ThePaperWorker.com Helps Artrepreneurs Make Memorable Impressions

Building an identity for yourself as an artist, designer, author, or photographer is a challenge. Not only are you judged by the creativity and originality of your work, but you may also be judged by how creatively and professionally you present yourself.

Whenever you interact with fans and customers online (through your website, blog, and social media) and in real life (at art fairs, book signings, or photo exhibitions), every interaction adds up to make a memorable impression. (Marketers call these interactions ‘touchpoints.’)

How you package your products also speaks volumes about your commitment to your craft. Is your packaging bland, boring, and cheap-looking? Or do customers feel like they are receiving a wonderful gift to themselves when they receive a box in the mail from you.

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One company that can help you make a consistently first-class impression is ThePaperWorker.com.

Through ThePaperWorker.com, you can use online templates and digital design tools to order as many boxes as need, whether it’s 5, 10, 20, or 100, or anywhere in between. At the same time, you can order presentation folders, tabletop display signs, or banners that you can take with you to events where you will be selling your works in person.

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“Our packaging has detail and dimension, we have created ways to make the process easy and straightforward for our customers, regardless of their knowledge of custom packaging,” said Todd Anson, president of ThePaperWorker.com “Pricing is broken down simply by quantity, product descriptions are detailed, templates are provided in PDF/EPS formats, and 3D PDFs are available to view on every product.”

If you prefer to have an experienced package designer create your packaging graphics or review the designs you have uploaded, you can request those services on ThePaperWorker.com website.

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If you deliver files on DVDs or thumb drives, you can create presentation materials that remind clients of why they should continue to work with you.

Expertise from The Colad Group

All of the products available through ThePaperWorker.com reflect the deep expertise of The Colad Group, a company that has been developing custom presentation materials and packaging for more than 60 years.

Until five or six years ago, The Colad Group could only serve customers who needed at least 250 boxes. That’s because their printing processes required making plates for each color of ink and dies for cutting and scoring the box designs on a die-cutting press.

Digital printing and cutting technology has changed all that. Orders submitted through ThePaperWorker.com are produced on automated digital presses and finishing equipment. Full-color photographic images can easily be printed on the boxes without the extra time and costs associated traditional offset printing.

For more information about the benefits of custom packaging, see the infographic posted on The Colad Group blog.

More about The Colad Group’s commitment to using and recycling environmentally friendly packaging materials, is available on their website.

 

Superfine! Art Fair Aims to Humanize the Art World

When art collectors, dealers, and gallerists come to Miami Art Week the first week of December, the Superfine! art fair will remind them that significant changes are underway in how art is discovered, experienced, and purchased.

superfinelogoSuperfine! The Fairest Fair is a Miami-based contemporary art fair that wants to humanize the art world by building a platform for the passionate people who create and showcase art. The ultimate goal of the Superfine! art fair is to deliver high-quality, accessibly priced artwork direct to collectors and collectors-to-be.

During Miami Art Week December 1-4, 2016, Superfine! art fair will feature several large-scale installation projects by local and international artists.

Air sculpture by Asser Saint-Val

For example, fair-goers who approach the main Superfine! space directly across from Art Miami’s main tent will be greeted by a massive, surreal air sculpture by Haitian-born, Miami-based artist Asser Saint-Val.  A 20 x 20 ft. helium-filled sculpture will float above a queen-sized bed equipped with headphones and scented with fragrances by the installation sponsor CARON Paris.

Within the Superfine! art space, photographic artist Mark Reamy from Vermont will invite attendees to shuffle, dance, and interact with their own shadows and those of other fair-goers via his “See You on the Other Side” multi-media installation.

Artist Tyler Whitlock of Asheville, NC will showcase politically charged and profanely relevant mixed-media paintings that use his patented “glitch-collage” style.

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The Nice N’ Easy team of artists Jeffrey Noble and Allison Matherly are creating an immersive, environmental installation in the rear garden area of the facility. The “technicolor pastel picnic” will feature customized swing sets, a project mapped mural, and carefully chosen native plants. The immersive work will serve as both a functional seating area and nostalgia-driven backdrop for the fair’s programming, which includes educational panels, music, and social events.

