30 Replies Latest reply: Jan 2, 2009 12:34 PM by Neil_Keller RSS

    Font Type and Size for a standard business card?

    Community Member
      Hi there,

      I wonder if anyone can comment on the size of a font you use for a business card and the font?

      I know this can depend on the font... But i have been reading that for the address it should be around 7 point and the name of the person should be one point up .. in this case 8 point.

      What about the company name, i presume 10 point?

      Can anyone recommend what is the best font / types of fonts to use for business cards, again i know this can depend.

      I was thinking along these lines, that serif fonts are great for documents but sans-serif would be better for a modern business card because it is missing the serif.

      Futura, verdana, optima and century gothic - anything else?

      You trying to get a feel for what is good to get me started

      If anyone can comment, i would be really grateful.

      Thanks
        • 1. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
          Neil_Keller Community Member
          Ian,

          A business card has to communicate clearly and unabiguously. Otherwise what's the point? And not everyone has 20/20 vision.

          So, in general, I'd be very cautious about any information smaller than about 8 pt with typical high x-height fonts. 7 pt? No, not unless you want something that may be pretty, but largely unusable. Phone and fax numbers, email addresses and company URLs are hard enough to decipher clearly in larger point sizes. On the other hand, for most cards, 11-12 point generally looks too large. (I generally use 8-9 point for the bulk of information on cards.)

          I also would not be mixing a lot of fonts or type size for a business card. Keep it simple. Maybe one size for the company name or person's name, and a point size or two down for the other info. That's two sizes, maximum. Maybe bold for the company and person names. Watch your logo size as well. White space or unadorned negative space is important in creating a professional looking, respectable, inviting card.

          Nothing wrong with serif fonts as long as they are not used too small and you choose wisely. And forget Verdana. It was designed for and is optimized for screen and Web use and there are certainly more interesting fonts to choose from.

          Optima is OK, but to my eyes a bit dated. It had its heyday a several decades ago, so it would have to fit the persona of the company.
          >Can anyone recommend what is the best font / types of fonts to use for business cards, again i know this can depend.

          There is no such thing. Which brings me to the next and most critical point...too many new (and not-so-new) designers fall into the trap of thinking of business cards as an end to a means, instead of the other way around.

          A business card (and logo) should never be designed in a vacuum. This should be a part of a well-considered corporate identification program, that includes other stationery items, and possibly signage, advertising, Website, packaging, etc., etc.-- however the mark and fonts might ever conceivably be used.

          Choice of color and stock should work harmoniously as part of the overall design choices, and are as important as determining factors as typeface choices (yes, you should be exploring different paper choices for weight, grade, finish, and "hand", and suitable colors etc.).

          And it doesn't matter whether you are designing for a Fortune 500 company, or the pizza shop on the corner -- although different in scale, the basic process is the same.

          My point is, that WE cannot choose a font for you, any more than we could choose a good logo or colors without knowing some background. YOU are the one who understands (or should understand) the business and persona of the business you are designing this for and choose appropriately. That's why there are literally tens of thousands of typefaces to consider and choose from. YOU are the designer and it is your job to research, digest, and analyse all factors I've discussed beyond fonts before putting pen to paper (or mouse to screen).

          So perhaps if you can give us some general information about the company and industry, and how the company perceives itself, and what, kind of competition there is, we can offer some ideas.

          Neil
          • 2. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
            Neil_Keller Community Member
            Ian,

            A business card has to communicate clearly and unabiguously. Otherwise what's the point? And not everyone has 20/20 vision.

            So, in general, I'd be very cautious about any information smaller than about 8 pt with typical high x-height fonts. 7 pt? No, not unless you want something that may be pretty, but largely unusable. Phone and fax numbers, email addresses and company URLs are hard enough to decipher clearly in larger point sizes. On the other hand, for most cards, 11-12 point generally looks too large. (I generally use 8-9 point for the bulk of information on cards.)

            I also would not be mixing a lot of fonts or type size for a business card. Keep it simple. Maybe one size for the company name or person's name, and a point size or two down for the other info. That's two sizes, maximum. Maybe bold for the company and person names. Watch your logo size as well. White space or unadorned negative space is important in creating a professional looking, respectable, inviting card.

            Nothing wrong with serif fonts as long as they are not used too small and you choose wisely. And forget Verdana. It was designed for and is optimized for screen and Web use and there are certainly more interesting fonts to choose from.

