2 Dec blog post – “As for December, I will be working on the 190 new products for the Zazzle Store to meet the 300 goal for this year of which one is going to be a 2013 calendar with a short story to prepare me for the picture book. In addition, I will also be exploring Dreamstime. All this during Christmas?! Eek.”
The thing I like about blogging is that I can easily refer to what I wrote and review my progress. My friends who read my blog may also ask me how I am doing on item so and so.
I must confess, progress has been tardy. I am still 51 products short of meeting the 300 goal for the year. The picture book calendar idea has been archived cause the storyline needed more work. And I didn’t explore much for Dreamstime beyond setting up an account and uploading 3 images. Ouch!
It is not all downhill. There are positive things too!
I have been brushing up my vector art skills as above. Somehow I have managed to find a way that works for me. First, I will draw a sketch and then I will use shapes like circles, rectangles and lines to fill up parts of the sketch. Lastly, I will adjust the shapes and add the details to make up the final image. I find it much easier to come up with a vector image using these steps instead of starting from scratch with no sketch at all.
Instead of a picture book calendar, I have completed several yearly calendar posters! And I am happy with the outcome.
I have also set up an account with Cafepress and uploaded 8 images to it. Cafepress is similar to Zazzle, that is it is a site where designers can upload their designs to be manufactured on different products. There are some things that I like about Cafepress like the different products it offers compared to Zazzle. It has a more extensive baby series like baby bibs, hats and blankets! How cute is that?!? Especially since mine are doodles, it seems to match such products. I also like how a design is put on a basket of products which gives me an immediate feel of how the design fares.
Unfortunately, I uploaded the 8 images to Cafepress for more than 72 hours and Cafepress has not approved the designs yet. And I note that the royalty rates are fixed at 8% whereas one is free to set the royalty rates for Zazzle and Zazzle’s default is 10%. Currently, I still prefer Zazzle to Cafepress.
And I have learned something useful about Zazzle, something which I should have done since day one. It is better to save the image in png instead of jpeg if you design like me with a focus on a character or item and not so much on the background. In jpeg, I will usually leave the background white or change it to another color to “spice” up the product. If I save the document as a png image with transparency to upload to Zazzle, my viewers can easily change the background color in the customisation mode to their favourite color. Refer to picture below.
Hope the above tip on Zazzle helps anyone starting out on Zazzle.
All in all, it is still a good December where I made some progress! It is after all Christmas and New Year Eve this month so it is cheers all the way to end 2012!