Rejection, card style & balance (submitting tips)
Hooray for the weekend right?
So, today I am going to talk a little bit about getting your projects rejected from a magazine call. In no way am I the end all to know all on how to get a project picked up for publication, I am just sharing my own personal experience, and passing that information to you all. First, I would like to stress, to not to take rejection personally. There are so many reasons a project isn't picked up.
A few are:
**Beautiful card, but old product. If you are going to submit with "older" stuff, use it in a way that has never been seen before. You want to "wow" the editors. For this reason, I try to only use the newest of the new stuff out there.
**Beautiful card, but it doesn't have a good page mate. In most publications, your card is paired with another card, so there needs to be some kind of flow when you open the page. This is just the luck of the draw really.
**Beautiful card, but someone might have used similar (or the same) stamp or paper, that the editors like better.
**Beautiful card, but they already have 10 birthday cards. Look at your product in different ways. Also submit the less common occasions. Do you not have the "right" stamp? Create a sentiment on your computer, and print it out onto card stock. There are several designers who do not stamp, and create their own custom sentiments in the perfect font they thought of in their head.
These next few items, are more of personal advice.
When submitting a card, or making a card in general, make sure that the card is as balanced as possible. If there isn't a natural flow to your project, and there isn't anywhere for your eyes to land. Something is wrong with your project. You know this when you are making it, you have the "something is missing, but I don't know what" idea flash in your head. When I have that thought, usually my card is really unbalanced.
Stay true to your style. Editors get to "know" your style, and will start to recognize your cards. You will create your best work under parameters in which you are the most comfortable. For instance, if you are working on a card and it just isn't coming together. Put the card aside and come back to it later or the next day. Sometimes I put a project aside for several days, until I come up with a solution that works and that I like. Or, just start over. Sometimes forcing something will just get you a hot mess.
Use the things you are hoarding and are saving for that "special" project. That special project is now. Look around at all of your supplies. I bet you are thinking, "why didn't I use that?" Am I right? I think that all the time. So I try my best to use my most favorite items, that make me smile by just looking at them.
Again, do not take it personal. I get cards rejected all the time, and I just don't let it bother me. Of course I wonder why a certain card didn't get picked up, but I only let myself think that thought for just a moment, and then I move on. Is there a formula to getting your cards picked up? No. If you know of one please let me know lol. I have heard several people say "its about who you know" that is untrue. If that was the case, why did I ever get a card picked up? Or anyone else for that matter? I think some will say that, to make themselves feel better when they have tried so hard and are frustrated, or cannot handle rejection. Which is totally understandable. For many, seeing a project in print is a dream come true (for me too), just don't let it define you if you are still waiting for that moment. If you keep on trying, something will get picked up...the odds are in your favor.
Also, look at the publication you are submitting to. Does your style fit the style of the magazine? Sometimes, people are just submitting to the wrong publication.
With all of that said, I will show you a few cards that were rejected from the Go to Sketches call from Paper Crafts (this call is now closed). I still think both of them are really pretty. Almost 3000 cards were submitted to this call, and only 288 were picked up. In this case the odds were not in my favor lol. Plus, from what I hear, designers really stepped up their game for this call and made amazing work. Neither one of these are amazing. One is pretty and the other is cute, but they are not the caliber they were looking for this time. And, I am okay with that.
Now all I have to do is wait for someone to die or get sick to give these away lolololol. Sorry bad humor, but it made me laugh lol.
Have a great weekend!!