            Optima is OK, but to my eyes a bit dated. It had its heyday a several decades ago, so it would have to fit the persona of the company.
            >Can anyone recommend what is the best font / types of fonts to use for business cards, again i know this can depend.

            There is no such thing. Which brings me to the next and most critical point...too many new (and not-so-new) designers fall into the trap of thinking of business cards as an end to a means, instead of the other way around.

            A business card (and logo) should never be designed in a vacuum. This should be a part of a well-considered corporate identification program, that includes other stationery items, and possibly signage, advertising, Website, packaging, etc., etc.-- however the mark and fonts might ever conceivably be used.

            Choice of typeface is also dependent upon the specific logo or mark the company uses. Both have to work together harmoniously. If there is a corporate typeface already, that has to be factored into the equation.

            In addition, choice of color and stock should work harmoniously as part of the overall design choices, and are as important as determining factors as typeface choices (yes, you should be exploring different paper choices for weight, grade, finish, and "hand", and suitable colors etc.).

            And it doesn't matter whether you are designing for a Fortune 500 company, or the pizza shop on the corner -- although different in scale, the basic process is the same.

            My point is, that WE cannot choose a font for you, any more than we could choose a good logo or colors without knowing some background. YOU are the one who understands (or should understand) the business and persona of the business you are designing this for and choose appropriately. That's why there are literally tens of thousands of typefaces to consider and choose from. YOU are the designer and it is your job to research, digest, and analyse all factors I've discussed beyond fonts before putting pen to paper (or mouse to screen).

            So perhaps if you can give us some general information about the company and industry, and how the company perceives itself, and what, kind of competition there is, we can offer some ideas.

            Neil
            • 3. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
              Community Member
              Thank you a detailed reply, its much appreciated, yes i thought the asking of a recommended was not a good idea, oopps..

              Yes, if you can offer any idea on the font it would be really helpful, it might give me a bit of inspiration :-) ...

              Basically the company is Rental Service for "houses, apartments and rooms"... which is offered to professionals searching for someone to stay

              I have currently lower left corner - the address then a vertical line and lower right corner .. the telephone, fax and mobile number with the persons email address.. (currently all at 8 point)

              sort of center right i have the persons name currently at 9 point.

              Sort of just above the right lower (above the telephone number i have a greyscale version of the logo with opacity set at around 25% - acts as a kind of watermark

              Then of course upper left i have the logo, the logo currently consists of a pale green with black ... all text is black..
              • 4. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                D. McCahill Community Member
                Without duplicating Neil's good advice, you might want to check out your city library, or the library of a college or university that has a good graphic design program. They probably have a book or two about graphic design in general, and perhaps one on business cards specifically. If the latter exists (you could look online to see) it will give you lots of inspiration and ideas.
                • 5. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                  Neil_Keller Community Member
                  Ian,

                  Generally, rental services are going to be fairly conservative, so you would want a conservative layout and choice of fonts that suggests a solid foundation, integrity, trust...

                  So, consider,
                  How does the client perceive itself?

                  Based upon the neighborhood(s) and the primary customer base they service,
                  Do they rent primarily to blue collar working people?
                  Do they rent to upper middle income yuppies?
                  Do they rent to an arty community? Luxury rentals? Transient/short term rentals?
                  Do they rent commercial office space? Industrial space?
                  Etc.

                  Each of these scenarios could suggest a specific look, layout, choice of colors, stock, fonts, etc. Think it through.

                  Neil
                  • 6. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                    Neil_Keller Community Member
                    Ian,

                    Generally, rental services are going to be fairly conservative, so you would probably want a conservative layout and choice of fonts that suggests a solid foundation, integrity, trust, etc.

                    But, also consider,
                    How does the client perceive itself?

                    Based upon the neighborhood(s) and the primary customer base they service,
                    Do they rent primarily to blue collar working people?
                    Do they rent to upper middle income yuppies?
                    Do they rent to an arty community? Luxury rentals? Transient/short term rentals?
                    Do they rent commercial office space? Industrial space?
                    Etc.

                    Each of these scenarios could suggest a specific look, layout, choice of colors, stock, fonts, etc. Think it through. And remember to consider the other standard stationery, forms, jacket patches, and signage items that may be required to embrace the look you're developing.

