Selling your art on POD websites – Zazzle vs Society6 (Part 1)

Selling on POD websites pt 1

 

Welcome to part 1 of my 2 part series on Selling your art on POD Websites: Zazzle vs. Society6!

 

So I’ve been selling my designs on Zazzle and Society6 for a little over a year now.

 

I  don’t have the most experience out there, or largest amount of sales, but I wanted to share what I’ve learned so far using these two different Print On Demand demand websites to sell my artwork.  Hopefully this guide can help you decide which of these sites could be best for you!

 

Print On Demand basically means an item is printed or created after it has been purchased.  You upload your art or designs onto their website and digitally place them on to different products.  Then, the company prints and ships the product to the customer only after they buy it, and sends you small commission in return.

 

You do not have to pay for anything or maintain an inventory, so this is a fairly risk-free way to get your art and designs out into the online world!

 

There are several websites out there who offer a similar service.  I chose Zazzle and Society6 after doing some research because they are both pretty popular and widely known, offering good customer service and fair designer programs.

 

Now I would like to discuss some of the major differences (mainly pros and cons) between both of these two Print on Demand websites, in my experience, as a designer (and consumer) living in Canada.

Audience

Society6 – I feel like Society6‘s audience is more fine art based. There is more of a focus on prints, and different ways of displaying unique art work (ex. framed art prints, tapestries).

Zazzle seems to cater more towards audiences looking for graphic design based products. Think wedding invitations, birthday cards, and business cards.  Also, graphic t-shirts with funny/topical sayings are top sellers.

Store front

As an artist I prefer Society6‘s store front, as it looks more like an artist’s portfolio. You can view all of your designs as prints and then see what other products you can get with that design on it.  It is very cleanly designed and generally easy to view and use.

 

The Zazzle storefront has recently been revamped so your”Home” tab is the landing page for your storefront.

 

Under the “Home” tab your “Most Popular” products show up first, followed by your “Categories”, then “Recently Sold” products, and finally “Latest Products”.  You can customize which categories are shown.

 

There is also a”Products” tab which seems to show a mix of your more popular items, a “Collections” tab(which can include your own products as well as other people’s), followed by “Comments” and “About” tabs.

 

While this new storefront is a major improvement from what it was before, I find it a little cluttered and also think it may be confusing or overwhelming for a first time user.

 

A redeeming factor for Zazzle is that you have the ability to have multiple stores under the same account, which is not possible on Society6 and this time.

Ease of upload

When I first started I thought Zazzle was easier to create products with, but once I caught on to Society6 I realized it is actually less work in the long run.

 

This is because first you upload your original image and choose the appropriate tags, then upload your image again in a variety of different sizes up to 11 times (if you choose to enable those products) – and your work is automatically placed on all of their different products.

 

On Zazzle you upload your image only once but then you have to create each item separately (they do have a “Quick Create” tool but I don’t recommend using it), and then add custom tags for each product which can be very time consuming.

 

One thing that does set Zazzle apart though is that you (and your buyer) can customize each individual item with text or other images, all within their website.

 

On Society6 there are no options for customization after you’ve created your products, besides changing the colours of some items.

Earnings

Now the part you really want to know – on which of these websites can you make more $$??

 

Personally I have made more $ on Zazzle, however my earnings range from .10 cents to 10 dollars or more depending on the product sold.  In general my earnings from each sale is fairly small ($1-$3 range).

 

On Zazzle you can set your own commission rate, so it can be as  high as you choose — but keep in mind it will be hard to compete with other stores and get sales.  The typical commission rate is usually around 10%.

 

On Society6 you get a fixed commission rate on products, but you can choose your own commission for prints.  I haven’t had as many sales on Society6 but generally have earned about $4-$5 per sale, so the set commission rate seems pretty fair to me.

 

Recently my Society6 store has seen a few more sales (since hitting the 1 year mark), so fingers crossed this trend will continue!

 

I have also noticed a fluctuation in sales with the most occurring around the Holidays and a complete lull in sales around early summer (June-July), so keep that in mind.

 

CLICK HERE FOR PART 2 including information about: Payment, Quality of Products, Marketing of Products, Shipping, and my own Summary remarks!

 

What has been your experience selling on POD websites?  Do you have any of your own tips to share?  Feel free to leave your comments below!

 

Cheers!

 

Julie

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6 Fun Creative Apps for Adults

creative apps for adults neon mandala

All of the apps mentioned in this post are for Android, and can be found in the Google Play Store.

They are all recommended based on my personal experience and I am in no way affiliated with the app companies, nor am I getting any sort of compensation for mentioning their apps here.

All images below are created by me using the specified app, using my LG G3 mobile phone and ASUS Transformer tablet.

