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Business Card Production Techniques in InDesign

Follow this tutorial to practice some of the tools used to set up a business card, Letterhead, #10 envelope

Pay careful attention to layout and design, typography, spelling, color specification, paper specification, presentation. Use your job sheet to specify all production details.

  • 8-up imposed
  • letterhead
  • envelope

Exercise due April 2nd


Layout Workbook, pp. 52-71. Structure and Organization: Building Foundations.

Layout Workbook, pp. 72-87. The Integration of Visual Elements: Establishing Hierarchy.

Layout Workbook, pp. 88-115. Typography: Shaping the Page.

Greeting Card Set

Scope of Project: Design and produce a set of four greeting cards with envelopes. The card size can be A2, which when folded is 4.25″ x 5.5″, A6 – 6 1/4″ x 4 5/8″, or A7 – 5″ x 7″.  You must have printing on the front and the back of the cards…printing on the inside is optional. The cards should be folding cards.

Materials: Your choice, as long as you follow these instructions:

The illustrations from each of the four cards must be your own original artwork. Absolutely no stock images. Photos or artwork in the illustrations must be your own work.

The four cards must be related to each other. The way in which they relate is part of your design decision and creativity…they can relate by style, color palette, topic, typography or other graphic device.

While you must output your final cards in color, you can complete the cards and envelopes using your choice of materials, with the object being to develop and creatively present a set of four related original greeting cards with hand crafted envelopes.

Workflow: You may use Photoshop and Illustrator to prepare the greeting card images. Use Adobe InDesign to set up the file for print. Then export the InDesign file to Adobe Acrobat in press resolution for your final print output.

Steps for creating the greeting card layout in InDesign.

  1. In the “new document” dialog turn off facing pages. Your greeting card will have an outside front and back which print on the same page, unfolded. If your card opens to a verse, add a second page. Turn off “facing pages.”
  2. A horizontal, greeting card when opened flat has a horizontal fold down the middle, a vertical card has a vertical fold down the middle. When setting up the new document, take into account that the card width will double on a vertical card, while the length will double on a horizontal card.
  3. Set appropriate margins if your card is going to have a white border or if you need a guide for your type.
  4. If your card is going to bleed, make sure to indicate .125″ bleeds in the document setup dialog before clicking ok. If you don’t see the settings for bleed, check the “more options” button.
  5. With the new document open, go to the Layout menu>Create Guides. You can divide the page in half vertically (2 columns with 0 gutter) or horizontally (two rows with 0 gutter).
  6. To import an image from Illustrator or Photoshop, go to File>place.
  7. Size the image appropriately
  8. Add type and logo or other graphic to back of card.
  9. Create a second page in the page palette by dragging a blank page from the top of the panel just below the icon for page one, and add type for greeting if desired.

Illustrator Type – Seal Exercise

Seal Exercise

OBJECTIVES – The purpose of this exercise is to familiarize you with the following:

• Shape drawing tools
• Palette principles
• Offset paths
• Add anchor points
• Type Tool
• Text Formatting
• Layers
• Export to Photoshop
• Filters

Create a decal, label, seal, or patch that can later be printed and applied to:

  • an article of clothing
  • a pillow or blanket as an applique
  • a mode of transportation
  • a cup/mug

Using a photo or illustration, digitally apply the “seal” to one of the above items.

Squares – Solutions

I hope you all enjoyed this little exercise. If your answer is 30, you are right. Travis, if you still count 31, show us that last square!


This solution is courtesy of Ben.