                    Neil
                    • 7. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                      John Danek Community Member
                      I've seen some really nicely designed business cards where the fonts are so small and in a color that is so hard to read, they end up useless. Lie you said in your original post, size depends on the font. The computer has made it fairly easy to comp up several font styles, color choices and sizes. Often times, it depends on the amount of information they want to include in the design what size you end up with. I try to stay with 12pt heads, and 10.5pt subtext. But, I'd comp it and print it to make a better determination. Size is only one of many elements in a stationery package design.
                      • 8. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                        Mr. Met Community Member
                        7 pts is real tiny. I have seen business cards with tiny sans serif light, all lower case and I can barely see it. Surprisingly, a lot of them are from design firms that won awards in the books I buy every few years to see what's happening.

                        Inversely, don't make the mistake of making the company name some monster size like 18pt. Yuck. Same thing with the logo. Keep the scale in proportion to the text.

                        Generally speaking, I keep company name no larger than 12 pt, principals name no larger than 10. I prefer to go small as I can while maintaining readibility.

                        Something else, think about what you really need on the card. We renamed our company for 2009 and after consideration, removed the fax number from the bus card. With email and web addresses something had to go. I very rarely get faxes from clients so I decided to lose it to give the card some air.

                        Not related to bus cds but a lot of the design firms (the same ones with the tiny text!) print their envelope backflaps solid with reverse text/logo - something no client of mine has ever been willing to pay for once they find out the cost of printing flat and converting to #10.

                        Go to Amazon.com and search for "graphic design" and you'll find a ton of inexpensive used and new books on design. That's where I usually go. Search for best of stationery design or brochure design or whatever you're interested in.
                        • 9. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                          Neil_Keller Community Member
                          >a lot of them are from design firms that won awards

                          Yep...no argument. In my opinion, there's a bit too much of that, which seems to be more designer ego-stroking than realistic problem-solving. The bottom line is that you can't simply ram stuff down a paying client's throat and have him happy if it's just gonna cause him indigestion.

                          To me, good or successful creative work has to be well-grounded, realistically meeting the client's communications needs in an attractive, budget-conscious, appropriate form. Hopefully, it'll also be memorable...but in a positive way for the client. Any goal for inclusion in a design magazine that may exist is purely secondary to the needs and comfort level of the client.

                          ===

                          >Generally speaking, I keep company name no larger than 12 pt

                          For me, that's often a bit large (depending upon the specific font used) unless the company name is short.

                          Neil
                          • 10. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                            Mr. Met Community Member
                            Agreed. 12 pt is my largest. I like a lot of air so the company name and the person's name and title have their own space on the card. I hate busy design.
                            • 11. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                              Neil_Keller Community Member
                              Designing well for a 3.5"x2" space requiring a number of lines of type is more difficult than it it might initially appear. A mistake that a number of designers make (in addition to using type that is just too small) is cluttering up the face of the card with graphics/logos/12-pt type. And then spilling over onto the back additional information that they couldn't squeeze onto the front.

                              Personally, I'm not a fan with turning a business card into some kind of marketing tool with lines of small, bulleted type, photos, and other "stuff" that is best served in a small brochure handed out with the card.

                              Also, in my opinion, portraits, and product and plant photos do not belong on a business card. And blank lines or underscores on a card to hand write in names or phone numbers borders on tacky.

                              If you can't afford genuine engraving, embossing or the very best quality thermography, stick to good ol' one- or two-color offset or to digital printing on a high quality stock with a good "hand" (feel). And, again, to my eyes, hot-stamping on business cards often seems out of place.. I'd rather see a bit of well-printed metallic ink offset. And fold-over and die-cut/odd shape/odd size cards leave me cold. Cards designed without any integration with other corporate stationery or graphic items are clueless.

                              Some of the very best, most impressive cards I've seen use discrete, well-designed and placed logos balanced against simple 9-pt typography in two offset ink colors on bright white 80# vellum or wove finish stock.

                              Neil
                              • 12. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                Neil_Keller Community Member
                                Designing well for a 3.5"x2" space requiring a number of lines of type is more difficult than it it might initially appear. A mistake that a number of designers make (in addition to using type that is just too small) is cluttering up the face of the card with miscellaneous graphics/big logos/big type. And then spilling over onto the back additional information that they couldn't squeeze onto the front.

                                Personally, I'm not a fan with turning a business card into some kind of marketing tool with lines of small, bulleted type, photos, and other "stuff" that is best served in a small brochure handed out with the card.

                                Also, in my opinion, portraits, and product and plant photos do not belong on a business card. And blank lines or underscores on a card to hand write in names or phone numbers borders on tacky. Save that for doctor appointment cards.

