Saturday, May 21, 2011

K2 Graphic Services, Inc.

K2 Graphic Services, Inc.
Description: High Quality Printing at an affordable price!! Photography thru Mailing - Trade Show Displays, Banners and more…K2 Graphic Services
is your Turn Key Printer - 1-800-480-8650 Ext.22

Tell them Clovia Sent you.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Pictopia—the World Leader in Photo Art

For High Quality Photographic Prints, click on the following link of one of our affiliates: Pictopia
They are offering FREE Shipping until Dec. 31, 2010

Friday, October 1, 2010

Clovia Ng's new website

Clovia Ng's website for CNGraphics Art & Design has a new look. Please visit and explore all the links to her print on demand publishing sites.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

How Does Creativity Come to Us?

As a creative individual and a working artist, sometimes I go through brief periods where I cannot get motivated to even draw. As much as I have always loved it and have excelled at it since early childhood, there are some points in my life as an adult when everything else in my life takes precedence and fills up all the time in my day. I do both fine art / illustration, and graphic design in my full-time freelance business, CNGraphics Art & Design. For my fine art, I just want to head outdoors in this beautiful summer weather in New York and find a nice quiet natural setting with trees and water to settled down and paint for a few hours. However, I keep giving myself reasons not to actually do that because I have to clean and organize my home so I can feel more comfortable in my studio, or I should stay at home and follow up on my marketing contacts, or work on my promotional materials, or I have to go to the gym and do Pilates or just plain feel like I'd rather do things with friends, or I have to take care of my elderly mom. I work and do all these things and then there's no time left to paint for myself. Well, as an artist, I tend to get lots of creative energy. And I need an outlet to channel all that energy. So my resolution is to tell myself that each day, I have to work on something related to my art. So during those times when I am not working on client's projects and when I need to work on my own new portfolio pieces, I sit myself down, take a breather and close my eyes usually while listening to music...just for  several minutes to relax, clear my mind. Then I allow myself to think of the things I want to do (for my art), I think how these relate to my dreams, my wishes. When I figure what I want to do, I open my eyes and turn on the computer and surround my desk with books of images. Connect to the internet with paper and pencil in hand and start looking for the sites, images, writings that will inspire me for my next work of art whether that be a drawing, painting or design. I tell myself I have to commit at least a half hour to one hour of pure creative intervention which will lead to some sketching and eventually start the actual project.

The best way to find creativity is first to go to a place of calm and connect with your inner self, analyze your interactions with others (find what makes you tick, what excites you) and reflect on the recent or past events that pertain to your art project, reach deep into your memories, use your sense of smell, taste, sight, sound and touch of all the things related to your art subject and surround yourself with imagery. This sensory overload is a surefire way to get the creative juices kicking in again.

My place of calm and conceptualization is usually in my studio, sometimes I sit at my desk in front my new iMac 27", sometimes at my drafting table, or outside in the bookstore's coffee shop with magazines spread at my table, or my favorite place of meditation at the park by the Long Island Shore in Larchmont, NY with my trusty black bag full of painting materials. I go there after I've thought about what I will paint and find the luxury of time in a day's planned schedule. Sometimes, the landscape painting is the breather I need to before I do a larger in studio painting or a tedious graphic design job. Other times, I make the effort to go to an occasional figure drawing session at a local studio or the Society of Illustrators in NYC to loosen up and refresh my skills. I am gradually going out and drawing again and gradually want to do art everyday again. For a period of several years I was drawing in my sketchbook everyday and working in a studio doing a complete full-sized painting a week. Then I turned to restaurant graphic design as a means to make more money for the next few years and haven't painted as much. Yes, the economy is still bad, but the urge to be creative and do art is too strong. I need to create art to make myself feel useful and just be happy in life. And then when the economy picks up again I will focus my energies into selling that art I've made. It only demands an hour a day to start and if you stick to creating, you will begin to find the time to spend more time on it. It's a necessity for when you have a client demanding artwork from you, so it is best to stay in practice, focus and get the ball rolling.


Friday, June 4, 2010

Freelancers: Get Paid, Not Played

Trouble getting paid? You're not alone.

77% of freelancers have been stiffed by a deadbeat company. It's not your fault. The Department of Labor makes sure W–2 employees get paid, while freelancers have to sue for their check or just walk away.
We're 30% of the workforce; it's time to change the game.

