Need Your Input

Posted on April 12, 2014 by Leslie Nicole | 7 Comments

I have a lot of digital vintage postcards in the queue that I want to start adding to the shop, but I've been held back by needing to decide on a few things. Would love your input into what you need.



Currently, I have the postcards cut out from the background, saved as PNG files. I like them this way, and personally love the borders and edges, but it does make my files larger and I'm not seeing others offering them this way.

Questions

Help me determine the best format to offer the digital postcards.

  1. Do you like having the original borders with the slightly shabby corners?
  2. Would you consider having the backgrounds cut out desirable even if it added a slight amount to the price or is a flattened file fine for you?
  3. Size: I scanned these at 600 DPI, so twice as big as the originals. I think this offers the most flexibility. Is that size good for you?
  4. I often retouch out the greeting so the image has more flexibility. Any thoughts?
  5. Are you interested in creating new digital graphics for sale with these? (eg. gift tags, scrapbook items, etc.) If so, would you like the (small) price for the extended license added into the product price or as an add-on?

Anything else?

Thanks so much for your input!

Update

I see from the comments that I need to find a better way to describe a few things. Maybe a few visuals will help.

Why 600 DPI

The reason I scan at 600 DPI is so that you have the option to print the originals at least twice their original size. This is great if you want to design backgrounds such as scrapbook papers, pillows, etc.

Terms

All of my products allow for creating artworks to resell. I also allow for graphics such as photo albums and scrapbook pages to be made for clients as long as the final work is delivered flattened. I don't normally allow for my assets to be used to create derivative graphics such as scrapbook items, gift tags, etc. to sell, but I will start offering some things with this option. I plan on offering extended licenses for items such as vintage ephemera and art brushes. So, postcards will have an extended license option, but a final designed digital paper using a digital postcard would not.

Background Cut Out

I'm finding it difficult to find precise words for this. What I mean is that the scanner background is cut out. Let me show you with a few examples. This shows you how a file would look if you opened it up and copied it onto a background file. I've added a drop shadow so that it's easier to see.

Straight Scanned Image

If I didn't "cut out" the scanned background, this is what your placed image would look like unless you cut it out yourself. The file would come flattened.

Cut Out Image

This is what your image would look like with files that I have "cut out". The file has a transparent background. I do all my postcards like this anyway, so I don't mind doing it, but it does make the file much larger. As I do have to pay for file storage and delivery, I have to consider price for larger files. The difference in size is about 13MB more for each postcard. Not enormous, but it adds up if you add a lot of files.

Flattened and Cropped Files

The other option would be to offer flattened and cropped files. The borders are usually so crooked on postcards, that I would need to crop them completely.

Depends How You Use Them

It really just depends on how you would be using these images if it matters to you. Here is a digital paper I've been working on where I used this image in the design. In this case, the borders didn't matter to me.

I'm inclined to offer files in a way that I feel is the most flexible for people, which for me means larger files (600 DPI) and cut out backgrounds. However, I would have to charge a higher price than other sellers offering flattened files at 300 DPI. Both for the extra time it takes me and the larger files. I need to determine what's more important to people: price or quality and options.

I hope this clarifies things. Please do continue to let me know what you need in products. Sizes, file formats, licensing and prices. It's all about you, so I really appreciate your feedback!

Big hugs, Leslie


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7 Responses

Marie Antoinette Voges
Marie Antoinette Voges

April 18, 2014

Hi Leslie,
I am still a novice and to me your work is absolutely stunning! Recently joined your newsletter and can hardly wait for the next one! Thank you so much for the freebies, etc. Just love your style!

Merci!

Marie Antoinette Voges
South Africa

Leslie Nicole
Leslie Nicole

April 13, 2014

Thank you all for your comments! It helps a lot. I’m also really touched by your really lovely feedback. xx

I see I need to find a more precise vocabulary for “cutting out the background.” What I mean is that I cut out the white background behind the postcard so that if you wanted to say, place the postcard onto a background, the postcard would have the rounded, shabby corners and it’s original borders but you would be able to see the background you placed it on.

As an example – see the small version of the postcard in the image above. It’s a little hard to see as it’s small, but the corners are rounded.