                                If you can't afford genuine engraving, embossing or the very best quality thermography, stick to good ol' one- or two-color offset or to digital printing on a high quality stock with a good "hand" (feel). And, again, to my eyes, hot-stamping on business cards often seems out of place.. I'd rather see a bit of well-printed metallic ink offset. And fold-over and die-cut/odd shape/odd size cards leave me cold. Cards designed without any integration with other corporate stationery or graphic items are clueless.

                                Some of the very best, most impressive cards I've seen use discrete, well-designed and placed logos balanced against simple 9-pt typography in two offset ink colors on bright white 80# vellum or wove finish stock -- and lots of white space.

                                Neil
                                • 13. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                  Mr. Met Community Member
                                  Neil: I agree with almost everything you said except the bit about thermography/engraving. Outside of MDs and lawyers, I never print thermography. Certainly not with 2 or more PMS colors or full color. With the advent of digital printing (hence the full color) and use/abuse of drop shadows since ID was introduced, I avoid thermo unless someone insists upon it. Too many logos (not designed by me!) have that god forsaken gradient circle or variation of the swash or (ta da) the gradient circle with a swash across it to make thermography an aesthetic option. Go browse logoworks or any of those online logo factories and you'll see immediately that thermo is not an option. Other than contractors who come off the street and want to spend less than $50, I don't bother with thermo.

                                  Occasionally, I will preprint shells with logo embossed or raised but then imporint flat.
                                  • 14. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                    Neil_Keller Community Member
                                    Richard,<br /><br />I appreciate your comment, but you're reading way to much into my one comment about "the very best quality thermography" -- which I assume would be simple, one color, and type only job -- carefully produced. No mixed media, multicolor, very fine line or large color areas. It still would not be my particular choice, but I mention that process as a possible option.<br /><br />And no reason why doctors and accountants have to have thermography other than there are a lot of ads offering a bunch of black thermographed cards for a bargain price.<br />>use/abuse of drop shadows since ID was introduced<br /><br />Drop shadows were already old hat with paste-up mechanicals in the '80s, long before digital technology.<br /><br />Not sure what your reference is for genuine engraving.<br />>Other than contractors who come off the street and want to spend less than $50<br /><br />They won't pay my prices, so it's not a problem.  <g><br /><br />Neil
                                    • 15. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                      (JunkMailer) Community Member
                                      I'm not sure why you have such an aversion to doing 2-color thermography. I worked for a couple of years in a shop that did nothing but thermography and I've seen a lot of great looking jobs that were 2 and sometimes even 3 or 4 colors (rare, but usually for a good reason). In the wrong hands, complicated thermography jobs can go terribly wrong, but our shop seemed to produce consistent good results. The trick is to know when to tell a client that their gradients will mud together, etc. We always knew when to be honest with a client where quality was a concern.

                                      It's been several years, but I personally still have a soft spot for good thermography.
                                      • 16. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                        Neil_Keller Community Member
                                        Thermography was originally developed as a poor-man's alternative to steel or copper engraving. At its best, thermography can approach the appearance of genuine engraving -- even though there are enough giveaways in its appearance to keep a good eye from being fooled.

                                        But (your company aside) a lot of thermography is of middling-to-miserable quality, with bumps and lumps making it look like some kind of skin infection.

                                        Neil
                                        • 17. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                          Neil_Keller Community Member
                                          Thermography was originally developed as a poor-man's alternative to steel or copper engraving. At its best, thermography can approach the appearance of genuine engraving -- even though there are enough giveaways in its appearance to keep a good eye from being fooled.

                                          But (your company aside) a lot of thermography is of middling-to-miserable quality, with bumps and lumps making it look like some kind of skin infection.

                                          I would take a good two-color litho card any day over poor thermography.

                                          Neil
                                          • 18. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                            Mr. Met Community Member
                                            With the cost of printing today, I can't afford to do one card thermo in-house. I send out one off cards to Business Card Express (BCE) and the quality of the paper and printing leave a lot to be desired. If I can gang run thermo or flat I can turn a profit.
                                            • 19. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                              (JunkMailer) Community Member
                                              Usually those bumps and lumps occurred on large areas of ink coverage. While it is near impossible to attain perfect smoothness in those situations, an experienced thermography pressman can at least deliver a consistent appearance across a large area of ink. The process actually uses heat to "bake" the ink and it rises from the surface of the stock. The toast never came out very tasty, but I found the process of printing business cards and stationary quite fascinating.