Join the Freelancer's Union campaign to get freelancer workers paid on time and for the right amount. Go to to join the campaign and help yourself and the art community. On the Freelancer's Union site are alot of information on different issues on taxes, unemployment, alerts on companies that don't pay, job postings, etc. They are a good group to get to know.


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Learning and Designing

Keeping busy is important. Whether running a small business or working in an office. Now a days with the economy the way it is, working overtime seems to be common place. So for Student it's also as important to stay busy. So what to keep busy with? As students we know that education provides us with information and direction as to what design is about and what we need to do. So...I think there can never be enough of that is. Getting a BA in Graphics is fine and a Masters makes us that much more able to provide and produce.

Technology has given us the internet and with that various platforms and venues to share, create and learn. I'm about to finish an Online program from the Art Institute of Pittsburg in Digital Design as so have experienced learning via internet. A lot different from the classroom. I'm able to have access 24 hours a day to lectures and other class related material. I share documents and compositions with other schoolmates with ease. Because I'm getting use to this it has lead me to look for other things Graphic Art.

 Recently I received an email about a Webinar.  Corel is offering it Tues Feb 23...and there is no cost.

This kind of event is important because it will keep us on the cutting edge and to be able to respond to client needs with the proper solution.  Now we are student so what clients am I talking about?  The clients I am referring to are the ones that will require your services when you graduate or even before.  If you are savvy, getting an internship is a really good way to figure out what's going on and what you have to do.  If you do get one your knowledge of technical things will prove you to be a welcome addition. 
Also YouTube is a great place to find Video Tutorial for most all Adobe Software as well as Web Design tools such as Joomla.  One really good place to find instruction on is LayersTV.  We rarely learn all that there is to know about the Adobe product in the classes we take and so there we are with this powerful application with so many features however only discussing the basics in class.  In my next post I'll be talking about "Filling In" what class work doesn't provide.  I think it is so important because the software offers so much more than we really realize.


Saturday, February 13, 2010

Always Sign A Written Contractual Agreement

Before beginning any job that is more than a favor for a friend, please seal the deal with a written contract outlining in detail the job description, all specs, transfer of rights and terms. It is very important to speak to your client and discuss all the details of the job including deadline and their budget so that you can devise a written contract and come up with an estimate for a fee based on their needs. Try not to settle on just a verbal agreement, they do not hold up in court when your client does not pay you. Even saved email messages are better than verbal agreements.

In the contract, note that this is a written agreement between you, the Artist and the Client. It would be wise to outline the following on your company logo, with contact information at top:
The client's contact information, name, address, tele number
Job date, Job number
Job description of kind of project (whether it is a brochure, postcard, letterhead, sign, website, etc.) with dimensions, folding, colors (4/4 or 4/0), on type of paper, amount to be printed
Job deadline and other due dates such as when all supported material will be supplied from client, sketches due, comps due, final due, print date
Fees for each project and how Payment should be made (I like either the 50% upfront, 50% when final is approved or 1/3 payments methods)
Usage and terms: to include copyright transfers, whether it's once, for a limited amount of time, North American Serial Rights, International or all rights (a buy-out, which demands a substantially higher fee from the Client for the Artist), etc.
Terms can include how original files are handled (usually given for an extra cost), how many sketches and revisions are included and the cost for any additional work, additional usage on other materials or media, any expenses related to the job (materials, travel, printing, etc), cancellation terms (usually I take 50% after sketches have been approved and 100% of fee if the project was canceled after the final design was approved no matter what the reason), how the Artist will be credited on the piece, copyright notice, determine the ownership of the designs or illustrations, release of your responsibility towards an lawsuit against your client for any undesirable business practices and arbitration should you take your Client to court if you do not get paid. The amount that you could go to court for varies with each person and situation, however, to me, it is not worth it for me to hire a lawyer for any job under $1,000.
Signatures. Have both you and your Client or representative hand sign the contract in person.

These are the most important features that your contract should be constructed with. For further information on how to set up a contract, look at the most recent Graphic Artists' Guild Pricing and Ethical Guidelines which can be purchased from the Guild or any Barnes and Noble. The PEGs will have samples and also give you rates and prices to base your own rates for many different kinds of projects. Other books are also written specifically for Graphic Designer's, Illustrators or Fine Artists by art lawyer, Tad Crawford and contain many, many sample contracts and letters of agreements that you can base your own from are available in bookstores.