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the mc blog

HELLO FRIENDS!

Welcome to The Modern Collective blog! We are Adam + Amanda. We are photographers who love fun and funky design. We design modern templates for photographers and sell them in our shop! Cool, right?

Learn more about us, here.

Look What Susan Did! // Taylor Grad Card Design Remix

September 09, 2013   //   POSTED IN: FEATURED PHOTOGRAPHER, INSPIRATION, PRODUCT SPOTLIGHTS, TEMPLATE HOW TO

Check out this all of this glam! Susan of Susan Dodd Photography gave us a little surprise in our inbox over the weekend with images of this stunning Accordion Book that she designed using our Taylor Grad Card template. Susan used all of the elements from the grad card to come up with this coordinating design and we LOVE it! Isn't it fantastic?!

 

 

Anything is possible with our layered PSD templates. With a little time and just a bit of creativity you can create numerous products from a single design! Thanks for sharing Susan! Click the image below to see the Taylor Grad Card in The Modern Collective Shop! 

 

 

 

Did you use our templates in a creative way? Send us photos and be featured on The Modern Collective blog too! 

From Grad Card to Modern Bridal Shower Invite // Design Change Up

July 05, 2013   //   POSTED IN: FEATURED PHOTOGRAPHER, INSPIRATION, Photog Quick Tips, PHOTOGRAPHY RESOURCES, PRODUCT SPOTLIGHTS, TEMPLATE HOW TO

We love photographers that think outside of the box! Jodi and DeeAyna from JW Photography did just that when designing this bridal shower invitation for DeeAyna's daughter! With a few simple changes to the Taylor 5x7 Grad Card Design from The Modern Collective Shop, this duo created a modern and fun bridal shower invite that everyone is sure to love! How cute is that front image?! Thanks for sharing Jodi and DeeAyna! 

 

Choosing the Best Paper for Your Press Products // Tip Tuesday

June 11, 2013   //   POSTED IN: Photog Quick Tips, PHOTOGRAPHY RESOURCES, TEMPLATE HOW TO, Tip Tuesday

 

As a self proclaimed paper snob, choosing the best press paper for a design project can be a challenging task! I love the options that lab offer these days, but the variety of press papers available from labs such as WHCC and Millers doesn't make the decision process any easier! With choices like pearl, linen, watercolor, bamboo, and recycled; the options are nearly endless. So how exactly does a person choose the best press paper for their printed designs and products? I share a few of my tips below!

 

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DOES MY PAPER CHOICE FIT WITH MY DESIGN //

Many photographers fall in love with anything new and different and are eager to try out the newest paper options from their labs, but it's important to not fall into this trap when choosing the best paper for your product. Make sure your paper choice matches your design. Is your design warm, is it modern, is it vibrant or bold? Some papers pair better with different designs. Below are a few products from The Modern Collective and the papers we would choose to best highlight the product's design. 

 

see this product in the shop: Chalk Me Up Birth Announcement

 

see this product in the shop: Liam Grad Card

 

click this image to see this product in the shop

see this product in the shop: Senior Model How-To Marketing Set

 

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DOES MY PAPER CHOICE FIT MY BRAND? //


Not all paper options offered by your lab match with your studio's brand. Modern portrait studios probably won't use many of the heavy textured paper options because they fit better with rich and warm designs that more traditional studio's may prefer. Pearl or Standard UV coated papers may be a better option for a modern studio. 

 

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WILL MY PAPER CHOICE WORK FOR HOW THE PRODUCT WILL BE USED? //

Not all paper options work for each use. If your client is planning on adding a written note to the inside of a press printed card, make sure you are choosing a press paper that will accept ink and will not smudge. UV Coating would not be a good option for this use. However, a watercolor paper would be an excellent choice!

 

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DOES MY PAPER CHOICE MATCH MY CLIENT'S EXPECTATIONS? //

In the end the client really does have the choice, but it's your job as a their photographer to help them choose a paper that will highlight your work the best. Don't overwhelm your client with all the paper options. Choose one or two that you feel would be the best options for their product and help them choose the final paper choice! 

 

 

Wheww! Who knew there would be so much thought involved when choosing paper! Hopefully these tips will help you determine the best match for your next design project! Want to see more Tip Tuesday posts? CLICK HERE and check back next Tuesday for another helpful tip for photographers! 

Template Remix // A Creative Use For Your New Template

April 10, 2013   //   POSTED IN: INSPIRATION, Photog Quick Tips, PRODUCT SPOTLIGHTS, TEMPLATE HOW TO

We design all of our templates to be easy to use for customers who don't have a lot of Photoshop knowledge, but our templates are completely layered for those customers who want to jump in and pick the template apart. Providing a layered PSD gives our customers the flexibility to rework, change up, and customize the templates for their needs. Today we are featuring a creative use for the I'm New Here Birth Announcement Template. Although the template itself isn't changed a whole lot, the card is being used for a unique purpose.

