I am always looking for different ways to do things, this week I was exploring how I can reprint or create a new WhiteFire Comics card set. I ended up finding a cheap way to do this by using Vistaprint and a bit of elbow grease on a paper trimmer. In a nutshell, what a discovered was that Vistaprint has an oversized postcard that can be print on thicker stock and on these oversized postcards you can fit 4-up standard collector cards(2.5x 3.5 inches).
Here is a breakdown of the process…
- Create your cards and art in a layout software, I use CorelDRAW Graphics Suite X7. Keeping print bleed in mind. Link to what bleed is: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bleed_(printing)
- Layout your cards to the Vistaprint oversized postcard size of Width 2135×1535 that includes the bleed. 4-up see the graphic. You will need a back and front graphic/page.
- Go through the Vistaprint process and make sure to upgrade to the paper stock.
- Upgrading the paper stock will make the card thicker and give it a more professional feel.
- You can make the back greyscale if you wish to save money.
- Link to Vistaprint postcard page: http://www.vistaprint.ca/postcards.aspx?txi=17055&xnid=TopNav_Postcards+(Clone)+(linked+item)_Marketing+Materials&xnav=TopNav
- Once you receive the order you cut the postcards into four typical trade cards. In my case, I used a paper trimmer I bought at Staples years ago.
- BLAM! Now you can make your own card sets and print low numbers or high numbers of sets as long as you don’t mind doing some cuttings.
Why a card set?
- The profit margin is way higher than a comic book.
- An alternative way to introduce my characters to people.
- It appeals to a different market of collectors.
- I was using paid for art or leveraging my own art.
- Vistaprint has 40%+ off sales via email all the time.
- Using Vistaprint will allow you to print small runs of sets.
- It helps build your portfolio of products.
Hey, what about packaging the set?
In researching this I ended up buying a hinged card case and printing a cover and back card for the set. A picture of the card set packaged is at the end of the post. Why not a standard foil packaging? There are companies out there that will do a full card set for you, foil package and all but you need to do a large number of sets and you will easily spend 3000 to 6000 dollars(they eat your profit and force you to do large numbers of sets). The case I used cost like .35 cents each, displays the cards long term and completes a budget production of a card set.