Monday

Gift for a Bridesmaid or Maid of Honour

A Gift for a Bridesmaid is something that many couple like to present after a wedding. It is extra special if it can be tailored to reflect the special day, and even more so if it includes the name of the Bridesmaid or Maid of Honour.

I designed a Commemorative Mug that allows for the monogram initial, the name of the recipient, the role undertaken, the date of the ceremony, and also the details of marriage being celebrated.





Bridesmaid gift side view

You can see this Bridesmaid Gift Mug in my store HERE.

I have other designs for Bridesmaids, including this one pictured below. Or I can design one for you by request.



Wednesday

Palm Tree Design Cushions Now in my Etsy Store

Here are a few of my cushions that are over in my Etsy Store.

These shown here are the 14" size. They are also available in the large size as well as lumbar cushions.

Take a look...


via GIPHY

Four Lollipop Man Cartoons as an Animated Gif...

I thought I would experiment with making an animated gif. I used Giphy.

What do you think?

via GIPHY

Tuesday

One-Off Business Gifts Make Good Commercial Sense...

Low cost promotional mugs for businesses large and small.

In the past, when you wanted to create business gift items, you would have to order a large number to make the exercise worthwhile. For example, if you wanted to to have a mug with your company image and relevant contact details, to give out as a promotional item, you would have had to order a quantity of 1000 at least, to bring the cost per unit down to an acceptable level.

How things have changed, and, for small companies, for the better. Now, a business with limited funds can create a one-off product, or order just a few, knowing that they can revisit the product to buy more in the future as and when needed.

Imagine a small building company that has been hired to build a new house, or maybe just an extension to an existing property for a customer, and he wants to let that client have a small but permanent token of appreciation. One answer could be to present the customer with a coffee mug with the business name and contact information (like the example below).



 The cost for this bespoke item? Less than $20... Surely a good low cost investment which any customer will appreciate.


Business Mugs
Business Mugs


Related Article: How Business T-Shirts can help you make a good impression and at the same time promote your company >>

Sunday

Keeping Up-To-Date With Your Zazzle Stats

One very useful feature that Zazzle offers to anyone using the platform to create and sell items, is being able to analyse how well a product is doing. Every item you have available for sale has a list of stats beneath it that keep you informed. 

Take a look at this example.

Recipe book has a cartoon cover showing a cook up a stepladder icing a wedding cake.


More Recipe Book Designs >>
The product is a Notebook that I have adapted and designed a cover for aimed at cooks. It is now a Recipe Book, and the recipient will have their own name on the cover. I have already specified a recipe book page style inside as the default for any purchasers, although they have the option to pick other page styles such as ruled lines.

The information that Zazzle gives me when I view the product reminds me of the date when I created the item, the last time it was purchased, and how long it's been since it was last viewed.

It also lets me see how many orders have been taken, and the number of items that have been sold since its creation. What's the difference? Well, as an example, I recently had an order for twenty-five key rings. It was 1 order, and 25 items were sold in that purchase. You can therefore see how the stats can be so different, and why they are shown as separate figures.

TIP: If one of the products you have for sale on Zazzle isn't selling, or isn't even getting many views, you may need to improve the description you've written for it, and also its tags (the keywords you've given the item to help buyers find it when searching).

If you are looking for more Recipe Book Designs, you can find them here...

You can see my Zazzle Store here...

Tuesday

Designing Shoes that are Quite Unique...

Inspiration from Palm Trees

Some years ago, on one of my earliest visits to the Philippines, I spent an hour or so taking photographs of some towering palm trees that were alongside a beach in Puerto Princesa, Palawan. I remember that they looked quite magnificent against the cloudless blue backdrop of sky.

Fast forward a couple of years, and I was experimenting with the photos, making posterised effects, and then progressing to trying various colour combinations.

It was around this time that I was getting involved with creating designs for Zazzle. I had a hunch that the colourful palm tree designs I had made would look effective on the shoes. I got to work and started adding my images to the shoe elements - left side, right side, rear, tongue, ensuring that the left and right shoe mirrored each other. Once the shoe looked good, I made it available for sale from my online store.

So there it was - a shoe with my design, totally unique. Something that one would not find available in any shopping mall!
Shoes with pattern of palm trees in blue and orange
High Backed Shoes in Blue and Orange

I then set about adding the other colour combinations to my collection, as well as additional footwear types, increasing the choice available, but keeping the overall theme.

Zazzle does something quite brilliantly. When they know you have a product with the same basic design, but in a number of different colour-ways, they indicate that alongside, and the colours link to the variations. For example, here's what you will see on the product page I linked to above:

Indication of variety of colours available

Here are a few examples of the shoes I have so far designed...

Shoes with black and white pattered of palm trees
Design in Black & White
Shoes in a blue and green palm tree pattern
Palm Tree Design in Posterised Effect of Greens and Blues
Red and yellow shoes with a pattern of palm tree leaves
Shoes with Red and Yellow Pattern
Designing for shoes would have been farthest from my mind while on that deserted Philippines beach taking my photographs. However I am glad that those pictures eventually gave me the inspiration to create the colourful patterns that you see now. You can view the full range of shoes in my Zazzle collection...

Monday

Rubber Stamp for Crafters, and Homemade Gift Makers...