 

Our client came to us looking for a birthday invite for a joint party for her son and daughter. We needed something that was gender neutral and a design that coordinated with party's farm theme. Our client requested to have a lot of images on the invite as well. 

 

With these requests in mind we went to work and decided the I'm New Here Birth Announcment was the perfect fit for the client's needs. The modern wood texture blended well with the farm theme and the design was neutral enough to showcase the photos of her children. We changed up the text and added a little "see y'all there" farm talk. With that we had an invite design that our client loved! With a simple change, we had a whole new use for a cute and versatile birth announcement template! 

 

CARD DESIGN  //  CUSTOMIZED (farm birthday party invite)

 

CARD DESIGN  //  BEFORE (as sold in the shop):

  

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Click the link below for more info about the I'm New Here Birth Announcement design

 

Visit The Shop

How to Create A PDF Investment Guide // Tip Tuesday

April 02, 2013   //   POSTED IN: Photog Quick Tips, TEMPLATE HOW TO, Tip Tuesday

 

We are back with another Tip Tuesday! Today we are taking you step by step in creating a PDF version of your studio's investment guide. This is a great format to have on hand so you can easily email your investment information to clients or link to your investment guide on your website! Watch the video below to learn how! 

 

 

 

The investment guide used in today's video demo is part of the Senior Model How-To Marketing Set. You can see more information about the marketing set, HERE.

 

See you next week with another Tip!

Quoteables // The How-To Video

June 02, 2012   //   POSTED IN: Photog Quick Tips, PHOTOGRAPHY RESOURCES, PRODUCT SPOTLIGHTS, TEMPLATE HOW TO

We've heard a lot of great feedback about our newest product, Quoteables, over the last week but we want to inspire you with a few projects that we've created using this new brush set! Watch the video below to see four projects from start to finish. We hope it inspires you to create great things with your Quoteables set to use in your business!

 

Ready to purchase? Click the "buy now" button below!

 

Buy Now

 

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Special thanks to Michelle Kane Photography + Actions for her jump start training on creating these tutorials! If you haven't seen Michelle's work or used her actions, please go check her out! She has a ton of photoshop tutorials available on her site as well! We are so lucky to call her our friend! Thanks Michelle!

Quoteables // A New Product from The Modern Collective

May 23, 2012   //   POSTED IN: INSPIRATION, PRODUCT SPOTLIGHTS, TEMPLATE HOW TO

We are so excited to introduce you to our newest product at The Modern Collective! Say hello to Quoteables. Quoetables is a set of 28 kick-butt photoshop brushes made up of fun, witty, and playful saying as well as coordinating banners, badges, and graphics for you to create one of a kind design elements to use in your studio's marketing pieces and portrait products! Take a look below to see what is included in this set and look for more sets of Quoteables to be added to the shop in the coming months!

 

CREATIVE USES FOR THE QUOTEABLES PRODUCT //

packaging for photographers bag tag

custom baggu reusable bag

image overlay stamp brushmodern shipping label

 

Ready to purchase? Click the "buy now" button below!

 

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Buy Now

How To Sell Holiday Cards // Quick Tips for Photographers

November 14, 2011   //   POSTED IN: INSPIRATION, Photog Quick Tips, PRODUCT SPOTLIGHTS, TEMPLATE HOW TO

"I want holiday cards, but they are just so expensive! I don't want to spend the money when people just throw them away!"  Sound familiar?? Yeah, we thought so!

 

We've all heard these words come from our clients over the last few weeks as we present them with our holiday card designs. How do you turn this doubtful client into an ecstatic customer that can't wait to send hundreds of your holiday cards to their friends and family? (ok... maybe not hundreds, but you get the point!) We have a few quick tips below that will help you sell more holiday cards and spread the name of your studio to your client's family and friends! Let's begin!

 

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#1: It's all in the presentation.
You have to show it to sell it! Let's face it, all of us are more prone to purchase a product that we can hold in our hand or a product that is custom designed to meet our needs. Why should holiday cards be any different? Don't just put out a blank statement telling your clients that cards are available. Take the extra time to customize a card design for each and every client you photograph. Place it in their online gallery, present it to them during their in person viewing, add it as an extra page in their proof book, or send them a custom email. It only takes a few minutes to add their images and type their name to make a custom design. The Modern Collective 2011 Holiday Card Collection can make the pre-design process even faster!

 

Here is an example of how we've presented holiday cards to our clients in the past at Adam Hommerding Photography. This image was displayed in their online gallery. We now present the card designs to them in Pro Select at their in-person ordering appointment where we finalize the card design while they place their portrait order. Either way, the custom design with their images get's their attention and provides an emotional connection that will increase your chance of a sale!