A mobile art gallery housed in refurbished Shasta trailer will house a playfully dark and surreal micro-theater experience by artist Jen Clay.

The full list of exhibitors is posted on the Superfine! website.

Reaching collectors-to-be

The Superfine! art fair platform provides a space for artists, curators, and forward-thinking dealers to connect with emerging collectors who may feel excluded by more traditional art settings. The fair organizers believe “inspired, original artwork is an aesthetic necessity in the lives of everyone, not just a select few.”

Superfine! began in 2015 as a challenge to the art establishment. In the 60,000 square foot office building they refurbished in the Little Haiti district of Miami, they are creating an accessible means for galleries, artists, and designers to directly reach a targeted clientele within a dynamic setting.

Superfine! believes collectors are “the grease that makes the gears of the art world turn.” So they strive to give new collectors access to the best work out there.

In conjunction with Miami Art Week, Superfine! will host a Young Collectors’ Ice Cream Social on December 1 and a panel discussion entitled, “Sorry, I’m Not a Collector” on December 4. The panel will address the concerns of art-world outsiders who might want to become collectors and suggest actions that art establishments could take to attract the steady stream of new collectors they require to further the careers of their artists.

Superfine!’s year-round programming includes countless opportunities for emerging and established Miami collectors to connect with art throughout the year.  Their next big presentation is scheduled for President’s Day weekend in February.

Packlane Serves Creative Entrepreneurs Who Want Custom Packaging

If you sell your own branded products online, consider custom packaging. It can set you apart from competitors and make a big impression on your customers.

According to a 2016 eCommerce Packaging Study by Dotcom Distribution, the quality of your packaging can play a role in fostering customer loyalty. In their survey, 40 percent of the respondents said they would be more likely to purchase from an online retailer again if the product they ordered came in gift-like or premium package.

Thanks to companies such as Packlane, you no longer have to be a high-volume seller of products to afford great-looking packaging.

Packlane custom boxes

Whether you need a few small cartons or large printed shipping boxes, Packlane can help you create full-color, customized packaging that will get your customers excited about what’s inside.

In addition to ordering as few as 10 boxes, you can choose the graphics, the size and type of box, and the type of materials used.

When it’s time to re-order new boxes, you can adjust the design to include seasonal messaging or update your branding. You won’t risk being stuck with hundreds of boxes with outdated graphics.

Types of Boxes

Packlane offers three main styles of boxes: a classic carton, a mailer box, a shipping box. Each type can be sized to snugly fit your products. You won’t have to stuff a box that is too big with extra material to keep the contents from shifting around.

Types of Materials

When you place your order, you can choose to print the graphics printed on stocks ranging from thin, flat paperboard to thick corrugated graphics. You can specify whether you want your graphics printed on brown Kraft paper or a crisp white paper. The brown paper is fine for simple graphics with muted colors. The white paper is ideal for bright colors and designs that include images.

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Design Tools

The website includes tools that make it easy for you to create and preview your design in 3 dimensions.

Or, you can request a 2D dieline for the box style and size you choose. A dieline is flattened outline of the box design that shows where the folds and cutlines will go. Just follow the Artwork Guidelines, and Packlane will take care of the rest.

For quantities from 10 to 2,000, you can get an instant quote. (If you need larger quantities, you can request a quote.)

Design Training

To help creative entrepreneurs get the best results from their packaging, Packlane has developed a free 36-minute Skillshare course: Packaging Design for Creatives and Entrepreneurs.

The video series discusses  box styles, design considerations, production and finishing techniques, dielines, RGB vs. CMYK color, how to use Illustrator, and tips for creating or uploading your design on the Packlane website.

Additional Insights

On the Packlane blog, you’ll find interviews with some of the entrepreneurs who have ordered boxes from Packlane. Michael Kushner, of Stefans Head explains why he is using custom-designed boxes to ship his company’s limited-edition T-shirts.