                                              In response to Richard, we considered companies such as BCE to be competition, but we used our superior quality (not always necessarily price) as a selling point to our clients. My company that I worked for has since gone under, so that should tell you who won the quality vs. price battle in thermography.
                                              • 20. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                                Neil_Keller Community Member
                                                >so that should tell you who won the quality vs. price battle in thermography.

                                                True for a lot of things in life. Consider the mouth-watering/sub-$1000-to-low 4-figure prices of large screen HDTVs vs the more sobering (but not outrageous) pricing on similar-sized sets capable of far better pictures. Which are the ones that are going to fly off the shelves in the big box stores?

                                                It's often difficult to sell quality over price. If the customers' expectations are not that high, or if they don't know any better, or if they simply don't have the budget, which will they buy? And today's economy certainly doesn't make it any easier.

                                                Sure, I love the picture quality and capabilities of Sony's $2400 11" OLED HDTV. But I settled for a $200 15" HDTV set for my office desk. I know its shortcomings (although, surprisingly, very few); but I couldn't justify the cost of the OLED set.

                                                Neil
                                                • 21. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                                  Mr. Met Community Member
                                                  People smirked when Vizio flat screens came out and they wiped the floor with far more expensive TV manufacturers.
                                                  • 22. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                                    Community Member
                                                    Wow, this turned into a pretty long thread..

                                                    just want to thank everyone for the insight.. much appreciated..
                                                    • 23. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                                      Mr. Met Community Member
                                                      Sort of related to topic: when designing a logo ALWAYS see how it works on a business card before designing any other collateral. If it works aesthetically at smallest size it will work at larger size. I still get logos from designers ("my nephew is very talented") that take up most of a letter size sheet and when I reduce for a bus cd, all the detail disappears. "Hey, you have any idea how much work I did on that!"
                                                      • 24. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                                        Neil_Keller Community Member
                                                        >when designing a logo ALWAYS see how it works on a business card before designing any other collateral.

                                                        ALWAYS see how it works with ALL conceivable media and applications that the specific entity would realistically use. This includes various collateral, packaging, advertising, stationery, Website, signage, vehicles, uniforms, TV, billboards, building graphics, et al; in color and/or black-and-white; offset litho, silkscreen, blind embossing, engraving, hot stamping, etc., all in a range of sizes. Obviously, the needs of the corner pizza shop are going to be a bit more modest than those of a Fortune 500 company.

                                                        Most people who "design" business cards and logos are clueless when it comes to the overall system that needs to be designed and implemented for corporate identity. To allow a logo and a business card determine the overall persona of an entity is to allow a very small tail wag a very large dog.
                                                        >If it works aesthetically at smallest size it will work at larger size.

                                                        Not always. Often graphics have to be modified to optimize and adapt them for different sizes and uses. This includes refinements of line weights, typefaces and kerning, art complexity, color, etc. But, admittedly, more problems can crop up trying to force a logo down in size.
                                                        >I still get logos from designers ("my nephew is very talented")

                                                        I think that same nephew has knocked on my door a few times over the years...

                                                        Neil
                                                        • 25. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                                          Mr. Met Community Member
                                                          Neil: I've been doing this for 25 years. The intent was more for beginners such as Ian as far as logo design. Even so, I always tell my designers - especially interns and novices - to drop whatever logo they are designing into a dummy bc template. Obviously the logo has to work across all collateral but generally speaking if it works small it will work large. Not so the other way around. It's very good advice for a beginner or someone just starting out. I deal with tons of churches and civic organizations that do their own "design" and telling them to design small has saved all of us a lot of grief when it comes time to print their masterpiece.

                                                          I have tons of customers these days that only have a business card and a website. Nothing else. Maybe a brochure or palm card. Stationery suites are rapidly going away.

                                                          Another reason for designing and testing small is all the gradients people want in logos. Again, go to a site like logoworks to see their portfolio. Can't tell you how many times I look at a graphic artist and they're building this swirly thing with gradients in cmyk at 8 x 10. Ain't gonna work when reduced to 10% to fit a biz card.

                                                          I'm probably old school (passed the 25 year mark in the biz this year) but a lot of what is supposed to be a logo on the online logo mills strikes me as cartoonish. The ones that stick with me are few and far between.

                                                          When I get an intern in I give them these criteria when designing a logo: 2 primary Pantone colors, no clip art, no gradients. The AI file can be no larger than 3 x 3. I want them to think a bit on their intent when starting to comp a logo.
                                                          • 26. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                                            Neil_Keller Community Member
                                                            Richard,

                                                            And I've been doing this professionally since 1965.
                                                            >generally speaking if it works small it will work large. Not so the other way around.