1. Magic Doodle

neon mandala doodle art magic app

Magic Doodle is a fun app where you choose a background color and then move your finger around on the screen and it mirrors your drawing to create unique and cool looking mandala-style artworks!

2. Colorfy

coloring book colorfy floral artwork

This is a beautiful coloring book app with tons of detailed line art to color for hours!  You can make in-app purchases to get even more designs but there are lots of free ones choose from.

3. SkillShare

I don’t have any examples of anything I’ve made from SkillShare but basically it is an app with video tutorials for all kinds of creative things including digital art, painting, printmaking, illustration, lettering and more! You can pay for a subscription but there are more than enough free videos available.

4. Momi Coloring

momi coloring app drawing book shoe

Momi Coloring app is similar to Colorfy.  It has different designs and again several free ones so between the two coloring apps you’ll have a lot to work with!

5. PhotoCollage

photo collage app society6 artwork sale

PhotoCollage is the main app I use for creating social media ads for sales and things in my Society6 and Zazzle stores.  This is an example of one of my ads created using this app.  I just take screenshots of my products and assemble them with text!  So simple!  There are quite a few layouts and editing tools in the app.

It is also fun and useful for editing personal photos.

6. Pixlr

pixlr colorful floral pop art

Pixlr is an app by Autodesk that can be used in your desktop browser or as an app on your mobile phone, but each version is different.

The mobile version has a lot of cool overlays and effects, while allowing you to either manipulate your own photographs or create a new composition from scratch.  The desktop version is more like a very simplified version of Photoshop, which I have used in the past as a substitute when I wasn’t able to download PS to the computer I was using.

Well, I hope you’ve enjoyed seeing my round up of these fun and creative apps for your android phone or tablet!  I had a lot of fun playing with them, so go ahead and check them out and have fun making your own masterpieces.  Feel free to post your results in the comments below!

Cheers,

 

Julie

New Sugar Skull Design and Products

Sugar Skull art print

I am definitely getting into a Hallowe’en mood now!

I got my nails done in orange and black, and created another skull drawing inspired by the Dia de Los Meurtos (Day of the Dead)!

If you haven’t seen it yet I am also running a contest on the blog this month! All you have to do to enter is download and colour in my free skull printable template and you have a chance to be featured in an upcoming blog post just before Hallowe’en!

Check out the post for details by clicking on the image below:

free skull printable template

And here is the new sugar skull design on some items in my Society6 store! Check them out:

Sugar Skull black tank top Sugar Skull Tank Top – $22

sugar skull tote bag gift Sugar Skull Tote Bag – $22

Sugar skull tapestry home decor Sugar Skull Tapestry – $39

Mens sugar skull t-shirt purple Sugar Skull Men’s Fitted Tee – $22

I am pretty happy with it and will probably be making some more versions before the end of the month, so stay tuned for that and be sure to follow my blog so you can see them!

Also coming up soon, my artwork is going to be in another exhibition at a gallery here in Vancouver! More details to come.

Anyways, hope you all are having a great week so far, Happy Hump day!

Cheers,

Julie

12 Easy & Free Art Tutorials (to get your creative juices flowing)

12 easy free art tutorials

Hello art lovers! Today I wanted to share with you all a list of fun, easy and FREE art tutorials to help get your creative juices flowing!

The tutorials include a mixture of different mediums. Some are to be done by hand and others are digital. Most of these I have done myself or used for inspiration in my own work.

To see my full list of art tutorials and inspiration check out and follow my Pinterest board on the topic!

1. How to Make An Amazing Outer Space Scene in Photoshop

2. How to Paint Beautiful Watercolor Agate Slices – Beautiful watercolour paintings I haven’t tried yet but have been meaning to.  

3. How to Create Repeat patterns in Photoshop – A great one for designing prints for Society6 and Zazzle.

4. How to Draw a Rose Step by Step – Lots of good beginner’s drawing tutorials on this website including this one!

5. Doodle Prompt – Viscera Phantasma – Beef up your sketchbook with this simple but beautiful doodle prompt!

6. Creative Art Journaling Tutorial – Optical Art – A cool op-art YouTube tutorial. YouTube is a great resource for art tutorials!  This creates an image similar to the one used in the featured photo.

7. Plastic Bag Printmaking – Want to try your hand at printmaking? This is a super simple monoprint tutorial using only acrylic paints and plastic bags!

8. Face Drawing tutorial – Step by step drawing tutorial on different parts of the face.

9. A simple and fun collage art idea! 

10. How to Paint Water with Acrylics – A little bit more of an advanced painting tutorial. Find more great acrylic painting tutorials on this website!

11. Galaxy Painting Tutorial – Paint a galaxy by hand with this simple YouTube tutorial.

12. Lino-cut Printmaking Tutorial – My own tutorial on how to make hand-made lino-cut prints!

Thanks for checking out my list and I hope you are planning on having some fun doing these easy tutorials!