Promoting Your Crafts Business


Designed to last a lifetime, this large 5" x 4" rubber stamp is for small crafting businesses. The rubber stamp effect, once printed, is sure to complement the sale of hand made items, especially if the message is stamped onto paper that has a nice character to it.

So, if you're in the business of selling handmade or artisan craft products, this rubber stamp could be the finishing touch, once you've personalised it with your own wording of course!

Here's an idea of how the stamp looks.
Rubber stamp that would suit makers of crafts and handmade items.
View This Rubber Stamp in my Zazzle Store
And here's the message that the above example would create.
Rubber stamp that would suit makers of crafts and handmade items.


Rubber Stamp Variations


Rubber stamps can be made in smaller sizes, and if you'd like me to create one for you, let me know. I'll be happy to help.



You can sign up with Zazzle and start making money from your own designs and creations by clicking the banner below...
Shop & Create on Zazzle

See more of my cartoons at www.nigelsutherland.co.uk

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Yoga Mats with Tropical Palm Tree Designs

Yoga Mats with palm tree designs and in a selection of different colours.
Yoga Mats with Palm Tree Designs
Several years ago, whilst in Palawan, Philippines, I took some photos of lofty palm trees against a cloudless blue sky.
I really liked the photographs, especially when I started to play around with them, creating what we graphic designers used to call "line drop-out" effects (giving the images a posterised style, at the most extreme almost like a silhouette).

Altering the Colours with Imaging Software

Having posterised the images, I was able to create a number of different colour versions using Photoshop. The colour would be changed by converting to a monotone, and then specifying what that colour was. I could also add a background colour. I created a series of images, some with backgrounds, and some without, having just a plain white background.

Adding the Images to Yoga Mats

I had created these images as large file sizes, so they would replicate easily on some of the bigger items that I would be utilising on Zazzle. One of the items I felt appropriate was the Yoga Mat. In fact I created a collection of designs, some of which included the option to personalise with a name.
Palm trees posterised effect on a yoga mat. Green and white. Personalised with the owner's name.
Yoga Mat in Green and White, with Owner's Name

Yoga Mats with Variations in Colour

I used the different colour versions of my palm trees image to create a range of Yoga Mats. Here are several more examples.
Yoga Mat in Black and White
Yoga Mat with Palm Trees design in red and yellow
Yoga Mat in Red and Yellow, with Name in White

I also created a version of the posterised photograph with a greater number of colours, although still limited. I thought this one looked quite effective. What do you think?
Posterised Yoga Mat in Blues and Greens

The Yoga Mat Collection

There are further colour options that I have designed. You can see these in the Yoga Mat Collection in my Typically Tropical Zazzle Shop. Here is a link to the full Yoga Mat collection.

You can sign up with Zazzle and start making money from your own designs and creations by clicking the banner below...
Shop & Create on Zazzle

See more of my cartoons at www.nigelsutherland.co.uk

If you liked my post, please share via the buttons below. Thanks!

Saturday

How's My Driving?

It's been a few years now since vehicles started appearing with the wording "How's my Driving?" added to their rear ends. Usually this would be on business vehicles such as vans and lorries. No doubt company bosses felt this would be a good way to ensure that employees took care over the way they drove when out on their travels.

It prompted me to draw two cartoons, both of which have produced nice feedback. Here's the first...
The other example has a golf theme. I decided to promote this to golf enthusiasts, and managed to sell quite a few, on greetings cards etc. The picture shows the cartoon on a car air freshener.


It just shows that the stimulus for cartoon ideas can come from practically anything!


You can sign up with Zazzle and start making money from your own designs and creations by clicking the banner below...
Shop & Create on Zazzle

See more of my cartoons at www.nigelsutherland.co.uk

If you liked my post, please share via the buttons below. Thanks!

Friday

My Collection of 20 Lollipop Man (and Lady) Cartoons...

In a previous article I promised to write a follow-up post to show off my Lollipop Man cartoons. Well here they are!

Collection of Lollipop Crossing Patrol Cartoons

Lollipop man asleep in bed with his lollipop

Lollipop men playing tennis across a busy road


Lollipop man helps lift a manhole cover


Lollipop man is fishing

Lollipop man is on a beach in a surreal illustration

Lollipop man and woman singing karaoke in a bar

Lollipop man is in a boat in floods, and is using his lollipop as a paddle

Lollipop man is gardening

Lollipop man is looking at a poster in the window of a dating agency

Lollipop man on a bus with woman going on a date

Lollipop man uses lollipop as an umbrella

Lollipop man gets married

Lollipop man controls school children at the road crossing


Lollipop Man Helps Retrieve a Ball

Lollipop man competes in a pancake race

Lollipop man balancing lollipop on his chin

Lollipop man cooks breakfast

Lollipop man enjoys a pizza

Lollipop man plays snooker


Update: I have now created a large poster 28"x20" featuring 16 of the Lollipop Man cartoons! If you'd like one, order directly here... View & Purchase 


Lollipop Man Poster

I hope the Lollipop Man cartoons made you smile. If they did, please share...

Lollipop Men T-Shirts & Other Items...

School Crossing Patrol - The Lollipop Men
School Crossing Patrol - The Lollipop Men

You can sign up with Zazzle and start making money from your own designs and creations by clicking the banner below...
Shop & Create on Zazzle

See more of my cartoons at www.nigelsutherland.co.uk

If you liked my post, please share via the buttons below. Thanks!