                                                            That's what I said. But the key word is "generally". It's like saying you only have to worry about a snake being poisonous if it is a rattlesnake. Many times we've had to modify the appearance of a logo to optimize it for specific sizes or media. One size does not fit all.

                                                            I suspect that Ian is relatively new to this, but I still don't want to mislead him. So, if there will never be anything beyond a business card and other office stationery, then your advice makes sense. But, if there is going to be collateral, newspaper or yellow pages advertising, signage, pens or leave-behinds, a proper due diligence would include exploring how a mark (whether pure logotype, symbol, or combination) works in all these environments.

                                                            And granted, much of what passes for "design" work today is clueless. Computers just make it easier to make mistaeks. (sic)
                                                            >When I get an intern in I give them these criteria when designing a logo:

                                                            That's fine -- as long as there is a realization that it may not be an appropriate design in other sizes or media.

                                                            Neil
                                                            • 27. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                                              Neil_Keller Community Member
                                                              Richard,
                                                              >I've been doing this for 25 years.

                                                              And I've been doing this professionally since 1965.
                                                              >generally speaking if it works small it will work large. Not so the other way around.

                                                              That's what I said. But the key word is "generally". It's like saying you only have to worry about a snake being poisonous if it is a rattlesnake. Many times we've had to modify the appearance of a logo to optimize it for specific sizes or media. One size does not fit all.

                                                              I suspect that Ian is relatively new to this, but I still don't want to mislead him. So, if there will never be anything beyond a business card and other office stationery, then your advice makes sense. But, if there is going to be collateral, newspaper or yellow pages advertising, signage, pens or leave-behinds, a proper due diligence would include exploring how a mark (whether pure logotype, symbol, or combination) works in all these environments.

                                                              And granted, much of what passes for "design" work today is clueless. Computers just make it easier to make mistaeks. (sic)
                                                              >When I get an intern in I give them these criteria when designing a logo:

                                                              That's fine -- as long as there is a realization that it may not be an appropriate design in other sizes or media.

                                                              Neil
                                                              • 28. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                                                Mr. Met Community Member
                                                                Clip art and stock photography has been a tremendous drain on creativity. Especially over the past 10 years since istockphoto took off. Even the huge agencies in NY use it. Can't count the times I've seen billboards or ads by the big agencies that used the same images I used in earlier campaigns. And even though istockphoto has millions of images, relatively few are usable which is why you'll often see the same images pop up in ads from time to time. Any art director with a good eye is going to know what's usable and what's not. That's why some images have been downloaded a lot and others with similar theme/look are not.
                                                                • 29. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                                                  Neil_Keller Community Member
                                                                  Richard,
                                                                  >Clip art and stock photography has been a tremendous drain on creativity.

                                                                  We're going off on a tangent here. Clip art and stock has been around for years.

                                                                  The fault lies elsewhere, starting with lazy teachers and students in mediocre graphics programs and schools that don't teach good foundations of design, typography, copywriting, production, and printing.

                                                                  And since, over the years, computers have dropped to everyday commodity pricing (I paid around $22,000 for my original Mac, standard peripherals and software), many clueless folks now have them and figure if they load up with Photoshop, Illustrator, Indesign, and Acrobat, they too can be good designers. Having a good camera doesn't make one a good photographer. Having a good car doesn't make one a good driver. Having a good stove doesn't make one a good cook. Having a good credit card doesn't make one a good dresser.

                                                                  Neil
                                                                  • 30. Re: Font Type and Size for a standard business card?
                                                                    Neil_Keller Community Member
                                                                    Richard,
                                                                    >Clip art and stock photography has been a tremendous drain on creativity.

                                                                    We're going off on a tangent here. Clip art and stock has been around for years. Used with discretion, instead of as a crutch) can lead to some good design solutions.

                                                                    The fault lies elsewhere, starting with lazy teachers and students in mediocre graphics programs and schools that don't teach good foundations of design, typography, copywriting, production, and printing.

                                                                    And since, over the years, computers have dropped to everyday commodity pricing (I paid around $22,000 for my original Mac, standard peripherals and software), many inexperienced folks now have them and figure if they load up with Photoshop, Illustrator, Indesign, and Acrobat, they too can be good designers.

                                                                    Having a good camera doesn't make one a good photographer. Having a good car doesn't make one a good driver. Having a good stove doesn't make one a good cook.

                                                                    Neil