Goodness, that’s hard to explain in words! Maybe I do need to put some more examples!

So to clarify, I’m not cutting out the backgrounds of the postcard IMAGES, but the background of the scanner. :-) I’ll put more images. ;-)

Oh, also – I scan at 600 DPI so that you could enlarge the image to twice it’s original size if you wish. The way that would be done is to just change the DPI to 300 without resampling the image. This would make the image almost fill a 12″ × 12″ digital paper.

Thanks for showing me where I need to find a more precise way to describe this! I may try offering these with different options in the beginning to see which end up selling better.

Please do continue to let me know what works for you. Thanks!

Jenny Lens
Jenny Lens

April 13, 2014

Leslie, I’m on a tight budget and don’t make money from my art. That said:

1. I prefer the original borders with the slightly shabby corners.

2. Backgrounds cut out if you think it detracts from the image. This is a vague question for me because I don’t see samples.

3. 600 dpi is large enough. Most photographers and scrapbookers aren’t creating huge images. Or if they are, they use several in a collage/montage.

4. Retouching the greeting makes it far more marketable. Many don’t have that skill. They buy text overlays and can readily had what is suitable for them (or not).

5. I don’t sell graphics. In the future I might sell my photos as stock art, so I would like to see that extended license pricing. I wonder if we can add that later. I don’t know if I will ever sell digital graphics, but if I do, it’s great to go back and get the proper licensing.

Thanks for all your diligent work. It’s a huge endeavor to rebuild the digital aspect of your business. Hang in there and no apologies for perceived ‘lack of’ doing what we expect. Do what you need and we’ll still be here!

Thanks for all your inspiration work, tutorials and interviews. Now enjoy Spring in France!

jenny in santa monica, ca

Jim
Jim

April 12, 2014

I like them just the way they are.

Viktoria Mullin
Viktoria Mullin

April 12, 2014

Hi Leslie! As I always mention, YOUR product and service are the best on today market of a kind of stuff you sell.
The quality is impressive, tutorials- a great help how to work with your product, and also helps understand why I desperately ) need some of your stuff I have had no idea about before.
I love your samples as well.
Now about your new offer- the postcards. I simply give an answer at each point.
1. YES!!! And for sure. The borders make the postcard with an image on it. It is something very unique and charm.
2. YES!!!! It saves my time and YOU do the precious job cutting them out.
3. YES!!!
4. Would be nice to see Before-After, if that’s possible. But so far as I can see and use, you do a great job
5. YES. I create new digital graphics and alter your product using it for my portrait, or greeting card photography with intention to sale my final product, if someone will buy it. I’d prefer to have an extended license for each product I buy from French Kiss. However, the price still need to be reasonable, otherwise I’ll continue creating my own textures and etc. As I say, the French Kiss product is a great source for me and it saves my time for some kind of routine work. But one more point after the fresh unique ideas and quality of the product, is that I like the prices.
6. I can give a credit to French Kiss, when in a work of mine I use something of French Kiss, so and the link to the French Kiss web site. We can talk about.

lorelei
lorelei

April 12, 2014

1. borders, yes because I can always crop if i don’t want them
2. Wow! Would love to have the backgrounds cut out. Then I could possibly but my own subjects into the backgrounds. Oh, the possibilities!
3. 300 DPI is plenty for printing. My labs don’t like huge files. They request 250-300 DPI
4. Yes, love that you take out the greeting- makes it more adaptable
5. I’d be using these as artistic backgrounds for portraits to sell to my clients. Whatever I would need to pay for the rights to do it legally.
Leslie, I’m so excited about the postcards. I’ve always admired the soft watercolor look of cards from this era and wished there was a way to get this look. So thank you once again for doing what you do that makes my work look so unique. Hugs, Lorelei

Muriel
Muriel

April 12, 2014

1. LOVE the borders, shabbier the better.
2. I don’t have a preference for this. Rely on your artistic judgement.
3. i work mostly in larger formats — 16×20 — some notecards, too.
4. If the greeting adds to the image, I say leave it. If not, again, relying on your artistic call.
5. I say do what rewards you best for your extraordinary work and efforts. I think it is priceless.

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