Starting today, we are making an important change in regard to printing and order fulfillment. I will no longer be printing and shipping orders from home. Instead, I will now be drop shipping orders with a company called iPrintfromHome.
Juggling the responsibilities of being a freelance illustrator and managing a print store has often been a challenge. If you run a creative business, you know there are many days when you spend more time doing clerical tasks than actually creating.
For years, I have been adding more tasks to my schedule without subtracting anything. My work days have become longer and longer. Over time, this approach has taken a toll on me, both mentally and physically. With all the various things I was trying to do, I left little time for myself to relax or recharge.
I thought about which of my tasks I could feasibly outsource, and I began exploring options to help with print fulfilment. My biggest concern with outsourcing printing was quality control. I researched sites that offered printing and drop shipping and narrowed it down to four options. I ordered test prints from all four, skeptical that the quality would meet my expectations.
To my surprise, one of the four not only met but exceeded my expectations. I think the print quality is even better than the prints I have been making at home. In addition to being a timesaver, this is also going to allow me to offer new sizes and paper types
Running a print store has been a roller coaster. It has been both my favorite thing I’ve done, as well as a source of great stress at times. I feel really good about these changes and am more excited about the future of the store than I have been in a long time.
Here’s a rundown of the changes:
From the customer side, nothing changes. Orders can be placed through the site the same way it has always been done. My signature has been digitally added to all of the prints in the location I would previously hand-sign.
Before, I would print and ship everything myself, which is a time-consuming process. Now, all I have to do is prepare the file, send it to iPrintfromHome, and they do the rest. This is a huge convenience without sacrificing any of the print quality people have come to expect.
The maximum width on my home printer is 17". The largest sizes I have been able to offer until now have been 17x22 for posters and 17x17 for square images. If you have ever tried to find a frame for one of these prints, you have learned these are not common sizes. As such, I’m discontinuing these sizes in favor of more common sizes.
- 17x22 is becoming 18x24
- 17x17 is becoming 16x20 and/or 20x20
- 11x14, and 12x12 are unchanged
I have carefully adjusted each piece for the new dimensions. I am also offering smaller sizes for prints that were only previously available in larger sizes. For example, the city posters are now also available as 11x14 prints.
I have always printed my work on matte paper, but now I will also be offering a lustre (semi-gloss) option. The lustre paper is lighter weight than the matte paper, but the image is marginally sharper and the colors slightly deeper. It is a great match for the style of work I do. There will still be a matte option on all prints for customers who prefer a more traditional finish. The matte paper is closer to a medium weight, which is normal. I only note this because I was previously printing on heavier card stock.
Prices are based on size and paper type. You will notice matte prints cost $5 more than lustre prints in most sizes (the exception is 20" x 20", where the matte version is $10 more).
I would like to emphasize the price variance is due to a difference in production costs and not related to quality. Both options are archival quality prints. The lustre prints are just as good of quality as the matte prints. Matte prints simply cost more to produce. Which paper is better is not a matter of cost but rather personal preference.
All orders will still receive tracking numbers, and free shipping will continue to be offered for orders of $60 or greater. Delivery will likely take a few extra days compared to when we were shipping in house, so please keep that in mind when ordering. Lustre prints will usually ship within 1–2 days, whereas matte prints can take 3–4 days to ship.
Mail has often been slower during the pandemic, so I ask that customers allow 1–2 weeks for delivery.
We will continue to replace any prints damaged in transit for no additional cost, as has always been our policy.
I want to end by saying thank you to everyone who has ordered a print over the last six years and inspired me to keep the store open. All these changes are being made for the purpose of keeping the store sustainable into the future, and I hope you’ll find something you want to hang on your wall.