Greeting cards started out as simple slips of papyrus, that were exchanged by both the Egyptians and Chinese as messages of goodwill. As the concept of greeting cards evolved, Europeans began to send them to one another for holidays such as Valentine’s Day and this occurred as early as the 1400’s. Of course, these cards were handmade and expensive so not everyone could afford to send greeting cards for their holiday well-wishes.
Greeting cards really hit the mainstream in the 1850’s, when commercial printing as well as the invention of the postage stamp started to allow people all over the world to send greeting cards to their loved ones. Now, greeting cards are a billion dollar business, with people purchasing and sending cards for holidays including religious celebrations, birthdays, and even just as a simple thank you or gesture of love. The two largest greeting card companies, Hallmark and American Greetings, offer cards that are perfect for any occasion, with themes and illustrations that are great for all tastes.
Of course, you don’t need to buy your greeting cards in a store. Computers and home printers have made it easy to create and print out your own cards at home. Many people have also taken up paper crafts, and have taken to hand making their own greeting cards out of many different materials, with embellishments ranging from ribbons to beads. Some even go as far as to make their own paper, which is a time consuming process but definitely shows your recipient just how much you care. Hand painting and rubber stamping with ink can complete your homemade creation.
Greeting cards have evolved from an item used only by the rich to an everyday tradition. Whether you want to communicate with far-off relatives, or just let your sweetie know how much you love them greeting cards make a great (and inexpensive) way to brighten up someone’s day!
Graphic Creations With Software
A basic understanding of computers is all a person needs to create their own graphics with today’s design software. Even with just small amount of design understanding, people can still use simple design programs to build their own cartoons strips, holiday cards, flyers and invitations. Your business and yourself can save money on special occasions by using one of the several user friendly affordable programs that are out there.
The number one choice for design software by both professionals and amateurs is Adobe PhotoShop. By cropping, recoloring and adding special effects, PhotoShop allows users to change photos anyway they wish. Entirely new pictures can also be created by using special drawing tools, or existing pictures can be modified anyway the user desires. PhotoShop uses a system of layers. By using layers, separate pieces of a picture can be changed while keeping the changes separate. For example, you can change the color on the bottom layer without affecting the color on the top layer. If you wish to draw more than creating full pictures, Adobe Illustrator may be the choice for you.
PhotoShop is a pixel-based program while Adobe Illustrator is vector based. What does this mean your probably asking yourself? When you make a picture in PhotoShop, you must use a certain resolution. A computer screen displays 72 pixels per inch for a clear picture, but when you print a 72 dpi picture, it appears blocky and blurred. If you are making a picture for printing in PhotoShop, you need to use 300 pixels per inch to get a nice, sharp image. Because Illustrator is vector-based, it uses a system of paths rather than pixels. In simple terms, it uses lines rather than colors. This means that everything you create in Illustrator can be enlarged up to any size you wish without ever becoming blurry or grainy. Designers often use Illustrator software to build logos for a variety of advertisements. The same picture or logo drawing can be used on a small business card or enlarged to fill an entire billboard.
For those wishing to create simple greeting cards or party invitations, there is a variety of user friendly software programs made specifically for these purposes. Many offer templates for several print sizes and folding options. For the more experienced user, the software p
rogram Quark is an excellent print layout tool. Adobe InDesign also offers professional quality layout options along with many of the same tools used in Adobe PhotoShop and Illustrator. If you are to use these two programs, you will easily be able to create professional quality materials with InDesign.
There is a wide variety of file types used in graphic software programs. Most have their own native formats that can only be read by the parent programs. PhotoShop files have a .PSD extension, and Illustrator files are AI, making them only accessible by PhotoShop. When you are working with a work in progress, it is a good idea to save files in these formats, as they offer you the greatest flexibility in altering your creation. However, once you have completed your work and are ready to print your materials, you can save them in a variety of ways. Web pictures should saved as JPEGs, GIF or TIFF files. Pictures ready for printing are best saved as EPS files, to preserve color accuracy. If you plan to send graphics via e-mail, PDF offers the greatest flexibility, as most computers have Acrobat Reader, the program needed to read the PDF file type.
No matter what software fits your needs, making digital graphics can be a enjoyable and simple hobby, or even a professional career. It can take some time to get used to the terminology, but once you learn the tools of digital art, you will be on your way to building functional and decorative graphic masterpieces to share with the electronic world.
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Sintilia Miecevole has a great deal of experience in computers and technology. Click on www.fmlasoftware.com to see the huge selection of software and the latest downloads available. Be sure to visit www.fmlasoftware.com for your favorite software tools.
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Brithday invitation, online card maker?
I need a website or something to make a birthday card invitation. I want to be able to upload one of my pictures and be able to put it on the front and on the inside have pictures too. pretty much to be able to design the whole thing myself and decorate it all of this online. Any websites? Thanks