 

Featured Card – theMC 5×7 Holiday Card #13  //  all available here

 

#2: Don't overwhelm your clients with options.

Just because there are over fifty card shape, sizes, and fold options doesn't mean you need to offer them all! Giving too many choices to your client can kill your sale. They don't know what to choose, so they don't buy any! Start with three predesigned options for them to choose from. Maybe give them a variety of size and card styles. One could be a 5x7 flat, another a 5x5 trifold, and the last one a boutique die cut design! Giving three options allows you to show them what is available but still gives your client the ability to make a decision of what they like best! Have them choose their favorite and complete the card design! Below we've included three card predesigns that shows the variety that we would present to one of our clients.

Featured Cards – theMC Holiday Card #9 (5x7 flat), #14 (5x5 boutique), and #1 (5x5 trifold)  // all available: here

 

#3: Make the cost of the cards more appealing.
The number one client objection that our readers shared on our Facebook page, when asked what is your greatest struggle when selling press printed holiday cards, was PRICE! Press printed cards are expensive, and leave very little room for profitable markup while still being affordable to your clients. First and foremost, look at holiday cards as marketing potential for your studio. Your clients are sending these cards to people that more than likely match your target market, and they are paying you for it! Make sure every card that leaves your studio includes your website and phone number. If you aren't, you are missing an easy way to market your business. Because of the card's marketing potential, consider pricing them with a lower markup to make custom holiday cards more appealing and affordable to your clients. Rather than setting a price for each card size and shape, set a single price for flat and a single price for folded cards to make the pricing simple and easy to understand.

 

#4: Make the design logical so it sells itself.
Making one simple design change to one of our three client card predesigns has more than doubled our holiday card sales. Why? It is logical and resolves the two issues that we mentioned in the very first line of this blog post - price + people throwing the cards away! Here is what we do.... (Seriously, this is SO EASY and sells almost every time we present this option to our clients)

 

THE NUMBER ONE HOLIDAY CARD SELLING DESIGN TIP: (are you ready for this?)
We start with a 5x7 flat or 5x7 folded card template. We then eliminate the front or back of the card design and replace it with one single image. Because 5x7 is a standard photo size, designing the card with a solid, single image on the front makes it possible for card recipients to frame the card after the holidays or leave the card displayed on their refrigerator after the christmas trees and tinsel have been taken down for the season! It acts as a gift portrait rather than a holiday card! (genius, right?) This fixes the price dilemma. Instead of the clients fretting over the price of the card, they look more affordable at $2-$4 per card when compared to a photographic gift portrait that is priced anywhere between $35 and $150 per print. What better selling feature than presenting the idea of sending a custom 5x7 portrait of your client's family or children to everyone on their holiday mailing list! Below are two 5x7 flat card designs that we designed using this method! Both are cards that our clients have purchased this fall to send out for the holidays this year!

Featured Cards – theMC 5×7 Holiday Cards #9 + #20  //  available for purchase: here

 

#5: Design with simple, clean, and modern card templates. (read as: "buy theMC holiday cards!" lol)
Seriously, with all joking aside, starting with simple, clean, and modern templates that are super easy to use will only make your holiday card sales easier! Your clients will be happy, and you will be happy that you didn't have to spend hours coming up with original designs in the wee hours of the night when you would rather be sleeping and dreaming of your christmas presents! ;) All cards in this blog post are for sale over at theModern Collective Shop! If you like what you see, go check out all 20 card designs by clicking the banner below!

 

 

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We hope these few tips will help you tackle the holiday card sales process with a smile! We know that if you implement them, you too will see big changes in your holiday card sales! Have input, or questions? Post them in the comments below!

 

From us at theModern Collective, have a happy (and profitable) holiday season!!

 

A Color Switcheroo Made Easy! | Layered Photoshop Templates for Photographers

June 23, 2011   //   POSTED IN: PRODUCT SPOTLIGHTS, TEMPLATE HOW TO

We've had a few questions come through asking if the colors in The Modern Collective templates can be changed! Our answer is simple.... YEP! ;)

 

Look below for an example of a simple and easy color swap on our Modern Age Accordion template!

 

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The Modern Collective templates are designed to give you creative freedom. We've made everything fully layered for those of you that want to mix things up a bit! You can move things around, change the colors, and even create completely different products using elements from our templates. Check out the photos below. Using the template instructions included with each of our product downloads, the Modern Age Accordion Album got a few minor changes, color swaps, and it quickly got a whole new look. It's seriously simple guys + you can do it too!

 

ORIGINAL DESIGN (as sold in the shop) //

 

 

CUSTOMIZED //

Easy Peasy! Now go look at our products with a new eye as you are browsing the shop! Think, create, and make something wonderful! Oh, and then share it with us too! We would love to see what you are coming up with!

 

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Interested in purchasing the Modern Age Accordion Template?

 

Buy Now

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