Feel free to share your own art tutorials or your favorite ones in the comments section below. No spam please!

To check out my artwork please visit my website http://www.julieerindesigns.com, or you can follow me on Facebook or Instagram to keep up with my latest art, sales, and promotions!

Cheers and have a great week everyone,

~Julie

10 Ways to Get Over Artists Block

artists block text

Creative block, a.k.a. Artists block is something I am sure all creative people have experienced at one point or another in their lives.

Sometimes you just feel burnt out or cannot even fathom what to do next!

Especially when you have a deadline or a creative assignment this can be a huge burden and cause a lot of stress for an artist or aspiring artist.

Below are some great ways I have found to get over this hump and get my creative juices flowing again!

1. Get a sketchbook

Sometimes just getting a nice new blank sketchbook is all I need to feel motivated to fill it up with drawings and doodles and whatever else I feel like!

I got myself a beautiful Moleskine sketchbook and drew this:

owl drawing sketch moleskine sketchbook

2. Draw anything and everything

Look up pictures of cute animals and draw them (see above).

Doodle in your sketchbook – let your hand guide you.

Draw your pet, your friend’s pet, or even your friend! Look up pictures on Pinterest or Google images and draw them.

3. Use materials around you

Office pens, highlighters, nail polish, whatever you have in your general vicinity.  See what you can create using the limited materials available to you.

Here is a little doodle I made using only pens and highlighters:

pen highlighter doodle art blue yellow

4. Travel

It doesn’t have to be far, nor cost a fortune.

Just get outside and be inspired by the world around you, be it nature (a park or beach) or the bustling city streets.  Simply observe and immerse yourself in living life.

Sometimes a nice change of scenery is all it takes for creative inspiration!

5. Set it down, step away, and forget about it for a little while

Sometimes we just get burnt out creatively.

If you are feeling frustrated, sometimes it is best to just walk away for a little while and forget about it.  It doesn’t have to be a long time, even just a relaxing evening with friends or family where you don’t think at all about your art can be like hitting the reset button.

6. Try something new

Maybe you’ve never tried watercolor painting, or needle crafts, or something other artistic medium you have admired from afar.  Give it a shot!

7. Find some new materials to work with

Look for free art materials on Craigslist or Freecycle (freecycle.org)!

Sometimes all we need to be inspired are some fun new materials, maybe even something we hadn’t considered using before.

No need to go out and spend a fortune at the art store though, find something for free so if you don’t like it, no harm done!

I have gotten a whole bag full of unused yarn for needle crafts, and also a full lino-cut print making set for free on Freecycle!

8. Look at other art

Go check out some local galleries or simply look for art online!.

See what other people are making; obviously don’t copy them but you can be inspired by their work and create something in your own style!  Check out my online art gallery for inspiration.

9. Get down and dirty. Destroy to create!

Creation can be a destructive process.  It can also be fun just to get dirty and/or destroy something! Just don’t ruin anything of value or that you will regret later.

Ideas: Throw paint or coffee at a canvas or paper.  Rip up some paper or other materials.  Let out some of that frustration!

10. Do some tutorials

For me, this is a great one to develop creative ideas.

Look up tutorials online in your preferred medium: digital (Photoshop, illustrator), painting, drawing etc.  Youtube is a great resource for tutorials in all kinds of mediums!

Well that’s all the ideas I have for you today, I hope these will help you get over that pesky creative block!

How do you get over artist’s block?  Leave your ideas in the comment section below!!

Check out my website if you would like to see more of my artwork, and feel free to connect with me via Facebook and Instagram!

Cheers,

Julie

A New Design! Tree of Tangles

zendoodle tree trunk rings artwork

My latest design, titled “Tree of Tangles” (and it’s inverse) is finally finished!

I drew the original black version using my Faber-Castell Pitt Artist Drawing Pens in my Pro-Art Canson 9-Inch by 12-Inch Universal Sketch Book. I then scanned the image into Photoshop and created a second image using it’s inverse!

It is inspired by the rings of a tree which are visible when the trunk is cut horizontally.

Trees are a prominent feature of daily life here in British Columbia, Canada and were a big part of my childhood.  B.C. is home to some pretty old and huge ones, such as the 800 year old Douglas Firs on Vancouver Island.  If you ever have a chance to visit this region of the world I definitely recommend checking them out!

Anyway, the prints of these two designs are now available in my Society6 and Zazzle stores!

Below is a small sample of other available styles:
tree of tangles zentangle mens shirt

tree of tangles zentangle tote bag

zentangle tangled tree art canvas print glicee

I hope you guys have enjoyed seeing my latest designs!  Feel free to comment or ask any questions if you have them 🙂

Have a great week.
Cheers,
Julie