up with your cards? Who are your customers now? What are they like? What should the color palette be? Etc., etc….These questions guide the direction of the logo design process.

We chose to keep the happy image of the flower basket, but to put it on in a gleaming apple green foil. We chose to use thick, thick Museum Mount black paper instead of the former cream colored, much thinner stock, and to lose the jungle patterned border. I redesigned their logotype, too, using a more modern font. This, and the contact information, we stamped on in gold metallic foil. And I put the phone number is a swoopy, romantic type that calls to mind the movement and grace of leaves in a breezy garden. Then, the coup d’gras — EDGE PAINTING in the same apple green. Look:

It’s quite clear that there is NO garden design company in the world with cards that look anything like these. As distinctive and gorgeous as the work Enchanting Planting does all over the Bay Area, they now have business cards that set the stage for what they stand for and what they create in people’s homes and yards.

It’s so much fun to work with my clients, many of whom have been with me since I opened in 1984, and who feel like old friends to me. I’m always so happy to hear from them again and again over the years. They are clients AND friends. Makes my life very grand. Knowing they are proudly passing out the work we have done for them here at Studio Z Mendocino and helping them to get their names out in the most elegant, edgy, beautiful way…why does that give me such a thrill? But really, it does. I love them and I love the work we get to do for them, and they are excited and proud of their printed things…it’s such an interesting, engaging, creative relationship. How much better could it possibly get than this?

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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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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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I have been wanting to show you the business cards we did for photographer Ellen Anon for a while now. There is just no way to describe them or even to photograph them, though, that can really impart the amazingness of these beautiful objects, although Ellen’s photo above comes close. What doesn’t show is the way the color pops off and morphs as the angle of the card changes in relationship to light. This is because … well, let me start from the beginning:

Ellen called me one day out of the blue and wanted me to do some business cards for her. She is an award winning photographer who travels the world incessantly and takes the most staggeringly gorgeous photographs of the natural world and had stumbled onto my blog. I felt like I had known her all my life after the first phone call. We just clicked. It turns out Ellen is also the author of six books about photography and Photoshop, gives workshops all over the place and is interviewed for her expertise in these subjects.

We dug into the project immediately and it was the most fantastic collaboration. She started sending photographes to me and I was looking at them with a graphic designer’s eye for line, color, something that would give me that physical hit I get when I just know something is right. With letterpress printing, you really can’t have a four color image, at least not one you would be happy to look at. Photography and Letterpress Printing are two art forms that are in different galactic systems in terms of how color is laid down and of course many other factors, although there are many intersections, too, in the way we approach our crafts and how we perceive things.

Letterpress printing, particularly, with its deep impression into soft, non-shiny paper seems at odds with how a photograph can be interpreted. But that is the charge we set for ourselves. I wanted to incorporate one of her images into the design and logo, but it was going to have to be done in some very unusual way. I had recently finished Elizabeth Perkins’s business card that used a photograph of a grand stairway in England, turning it into a negative and printing that in white ink onto black paper. It was a very successful experiment and I thought I could use that experience to advantage for Ellen’s project.

Looking through her galleries was a great pleasure and of course an equally big puzzle. We looked at many images from all over the world together… wildly colored agricultural steppes in China, drama-queen trees, a crazy geyser in Nevada…all mind boggling, but when she sent me a picture of a river in Iceland that looked like a big tree branch, I just stopped everything.

This was IT.

So, how to turn a full color photo into something I could make into a letterpress image?

Yes…quite a question. Ellen went to work in Photoshop and so did I. We were burning up the airwaves with various iterations, nixing and mixing, then suddenly, there was this duotone…I said, what would happen if we turned each of the two layers into its own foil die? Then there was a moment when inspiration went out of control and I said, OK, the foils are going to be PEWTER/SILVERY and HOLOGRAPHIC TURQUOISE that turns into every shade of blue in the spectrum. That was also IT. We decided to put this glowing idea on black, super-thick Museum Mount paper for even more dramatic impact.

There were a lot of experiments that went back and forth to Pennsylvania — holographic blue with pewter, pewter and copper and even copper and holographic foil. They were ALL gorgeous! Everybody concurred. They were a big hit.

Because Ellen was hanging out of a plane high above an Icelandic landscape, trying to keep her camera from blasting out of her hands in the intense wind in order to take this shot, the many trials and errors, extra Skyping, and much discussing of ins and outs about the designing and printing of this image seems like almost, ALMOST, a piece of cake. Can you imagine? She is my hero.

Above, you see the original photograph and below, what we did with it to make it into her new logo and business card. Sheesh.

It was a very exciting and fulfilling project that got me and Ellen into the Friend Zone. There were a few doubts about whether the whole crazy idea would even work, as I conferred with our fabulous printer Rhea…the tension mounted and then…it did work and it is gorgeous.

We are all kind of gaga about the cards and the incredibly intense experience of working together toward such a satisfying ending. This is something, I am pretty sure, that has never been done before in the world. How cool is that?

Please go see Ellens work at ellenanon.com. Totally worth the trip.

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