Another Packlane customer is a start-up that sends a curated selection of Paleo-friendly snacks to subscribers every month. He says, “A professional image is extremely important to start-ups. Custom packaging sets us up for success from the very beginning.”

The Packlane blog also contains tips such as How to Choose the Right Packaging for Your Product.

 

Design Interactive Uses Canon MREAL System for Mixed Reality Training

Canon U.S.A. has selected Design Interactive in Orlando, Florida as the first value-added reseller of Canon MREAL system for Mixed Reality in the United States. The MREAL System for Mixed Reality is a visualization tool that seamlessly combines the real and virtual worlds for a powerful immersive experience.

Design Interactive is a leading provider of training system development and experts in human-machine interaction. Design Interactive will sell the MREAL system as part of the specialized training they develop for government and industry clients who have employees in high-risk situations.

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Head-mounted display for Canon MREAL System for Mixed Reality

“We are pleased to welcome Design Interactive as a Canon MREAL reseller,” said Toyotsugu Kuwamura, executive vice president and general manager, BISG, Canon U.S.A., Inc. “Through Canon’s MREAL System for Mixed Reality and integrated Training Management System, users in high-risk industries will be able to visualize a potentially dangerous scenario before they have to encounter it in the real world.”

Preparing for Dangerous Situations

High risk training is a specialized form of training for tasks that involve a high degree of risks related to safety or costs. High risk training is provided to professionals who are asked to work in environments that are normally dangerous or inaccessible.

The MREAL system is uniquely suited for high risk training because it can immerse users in virtual scenarios while allowing them to still see the real world – including their hands, tools, colleagues, and instructors.

Eileen Smith, Director, E2i Creative Studio at the University of Central Florida’s Institute for Simulation & Training, said “High risk environments are multi-layered, and involve understanding how events put in motion will resolve themselves. Context is key in training, and the MREAL system allows the context to be altered easily and frequently to challenge a trainee throughout their journey toward excellence.”

Dr. Kay Stanney, CEO at Design Interactive said “The MREAL system provides a truly seamless and compelling blend between the virtual and real worlds. We are confident that it will help us deliver effective, engaging and value-added training solutions to government and industry clients.”

The integrated solution that Design Interactive will provide to its clients includes three key parts:

MREAL Display MD-10: Released in the U.S. in July 2016, the MREAL Display MD-10 features an expanded field of view and higher resolution than earlier models. The MD-10 enables trainees to immerse themselves in the virtual training scenario while still seeing real objects clearly and precisely.

MREAL Training Management System (MREAL TMS): The MREAL TMS acts as a central dashboard to collect and measure key performance metrics.  Instructors can review key data points and benchmarks to assess the trainee’s overall performance and retention. The MREAL TMS also integrates with select Learning Management Systems so instructors can incorporate the data into a broader curriculum.

MREAL Plug-In for Unity 3D: This tool enables instructors to leverage existing 3D content for training scenarios. The 3D content can easily be launched as part of an immersive experience within the MREAL system.

With these combined solutions, Canon and Design Interactive will bring next-generation capabilities enabling clients to reach mastery on complex tasks that can later be used in life-threatening situations in the field.

Mountainside Rescuers under Fire

In a post on the Design Interactive blog, Design Interactive experts discuss a mixed reality experience they developed to demonstrate the power of Canon’s Mixed Reality platform at the Interservice/Industry Training, Simulation, and Education Conference (I/ITSEC) Conference.

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In a Design Interactive demonstration of the type of training that’s possible with Canon’s MREAL mixed-reality system I/ITSEC attendees could handle physical objects while visualizing the high-risk environment.

With Design Interactive’s mixed-reality experience, conference attendees visualized what it would be like to stand at the precipice of a bottomless void in the snow and be required to harness themselves to an icy rock wall so they could repel to help an injured warfighter. In the middle of the experience, the trainee takes fire. Another warfighter takes a bullet and the attendee must spring into action, applying a tourniquet under fire.

The Design Interactive blog post clarifies the differences between augmented reality, virtual reality and mixed reality systems. Unlike virtual reality systems like the Oculus Rift, MREAL provides the flexibility to couple virtual and physical elements. For example, your hands disappear from view if you lift your hands to your eyes while wearing an Oculus product. With MREAL, trainees can always see their hands, instructors, and the tools they need to accomplish the task.

Like augmented reality, the MREAL allows trainers to provide visualizations of instructions that can help trainees navigate or perform the task.

Designers of MREAL training exercises can choose to make the experience fully virtual or customize the amount of virtual content that is required for the job.

In addition to high-risk training, Canon is promoting the MREAL system for use in education, research, and manufacturing.

 

Survey on Creative Work Environments Shows Differing Opinions

According to research by The Creative Group staffing firm, managers and employees don’t see eye to eye about the type of office setting that provides the most creative work environment. Creative workers gravitated toward private offices, while managers preferred open-concept offices and cubicles.

In a recent survey, more than 400 advertising and marketing executives responded to this question: “Which of the following workspace arrangements do you think is most conducive to encouraging creativity?”

The executives’ responses were as follows:

  • Open-concept office (unenclosed spaces for multiple people): 36%
  • Cubicle (semi-enclosed workspace for one person): 21%
  • Shared office (enclosed workspace for 2-3 people): 19%
  • Private office (enclosed workspace for 1 person): 18%
  • Remote office (home, coffee shop, etc.): 4%
  • Don’t know: 1%

When 1,000 U.S. workers were asked the same question, their views were different. Many creative workers favored private offices. Here are the responses from the workers:

  • Private office: 36%
  • Open-concept office: 26%
  • Cubicle: 19%
  • Shared office: 14%
  • Remote office: 4%
  • Don’t know: 2%

Creating a Better Space

The Creative Group offers four ideas for creating a more stimulating work environment.

Construct creativity zones. Designate a few areas on the office for brainstorming and impromptu meetings. Stock each space with industry publications and an easel pad to jot down ideas.

Offer private sanctuaries. Provide stations where individuals can work in solitude without distraction. While open floor plans can increase collaboration among employees, some projects require greater focus and concentration.

Build a mood board. Encourage team members to post content they find intriguing to a common wall where others can draw inspiration. Also invite staff to take photos of anything they might want to reference for future projects.

Think outside the office. Hold team meetings in a nearby park, courtyard, or cafe. A change of scenery is sometimes all it takes to spark the imagination.

About The Creative Group

The Creative Group (TCG) specializes in connecting interactive, design, marketing, advertising, and public relations talent with companies on a project, contract-to-hire, and full-time basis.

The Creative Group blog features career and management advice such as:

Switching from Graphic Design to UX Design

How Organizational Culture Can Impact Your Career Growth

 

Research from The Creative Group shows executives and workers differ on ideal work environment for creativity (PRNewsFoto/The Creative Group)
Research from The Creative Group shows executives and workers differ on ideal work environment for creativity (PRNewsFoto/The Creative Group)

 

 

Authors on Wattpad Writing Platform Can Earn Cash with In-Story Ads

Wattpad is an online writing platform for the creation and discovery of original stories. The Wattpad community connects more than 45 million people around the world who want to write, read, or comment on serialized stories about the things they love.

Wattpad writers comes from all walks of life. Some are best-selling novelists who want to build their audience. Others are casual writers who share stories for fun.

Every month, more than 2.3 million writers on Wattpad devote countless hours to writing, editing, and engaging with readers around the globe.

You can read Wattpad stories anywhere you go without downloading a PDF. You can also share comments on the story as you read it.
You can read Wattpad stories anywhere you go without downloading a PDF. You can also comment on stories as read.

The founders of Wattpad understand how much effort writers put into their stories every day: “We also recognize that making money from writing can be difficult – especially for online writers.”

So, Wattpad has created another way for writers to increase their earning potential. When ads are strategically placed between chapters of some of the most popular stories on Wattpad, the writer earns money every time a reader views the ad.

“The dynamic Wattpad community is unlike any other social platform. It’s the interconnected community of storytellers and audiences that makes the Wattpad Futures program a viable income source for writers,” said Wattpad’s co-founder and CEO Allen Lau. “Readers have always encouraged their favorite storytellers with messages, comments and votes. Now they can support Wattpad writers in a way that increases the writer’s income without having to pay out of pocket.”

White writers earn money doing what they love, advertisers have the opportunity to connect with millions of engaged, mobile-first Millennials and Generation Z readers.

Wattpad Stars

Writers who succeed in building an audience of readers with stories that go viral can apply for the Wattpad Stars program. Wattpad Stars receive career-building opportunities to see their writing come to life in feature films, publish books, or brand stories.

Wattpad has published tips for writers who want to publish their stories on the platform.

 

ARt: Augmented Reality to be Featured at Cyberarts Gallery

Although the world is abuzz about Pokémon GO, the first wildly popular game to use augmented reality (AR), artists have been creating AR art for years. To recognize some early adopters of AR technology, the Boston Cyberarts Gallery will present an exhibition entitled “ARt: Augmented Reality.”

The exhibition runs from September 17 through October 30, with an opening reception September 16.

Featured artists include: Joseph Farbrook, John Craig Freeman, Will Pappenheimer, and Zachary Brady.

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“Drawing Constellations” by William Pappenheimer with Zachary Brady

Drawing Constellations by Will Pappenheimer, in collaboration with Zachary Brady, is an interactive drawing, installation, and app that uploads drawings to a constantly moving and evolving three-dimensional “constellation” situated outside the Gallery. Upon creating a drawing on a tablet, the user’s 3D drawing is then transferred into 3D augmented reality space, superimposed and sited at the gallery by GPS location.

Defending Virtual by Joseph Farbook is an AR-artwork in which a $100 bill rests on a traditional pedestal, inciting temptation. When viewed through a tablet screen, the bill is defended by a hand holding a gun and making threatening gestures at anyone who gets too close. As money is arbitrarily produced by governments, trade wildly on the stock exchange, and commoditized into debt, what does it currently represent? Both the value of money, and the defense of its value have become entirely virtual. Yet the consequences are often devastatingly real.

Green Street and AR, by John Craig Freeman is a site-specific AR art piece for smartphones and mobile devices. There are particular locations around the world where network activity has become so intense that the virtual world has begun to penetrate into the real world. Objects appear to replicate and float off into the sky. Entire buildings lose their mooring and drift away at the intersection of Green Street and AR.

About Boston Cyberarts

Boston Cyberarts is an umbrella organization for several ventures that focus on new and experimental media. George Fifeld founded it in 1999 with seed funding the Massachusetts Cultural Council. He defines “cyberart” as any artistic endeavor in which computer technology is used to expand artistic possibilities. In cyberart, the computer’s unique capabilities are integral elements of the creative process, in the same way that paint, photographic film, musical instruments, and other materials have always been used to express an artist’s vision.

In 2001, the Boston Cyberarts Festival presented one of the first Augmented Reality artworks in the world. Bruce Campbell from the Human Interface Technology Laboratory at the University of Washington showed his BCFlora, a simulator for plant structure created from a virtual plant genome in a Magic Book augmented reality environment.

During the 2011 Cyberarts Festival, Mark Skwarek placed an AR set of invading aliens throughout the Greenway Conservancy, around the Festival headquarters at Atlantic Wharf and across the channel to the Children’s Museum. Plus, the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA) hosted Manifest AR, an international group of AR artists who placed multiple AR art inside and outside the ICA.

The Boston Cyberarts Gallery supports experimentation in the arts through exhibitions, events, education, and collaboration with like-minded groups. The goal is to foster the development of new practices in contemporary art-making.

Located in the Green Street station on the MBTA’s Orange line in Jamaica Plain, the Boston Cyberarts Gallery is the only art space in the country located in a train station.

The ARt: Augmented Reality exhibition is free and open to the public.

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